A Guide to Anchor Points and Rotation in PowerPoint

This week’s tutorial is dedicated to those PowerPoint ninjas who really want to master their rotation game. We’re going to be talking about anchor points and rotation in PowerPoint.

What Are Anchor Points in PowerPoint?

Anchor points are sometimes referred to as rotation points. They’re essentially a set and dedicated point for your slide element (like shapes, images or icons). This dedicated point does not move, nor rotate. However, it serves as the basis of where you want to move or rotate the specific element.

I know it’s a little confusing, but as I explain in the video, the elements on our PowerPoint slide rotate because there is a set and dedicated anchor point in the middle of that specific element.

(If you’re still confused, then please check out the video for a visual illustration).

The Problem

Well, the way PowerPoint sets its anchor points can be problematic. If we want our shape to be rotated in a very specific way so that the bottom part doesn’t move, but the top part does, there is no setting on PowerPoint that can let us do that.

BUT, there is a cool trick you can do to force PowerPoint to look for another anchor point.

The Solution

The trick is to expand the element and to force the anchor point to move into the middle.

Do I mean you should increase the size of the element?

No. I don’t.

So what do I mean?

Check out the video to find out.

When to Play Around with Anchor Points

You should consider this technique when you:

  • Have a specific PowerPoint element that you want rotated in a specific way (e.g. an arrow where you want to move only the arrow head and not its base).
  • Create a circular pattern for a set of elements on your PowerPoint slide.

What Will This Tutorial Cover?

This PowerPoint tutorial will teach us how to:

  • Identify the anchor points for our PowerPoint elements.
  • Learn how to expand elements to force PowerPoint to look for a new anchor point in order to ensure that the element rotates it the way we want it to.
  • Learn how to create circular patterns with the technique of identifying and expanding anchor points.
Yousef "Yoyo" Abu Ghaidah

Yousef "Yoyo" Abu Ghaidah

Yousef "Yoyo" Abu Ghaidah is a PowerPoint ninja that founded Slide Cow, a learning platform for all things PowerPoint, presentations and public speaking. When he's not designing slides or giving presentations, he's on another coffee run.
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