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PowerPoint FAQ: Image Copying Instructions

The following is a step-by-step set of instructions needed to insert graphics into your PowerPoint presentation or Word document.

These instructions are based on not being able to save an image as a jpg from the Internet, PDF file, etc., and therefore must be "captured" first. Keep in mind if you can click on the object to select it, all you need to do is to press CTRL-C to copy it then go to Step 3 to complete.

Keep in mind that this tutorial uses Microsoft Photo Editor as the graphics program. There are several others out there that will also work, but the steps might be slightly different for those. Also keep in mind that this references using JPG images. You can save the images as other file types (PNG, GIF, etc.) if you wish.

  1. Open the web site, PDF file, or other document that has the image you wish to capture. Make sure the entire image is visible on the screen. You might need to change the view setting to see the entire image.
  2. Press ALT-PRINTSCREEN to copy the image to the clipboard (computer's memory)
  3. Open Microsoft Photo Editor by clicking the START button, highlight Programs, then clicking Microsoft Photo Editor. The icon might be under the Microsoft Office Tools heading depending on which version of Windows you have.
  4. Click the Edit menu and click Paste as new image. If your screen capture copied other non-needed information, perform Step 5 below, otherwise skip to Step 8.
  5. Click the Select tool () and drag a rectangle around the part of the image you want to include. If you make a mistake, press the ESC key, re-click the Select tool and start over.
  6. Click the Edit menu and click Copy.
  7. Click the Edit menu and click Paste as new image.
  8. Click the File menu and click Save as, and save your image as a jpg. Make sure the Save as Type dropdown box shows "JPEG File Interchange Formatů".
  9. Close out Photo Editor and return to either PowerPoint or Word.
  10. Open your document or presentation, go to the desired slide or page, click the Insert menu, highlight Picture then click From File.
  11. Browse to your image you just saved and select it.

FYI - there is a slight difference between pressing both ALT-PRINTSCREEN and just the PRINTSCREEN key. The ALT-PRINTSCREEN captures the active window. If you had a dialog box open and wanted that image only, ALT-PRINTSCREEN will only capture that part, while PRINTSCREEN captures the entire monitor screen's view. If there is only one window open (blue title bar at top), then ALT-PRINTSCREEN essentially does the same as PRINTSCREEN. That is why I chose to use ALT-PRINTSCREEN in the instructions, since it will work for either image type.

Keep in mind that there are two other options:

  1. You can simply select the image, press CTRL-C to copy it, switch to PowerPoint or Word, and press CTRL-V to paste it. However, this usually results in much larger file sizes that necessary.
  2. You can also press CTRL-C to copy the image, switch to PowerPoint or Word, click the Edit menu, and select Paste Special. Select the image type you want to paste it as and click OK. This results in a smaller file size that Option #1 above, but still larger than saving the image as a JPG and inserting it in your file.