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Tutorial for

Bullet Alternatives 006

Boxes on Foundation

Using Bullet Alternatives

Sometimes the bullets can go over the lead-in sentence/heading, especially if the lead-in sentence/heading is foundational to the bullets. This configuration will work very well in those instances. The boxes are drawn in 3D and do not have the 3D effect applied.

The sample and thumbnail for this framework series show a containment box below the thin platform/box, but you can choose downloads without it. Associated text below the thin platform does not need to be boxed – it looks very nice on its own. Whichever way you wish to use these frameworks, just be sure to use them consistently: use box or without box under platform but not both.

Once you have identified the best-suited bullet alternative variation, download it to a specific location on your computer so you'll be able to find it (the desktop is always a good choice).

Customizing your bullet alternative

Adjust size

If you want to change the size/shape of the PowerFramework, be sure to group it and resize the entire group. Once resized, ungroup to proceed with other customizations.

If you want to change the vertical dimensions for these frameworks so the fields accommodate the content more gracefully, it is easily accomplished. Ungroup the framework. To resize the boxes above the platform, move the boxes and the "tops" of the boxes up as a group. Once you have moved them into a position that allows for the content in the boxes to fit nicely in the box, select all of the boxes (not the top) and resize vertically until they sit onto the platform again. If you want to change the size of the container boxes below the platform, simply select all of the container boxes and enlarge/reduce vertically by dragging the bottom handles up or down. See below for a simple diagram on how to do this.

The same principle applies to the lower container boxes: make all active and resize smaller or larger together to match the size of the text content.

Color variations

The series example uses different colors of the same basic value to create the divisions. We don't often promote the use of color to make segments distinct (we like to reserve color for highlighting and as a tool to add layers of information), but the colors in the example suggest individual entities within a group – so this is an acceptable exception. If you use this method, you can either eliminate the line colors around the fields or apply the fill color to the line.

If you want to use the same color, formatting is slightly different. You must use line colors so each of the boxes are distinct. Don't just apply a black line. A better approach is to apply the fill color you want. Apply the fill color to the lines and then darken/lighten the line color until the boxes become distinctly visible. This may be a trial-and-error process to get the right amount of contrast.

3D variations

These frameworks are drawn in 3D so don't also apply a 3D effect.


Don't use shadows unless you are applying them in PowerPoint 2007. Then you can either apply shadows to the grouped framework if you are not going to use animation.

Gradients, patterns, and pictures

Use these effects sparingly: Gentle gradients, imported pictures that can accommodate overlaying text, subtle patterns (patterns available in pre-PowerPoint 2007 only).


Animate as wipes or another effects that support the flow of the framework.

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