Using the Crystal Ball
The crystal ball can be used to convey two primary concepts. Crystal balls are icons for predictions and can also signify a faulty prediction. Predictions are part of the management of every business, so there will be opportunities to use this concept often. You probably won't want to overuse it, however; or it just looks "cute."
There are two pedestal variations, each with a download. Each download contains four variations of the pedestal. It may take a little longer to download the crystal balls than other PowerFrameworks downloads because the file sizes are approximately a 500Kb.
More ideas: the crystal ball in the series example is a negative example. You may not want to leave that on the screen as you talk about the positive aspects of your company. Instead, fade the crystal ball out and replace it with a positive picture that represents the hard work your company does, in the case of the series example, in order to develop predictive recommendations for client. Remember to associate positive images with your company's products and services.
Be sure to see the "Gradients, patterns, and pictures" section below for tips on how to get photographs formatted for use as objects appearing within the crystal ball.
Customizing the Crystal Balls
Group the crystal ball and pedestal, then size as a single group. Hold the shift key down as you resize to maintain scale.
Also, with regard to size: when you add your pictures, graphics, or text behind the crystal ball, be sure that they are smaller than the crystal ball. Otherwise the concept is lost and it just looks like you graphic sitting on a pedestal. This is important.
PNGs are not eligible for color changes. If you use PowerPoint 2007, however, you may tint the PNGs the same way you'd tint a photograph.
The crystal balls are usable with all template backgrounds, regardless of whether they are light or dark colors.
PowerPoint 2007 options
A nice effect to apply to the photographs that appear "inside" the crystal ball are soft edges. You can use a 10- or even 25-point edge on the photographs. See the series example: it has the soft edges.
Do not apply 3D effects to the PNGs.
Don't apply shadows to the PNGs.
Gradients, patterns, and pictures
The crystal ball and the pedestals are PNGs, which are not eligible for this type of formatting.
If you choose to use photographs as the objects within the crystal ball and you would like to convert your rectangular photographs into circles, you should review the FAQ entitled, "How do I create photographs in different shapes from rectangular photographs?"
Animations can be rather fun. The object showing up in the crystal ball can fade in slowly and then change to other objects with a series of fade ins and fade outs. You can also use a slow zoom in and out as an animation effect. Or ad a spin to the zoom or fade.