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Tools 023


Using Questions

Questions-and-answers slides are usually not very interesting. The frameworks in this series are interesting and unique! The text on these slides are graphics (instead of fonts), so the words can be formatted and animated more broadly.

Each of the downloads in this series has been animated. Be sure to read the framework detail to learn how each variation was approached and assembled. Then download a few and view them in slide show mode. The thumbnails alone do not do them justice.

Question slides are often the last slide in the presentation. Consider placing the question frameworks in this series on a slide with a title page background rather than a content slide background. The practice of using the title page background for the last page is like putting two covers on a book. It's a nice ending statement. There are a few versions in this series that are too large, maybe, to place on a title page background. Use the content page background in those cases.

V07 and v11 use puzzles to suggest a missing piece that will be filled by a question-and-answer period. We created the picture for the puzzle message. You can create your own puzzle messages for a more targeted slide. The FAQ entitled, "How do I cut a photograph into puzzle pieces" will help you make your targeted message into the puzzle pieces. This FAQ has instructions for creating the puzzle pieces in both PowerPoint 2007 and pre-PowerPoint 2007. Both are easy, although there are a few more steps in pre-PowerPoint 2007. Click here to view FAQ: How do I cut a photograph into puzzle pieces?

V03, 06, and 07 use intersection text. Since the words "questions" and "answers" have so many letters in common, you can change the intersection point if you wish.

Customizing the Questions frameworks

Adjust size

Since all of the text in the Questions series are graphics,. you'll need to group the fields and resize. Be aware, however, that grouping the fields will erase the animation that has been formatted in the download. It is simple enough to reapply the animation – none of it is tricky.

PowerPoint 2007 options

In addition to creating the puzzle pieces, you may want to format a nice bevel for the pieces. Click here to view FAQ: How do I get a suitable bevel for puzzle pieces?

There are other nice formatting effects in PowerPoint 2007 that you can apply to the graphic text. Be sure that the effects do not distort the clarity of the, text however. Also be sure that the styles you apply complement the rest of the presentation.

Shadows are particularly nice.

Color variations

Select color from your document's color palette or a complimentary color so that the graphics will reflect the color scheme of the rest of your document. It's not necessary to use lines with these frameworks unless you want to make the graphic text more bold without sizing it up.

3D variations

3D doesn't work all that well with the V07 and V11 puzzles unless you're using PowerPoint 2007 with a bevel. The 3D and layering obstacles work against each other.

3D is a reasonable formatting choice if the depth of the 3D is small. Sometimes 3D will make graphic text fill in too much and clarity is lost.


Shadows might be a nice formatting choice. Apply the shadows consistently to the page so that the contents appear consistent.

Gradients, patterns, and pictures

Gradients can be used to create depth or interest to the graphic text. Since these slides are simple, you can be a little more flamboyant with your formatting; just be sure these pages are still in line with your style preferences for the rest of the document.

There are techniques to cut photographs into puzzle pieces in both PowerPoint 2007 and pre-PowerPoint 2007 versions. Click here to view FAQ: How do I cut a photograph into puzzle pieces?


Animations should be selected that will enhance the meaning of the message, not merely to add interest to the slide. With these frameworks, however, you can get a little creative. Pieces come come in from "out of the blue," can grow into existence, etc. In fact, these slides are enhanced by the liberal and creative use of animation. Here is an opportunity to try some different things.

For example, V02 is animated in a playful manner. The letters fly in from the right and the "s" bumps into the "n" and then moves over to the correct position. This slide is more about the animation than the formatting. Use your imagination and try different approaches to this type of slide.

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