Using Drawing Guides in PowerPoint 2010

Drawing guides is a powerful hidden feature in PowerPoint 2010 and 2013 that you can use to make better designs in PowerPoint and perfect pixel designs. The guidelines and drawing guides in PowerPoint is not very intuitive tool but if we learn how to use it we can get the most out from this tool and help to make better PowerPoint presentation designs.

Here we will review how to use Drawing Guides in PowerPoint 2010 to adjust our objects, shapes, charts and tables in the slide design.

We have seen that the ruler plus the grid options in PowerPoint can help to align objects in the slide. However, the drawing guides let us configure a custom position where to align these objects beside the normal grid. For example, if we want to improve our master slide template and draw a space for the presentation title in a specific position then we can set the placement of the object manually or we can draw some guidelines on the screen.

Using Drawing Guides in PowerPoint 2010

By default, the drawing guides appear centered on the screen. However, the default guides aren’t very useful if they remain centered on the screen. We may wish to move the guidelines and eventually are more drawing guides to the slide.

To move the guidelines you can drag the horizontal and vertical guidelines to any desired position. In order to do this, put your mouse over the guideline to move and then click it before dragging.

guide lines powerpoint

Adding more vertical and horizontal guidelines to the PowerPoint slide

Now we will see how to add more guidelines to the slide. This is not very intuitive and you may need to check the help in order to figure how to use it, so here we will show you quickly how to add new guidelines to PowerPoint.

Adding new drawing guides

To add more guides on the screen, just click CTRL while dragging the drawing guide. This will make a guide to be duplicated and moved to any desired position.

add drawing guides powerpoint 2010

In this example above we have duplicated the drawing guide.

Removing drawing guides

To remove drawing guides in PowerPoint 2010, just move the drawing guide to the border of the slide. This will make the drawing guide to disappear and no longer visible on the screen.

Now, you can use the drawing guides to align any object on the screen. This can be very useful for example if you need to align shapes below titles, or any other object, SmartArt Graphic or chart to the slide and keep perfect pixel positions.

arrange objects screen guide lines powerpoint

2 comments on “Using Drawing Guides in PowerPoint 2010

  1. I have inadvertently deleted the horizontal drawing guide from my PPT presentation. Any idea how to reinstate it? (There are no other drawing guides to drag and hold CTRL)

    1. Hi Martin,
      Did you try to click View -> Guides checkbox? Otherwise you can try right click over the slide and then click Grid & Guides. Then in the dialog box make sure to check Display Drawing Guides on screen.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *