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Tutorial for Concepts 118, 143, 144, 145 – Roads

Using the Roads

The CN118 series can be used to illustrate "journeys," sequences of events, milestones, "the road to xxx" (as in the series example), a road less traveled," etc. There are variations from which to choose: bumpy road can signify a difficult process; curves and windy roads can suggest changes in directions, straight roads can imply a straight and unwavering course of action.

The two variations can be used interchangeably or to illustrate another concept: V1 allows "passing" and V2 does not. This may be significant to your message as well.

The CN143 series is great to illustrate roads leading to or from a central idea or object. Icons and text can be placed at the beginning/end of the roads to communicate a more precise message. There two versions for each configuration: v1) viewed from above and v2) rotated with perspective. If you are using PowerPoint 2007 and above, you can edit the rotated version (add fill and line colors, etc.). Additionally, there are sometimes two configurations: the intersections with an odd number of rows are also available flipped vertically, which provides more options for message delivery.

Customizing the Roads

Adjust size

If you want to change the size/shape of the road, be sure to group it and resize the entire group. To scale, hold the shift key down as you resize. 

Adjust position of the colored routes in CN145 Rotaries

Each of the variations has a brightly colored route over each of the roads.  These colored routes all flow from/to the vertical road directly beneath the rotary.  If you need to have a route start/end from a different road, all you need to do is move or duplicate the route and then spin the route using the green handle and then placing it over the desired road.  See the steps below to accomplish this.

Color variations

You can use realistic coloring (pavement color, white line, etc.) or use colors from your company's color palette to create a stylized road that matches your other content. Be sure you work carefully with the colors of the road pieces and background, creating a high-contrast base for any overlaying text. If you have a dark background, use colors for the road that are dark. That way white or light-colored overlaying text will "pop." If you have a white or light background in your template, lighten the road so that dark text will be high-contrast and pop. See the series example: the road has been lightened so that the dark text is clear and readable (pops).

PowerPoint 2007 options

Don't add bevels or shadows or other trick formatting to these roads. It's better to keep them simple. You can add/adjust the 3D rotation in PowerPoint 2007/2010.

3D variations

Don't use 3D with these roads.


Don't use shadows with the pieces of the road. You can use shadows under the objects on the road, however.

Gradients, patterns, and pictures

You might have a picture that has a texture that looks like asphalt. You might consider importing the photograph into the road field. You can also use a subtle gradient to emphasize the distance shown by the road.


Since roads are not typically movable objects, we suggest that you animate the other items on the slide and leave the road stationary. The roads need minimal formatting other than color (discussed above).

Series that relate to this tutorial:

CN118 – Concept 118 – Roads

Possible use example

CN143 – Concept 143 – Road intersections

Possible use example

CN144 – Concept 144 – Diverging/Converging Roads

Possible use example

CN145 – Concept 145 – Rotaries

Possible use example

Links to instructions for getting the framework into your presentation

  1. Determine the best file type for your needs
  2. Download the file
  3. Import the framework into your presentation
    1. Importing a PPT file
    2. Importing a EMF or PNG
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