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Insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2016 for Mac

Learn how to insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2016 for Mac. There is more than one way to add shapes in PowerPoint.


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Product/Version: PowerPoint 2016 for Mac

OS: Mac OS X






Shapes are the building blocks of whatever you create in PowerPoint. In fact, even a text box that you add to your slide is essentially a shape with a No Fill attribute. Once you get proficient with shapes, you can do so much more. For example, you can combine multiple shapes to create fancier shapes. However, you need to start with the very basics, and there's so much to learn even at this foundation level. The first task you need to do is to insert a shape. Fortunately, PowerPoint makes it easy to do this task. To insert a new shape on your PowerPoint slide, follow these steps:

  1. Launch PowerPoint 2016 for Mac and open a blank presentation with a new slide. You can change the Slide Layout to Blank by selecting the Home tab | Layout | Blank option (see Figure 1).
  2. Slide with Blank layout
    Figure 1: Slide with Blank layout
  3. Now, access the Insert tab of the Ribbon, and click the Shapes button to bring up the Shapes drop-down gallery, as shown in Figure 2.
  4. Shapes drop-down gallery
    Figure 2: Shapes drop-down gallery
  5. Tip: The Shapes drop-down gallery can also be accessed from the Home tab. To see the entire Shapes drop-down gallery within the Home tab, click the Shapes button, highlighted in blue within Figure 3.
  6. Shapes button within the Home tab
    Figure 3: Shapes button within the Home tab
  7. Within the Shapes drop-down gallery, PowerPoint provides options to choose shapes from several categories such as Lines, Rectangles, Basic Shapes, Block Arrows, Stars and Banners, Callouts, etc. Learn more about shape types in our Types of Shapes in PowerPoint 2016 for Mac tutorial. For now, choose any Shape by clicking on it. Thereafter, use any of these options to place an instance of the selected Shape on your slide:
  8. i: Click anywhere on the slide to add the Shape in a predefined size (typically 1 inch x 1 inch), as shown in Figure 4.
  9. Click and place a Shape on the slide
    Figure 4: Click and place a Shape on the slide
  10. ii: Alternatively, click and do not release the primary button on your mouse (or other input device). Continue dragging until you create a large enough shape on your slide, as shown in Figure 5, below.
  11. Draw a shape as large or small as you want
    Figure 5: Draw a shape as large or small as you want
  12. Tip: Hold the Shift key while dragging to constrain the height and width proportions. Hold the Alt (Option) key to draw a shape from the center. You can also draw while holding both the Alt (Option) and Shift keys. To find more keyboard shortcuts, you can download a copy of our PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts and Sequences ebook.
  13. You can similarly insert as many shapes as you want. Save your presentation often.

See Also:

(Index Page)

Insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows
Insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2013 for Windows
Insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac
Insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows
Insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2007 for Windows
Insert Shapes in PowerPoint 2003 and 2002 for Windows

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