Change the Slide Color Scheme: MS PowerPoint

Dennis Faas's picture

One way to alter the look of your visual aids in an MS PowerPoint 2000 presentation is to change the color scheme. The color scheme determines what colors are assigned to eight specific slide characteristics (such as fonts, backgrounds and bullets). Each template, even the blank presentation, comes with a set of color schemes -- the default that materializes as soon as you apply it plus several others.

These predefined schemes have been specially selected to include colors that not only look good together, but that also supply a sense of balance. Still, you can choose to modify the existing schemes or create your own completely new variations. These changes can then be applied to one slide; to every slide, one at a time; or to the entire presentation via the Slide Master. I'll do an article about the Slide Master at another time.

Many of the visual aspects of your slides can be altered in one convenient location.

After you have applied a design template to your presentation, you have the option of replacing the default setting with one of the other predefined color schemes.

  1. Choose the Format | Slide Color Scheme to access the Color Scheme dialog box.
  2. Click to select one of the schemes associated with the template, and then click apply to affect one slide, or Apply to All to update the entire presentation.

Your slides reflect the new color scheme. The artwork and font styles associated with the template are preserved.

When you want to modify the existing color scheme or create your own distinctive variation, follow the steps below:

  1. Choose Format | Slide Color Scheme and click the Standard tab.
  2. Select the color scheme most like the one that you are seeking, and then click the Custom tab.
  3. Select the item that you want to change (click the square to the left of the element name), and then click Change Color to access the Accent and Hyperlink Color dialog box. You can modify one element color, or you can change all of them, but you must make modifications one by one.
  4. To apply one of the colors from the palette, click the Standard tab, and then select a shade. Click OK when you are finished.
  5. Click Custom to blend your own shade and then click OK to apply the chosen color.
  6. Repeat steps 4 through 6 until you have altered all the slide elements that you want to recolor. If you decide to save this scheme for future use, click Add as Standard Scheme. The scheme will be added to the Color Schemes that are associated with the particular template that you have applied.
  7. Click Apply to use this color scheme on the slide in the viewing screen or click Apply to All to change the entire presentation.

Wasn't that easy?

(c) Carol Bratt, all rights reserved. Used with permission. Duplication is forbidden without express consent of author. Visit Carol's web site to learn more tips like this one!

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