Tutorial for Concepts 129 – Clouds 1 and 2
Using the Clouds
Cloud 1 frameworks are perfect for holding images or text. They can be used with light backgrounds or dark backgrounds. They can be transparent and they can be opaque. The EMF versions can receive fill and line colors and the PNG examples can be tinted if you are using PowerPoint 2007. They are a must have for anyone who is developing IT charts. They can also be used as weather clouds, of course.
Cloud 2 frameworks are best suited for showing a technology cloud or for illustrating a loosely connected objects or objects that do not have a definite connection point.
Customizing the Clouds
The clouds are only one field, so you can resize/rescale by grabbing the image "handle" (at the corners of the image after it is clicked on).
If you want to rescale the clouds, hold the shift key down as you resize.
The clouds in Clouds 2 series are only one field, so they can be rescaled or slightly resized as necessary
PNGs (the gray versions) are not eligible for color changes; but if you use PowerPoint 2007, you may tint the PNGs the same way you'd tint a photograph.
The EMF (vector) versions (just the outline color) can receive both line and fill colors.
It may be beneficial for you to use both the gray PNG versions of the clouds and the EMF vectors together. If you don't want the cloud to be transparent, either
- Use the EMF vector and add a fill color
- Use the gray PNG version on top and put a EMF vector version with a fill under the gray PNG.
PowerPoint 2007 options
The vector version can receive drop shadows and glows. But bevels and reflections seem to make them appear less realistic (even though they are stylized and not necessarily realistic looking)?
Do not apply 3D.
Apply shadows only if you're using PowerPoint 2007. Shadows in PowerPoint 2003 tend to "flatten" the clouds.
Gradients, patterns, and pictures
You can format the vector versions of the clouds with gradients (PowerPoint 2003 and 2007) and patterns (PowerPoint 2007). You can also import photographs into the vector versions of the clouds. This FAQ will help you import your photographs. "How do I create photographs in different shapes from rectangular photographs?"
You may also want to just place a photograph in the cloud and add text next to it (as in the series example). A good way to do this is to put the photograph behind the cloud (the cloud is semitransparent).
The clouds should receive simple reveals. Group the cloud and its contents and reveal the group as a fade, faded zoom, etc.