Apply a Solid Background Color: MS PowerPoint

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To select a solid background color in your presentation, follow these steps:

  1. Choose Format | Background to open the Background dialog box. Click the Background fill drop-down list to continue.
  2. Select one of the visible colors (colors associated with the presentation's color scheme), or click More Colors to pick a color from the standard palette or to create your own custom shade.
  3. After you have selected a color, you can click Preview to see what it will look like when applied to your slides. Click OK and Apply to apply to one slide, or click Apply to All to use throughout the presentation.

As soon as you complete Step 3, the color is applied to the slide or slides that you have designated.

Although each of us has certain color preferences, just liking a particular color isn't a good reason to use it in a background or color scheme. Professional graphic designers know that certain color combinations work together and others don't. The following points offer some tips for those of us who aren't professionals.

  • Use only two of three colors per visual -- more might distract.
  • Use a consistent color scheme throughout your presentation.
  • When in doubt, use one of the design templates.
  • Use red and green with caution because some people have difficulty with these colors.
  • Know your room. Is it light or dark? Light backgrounds work best in rooms that aren't completely dark, and dark backgrounds work best in dark rooms.
  • Know your equipment. As a general rule of thumb, overheads are more effective with light backgrounds and on-screen slide shows with dark backgrounds.
  • Test your color scheme before the big day using people other than yourself.

Practice with MS PowerPoint and become familiar with this concept before I move on to the next article.

(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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