Transparent Images for PowerPoint
The orange ball and shadow in the PowerPoint file can be placed
anywhere and the shadow will be see through!!!
bounce.zip (psd, tif, & ppt file)
I have never seen this technique mentioned anywhere, nor do you
have to use it simply for PowerPoint creating perfect alphas can
be used in many applications: PowerPoint, Flash, Director and others.
This technique has saved me countless hours, especially where I
have had the same 10 objects being repositioned on various slides
in different layouts.
Open Photoshop (make sure your file is either 72 or 96 dpi)
and draw your object (you can also find an object and cut away the
aspects you do not want). Once your object has been drawn link all
of your layers excpet the background (click the window to the immediate
right of the eye so you have a chain link in all except the selected
layer and the background). Next click on the small circled arrow
in the upper left corner of the Layers palette and select Merge
The next 4 steps (4-7 on the quick reference chart below), are
merely to reduce file size. Select All (Ctrl+A), Copy (Ctrl+C),
Create a new file (Ctrl+N), and Paste (Ctrl+V).
Once pasted into the new file you can quit out of your old one,
you will no longet need it. Hold the Ctrl while you click on the
thumbnail in your new file. Go to the main menu bar and choose Select-Modify-Contract
and pick 1 pixel. In essence you are creating a little bleed to
work with. Sometimes more is required, however I find 1 or 2 to
Press the letter "D" on your keyboard (no Ctrl rquired)
to default your colors to black and white.
Select the Channels area on the layers panel, and select the "Save
selection as channel" icon at the bottom of your layers (see
below). Alpha 1 will appear.
Finally save your file as a .tif and make sure you select Alpha
Channels. Import into PowerPoint.
Sometimes your file make look odd in the edit mode of PowerPoint,
however in slide show mode I have never seen a problem. Also the
more sharp the edge (less blurry) they better this feature seems
As always below is the quick reference chart. If you are uncertain
about a step, have questions, would like to share your technique,
or simply say hello- I would love to hear from you.
||Draw your object
or Cut away the area you wish to be transparent
||Link all of the layers except the background
||Merge linked layers
||Select All (Ctrl+A)
|| New (Ctrl+N)
||Ctrl+Click on the layer's thumbnail
||From the main menu bar click on select-modify-contract
Hit the "D" to default your colors to b/w
||Pull the Channels area up (located on the layers
||Save selection as channel
||Save as .tif with alpha layer on
||Insert image into PowerPoint
p.s. In the zip file I included the psd and the ppt template for
this tutorial. Feel free to use it or any elements from it in your