Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Automatically Formatting Graphics and Shapes.

Automatically Formatting Graphics and AutoShapes

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated February 27, 2010)

1

When creating a document that includes graphics and/or AutoShapes, you can spend quite a bit of time formatting. Getting graphics and their surrounding text to appear "just right" can be very time consuming. After a couple of formatting sessions, you may long for a way to set some sort of defaults that Word will automatically apply to all your graphics and AutoShapes.

When it comes to graphics in general, there is no way to set any formatting defaults. The one exception is that if you are using Word 2002 or Word 2003 you can set the default wrapping style by following these steps:

  1. Choose Options from the Tools menu. Word displays the Options dialog box.
  2. Make sure the Edit tab is selected. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Edit tab of the Options dialog box.

  4. Use the Insert/Paste Pictures As drop-down list to set your desired insertion style.
  5. Click OK.

Beyond this (or if you are using earlier versions of Word) you can record a macro that applies your common graphic formatting options. This macro could then be used to format other graphics after you insert them in your document.

You have more options when it comes to AutoShapes. Word allows you to define default formatting settings for AutoShapes by following these steps:

  1. Insert an AutoShape that you typically use.
  2. Format the AutoShape as you normally would.
  3. Select the AutoShape by clicking on it once.
  4. On the Drawing toolbar, choose Set AutoShape Defaults from the Draw menu.

These steps set defaults for the current document. If you want to set the defaults for all documents based on a particular template, load the template itself and perform the steps. Similarly, if you want to set the defaults for all documents, load the Normal.dot template and perform the steps.

You should realize that setting the AutoShape defaults in this manner does not affect all formatting settings for subsequent AutoShapes. In general, these steps set the defaults that appear on the Colors and Lines tab and the Layout tab of the Format AutoShape dialog box. Settings on other tabs, such as size, aspect ratio, and rotation, are not affected and must be set on a shape-by-shape basis.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (74) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Automatically Formatting Graphics and Shapes.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Opening Multiple Documents at Once

Word's Open dialog box provides many of the same file management functions as Windows Explorer does. One of the functions is ...

Discover More

Breaking a Document Link

Word allows you to link external information into your documents. If you no longer need to maintain the active link, you can ...

Discover More

Using Different Colors with Tracked Changes

When changes are made in a document with Track Changes turned on, each author's changes are normally shown in a different ...

Discover More

Comprehensive VBA Guide Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) is the language used for writing macros in all Office programs. This complete guide shows both professionals and novices how to master VBA in order to customize the entire Office suite for their needs. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2010 today!

More WordTips (menu)

Displaying Thumbnails and Full-Size Images

Sometimes images can be just too big to display in a document. Instead you may want to display a smaller, thumbnail-size ...

Discover More

Selecting Drawing Objects

Word allows you to create all sorts of drawings using a wide assortment of tools. When you need to take an action upon those ...

Discover More

Understanding Fill Effects

Want to fill a drawing shape with more than just a color? Word allows you to use all sorts of fills, as described in this ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 4 - 2?

2013-11-10 06:28:47

Edward

GREAT job because this is unexplored territory


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the menu interface (Word 97, Word 2000, Word 2002, or Word 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.