PowerPoint Morph – A Guide
PowerPoint Morph is a feature which, as the name suggests, allows you to transition your slides by morphing, meaning to seamlessly transform something into another form or shape. This can be a picture, a graphic or even text. All the newer versions of Microsoft PowerPoint allow you to try out this amazing function.
Interested? Well, you’ve come to the right place. Below, you’ll find a step-by-step guide to what PowerPoint Morph is, what advantages it can give you, and exactly how to use it.
So, What Is PowerPoint Morph?
The Morph transition is included in newer PowerPoint versions and was intended as a response to Keynote’s Magic Move slide transition. It allows you to animate slide transitions easily and with an incredibly professional result. PowerPoint does the hard work of calculating how to modify the objects you want to morph from slide to slide. You can create unbelievably good animations in a short time using this feature without any programming knowledge or in-depth computer skills. The Microsoft website has great examples of such transitions; below, we set out exactly how to use PowerPoint Morph.
Which PowerPoint Versions Support This Feature?
The Morph feature is included with PowerPoint in the Office 365 subscriber version. PowerPoint 2019 users and PowerPoint Web users can also benefit from Morph.
Not all versions offer the same functionality – below, we list some of the differences.
You can create and play back morph transitions in the following programs:
- PowerPoint Office 365 (Version 1511 and higher)
- PowerPoint Office 365 Mac (Version 15.19 and higher)
- PowerPoint for the Web
- PowerPoint 2019
- PowerPoint 2019 for Mac
You can play morph transitions with the following programs:
- PowerPoint 2016 (Click and Go Installation) Version 1511 (Build 16.0.4358.1000) and higher
- PowerPoint 2016 (Microsoft Installer) Build 16.0.4358.1000 and newer (Office Update Installation)
Create and play back morph transitions in these mobile apps (NB: only possible with a 365 subscription from Microsoft):
- PowerPoint for Android
- PowerPoint for iOS
- PowerPoint Mobile for Windows
In the following versions, fade transitions are shown instead of morph transitions:
- PowerPoint 2007
- PowerPoint 2010
- PowerPoint 2013
- PowerPoint 2011 for Mac
- PowerPoint 2016 for Mac
If you have PowerPoint 2016 and want to play back PowerPoint Morph effects, you’ll need to install the following Office updates at a minimum:
What’s the Point of PowerPoint Morph?
If you work in many business and scientific fields, you will be used to creating meaningful, serious presentations, and maybe see any animation as a distraction which might trivialize your presentation. There should always be a theme running through your presentation with or without animation; but sometimes animation matching the content of the presentation can make it easier to for an audience to understand that content. The occasional morph transition can liven up a presentation and provide visual back-up for your points.
Creating animations in PowerPoint used to be terribly time-consuming with older program versions. You had to create huge numbers of individual animations, then merge them to create an animation in the presentation. You also had to know exactly what you were doing! All this manual work is basically done by PowerPoint with the Morph feature. Morph makes it possible to create animations with a single click, if you’ve set up the start and finish points correctly; the program does all the calculations for you.
As we said above, it’s totally possible for those without much computer and programming experience to make wonderful morph transitions! These transitions make your presentation more dynamic, and you can focus your audience’s attention on the points you want to underline. Transitions created by the Morph function can look almost like video films. You’ll need one of the newer PowerPoint versions, though; this PowerPoint function is not downward compatible.
How Many PowerPoint Slides Will I Need to Morph?
If you want to use the morph function, you basically need two slides. The first should contain the elements from which the animation is to be created; the second must contain an object the Morph feature recognizes from the previous slide. This object acts as a common pivot point. It can be something as simple as a square which morphs into a rectangle. It’s possible, although a bit more complicated, to morph multiple objects. To see what morphing does in practice, take a look at the simple shapes animated below.
Step-by-Step Guide to Creating Your Own Morph Transition!
First, create an empty slide via the Start tab; just click on the Slides tab, and select the New Slide option.
Now insert a shape, such as a rectangle, into the empty slide; you can do this by simply selecting, say, a rectangle in the Drawing tab (in the predefined shapes). Drag the selected shape into the empty slide using the left mouse button (hold the key down) or the touch pad on your laptop. Because we in the West read from left to right, it helps to have an animation follow the same route, so it’s best to position the rectangle somewhere on the left. An eye-catching background color helps to accentuate the effect of your Morph transition.
You can select this in the Quick Format Template area, under the Drawing tab. Once you’ve got your initial slide, you will now need a second slide with the end result of your morph. The easiest way to link the shapes so that the Morph feature understands the link, especially if you’ve changed the background color, is to duplicate the slide, then edit the shape. To duplicate your slide, right-click within the slide and select the Duplicate Slide command. You’ll now have two slides, each with a rectangle and identical background color. The first slide is the initial slide, which you leave as it is. You now need to edit the second slide to how you want the morph to look at the end.
If you want your rectangle to morph into a square, for example, just click on it on the second slide, and drag the corners to make your square. In terms of impact, it can help to move the square more to the right, to give the impression of movement in your transition. You can obviously resize the square as you please.
Maybe choose a boldly different color (in the Quick Format Template area)? It’s all totally your choice!
To apply the morph effect to your slides, first click on the Transitions tab, then click Morph in the Transition to End Slide group. The preview shows whether you’ve managed it. Clicking into Slide Show mode allows you to enjoy your morph effect to the full!
Use the arrow keys to move from one slide to the next slide: left arrow key to go to the previous slide, right arrow key to move to the next slide.
Morphing Complex Graphics
You can also morph graphics with the new PowerPoint effect. Say you want to morph the flipping of an image. To create a base slide with an image, first insert an empty slide. Next, go to the Insert tab. In the Images group, either select an image already stored on your PC or search for a suitable online graphic by opening the Online Graphics icon and selecting the Bing search for images.
Select your chosen image with a mouse click and then click Insert. The image is now integrated into the PowerPoint slide; again, as above, transitions work best if you start on the left and finish to the right. That’s your base slide created; now to create your destination slide.
Copy the slide, then to create a mirror image in the second slide, select the image. In the Start tab, select the Drawing category and the Arrange icon. A menu will open and give you the option to rotate the image; just click Mirror Image Horizontally. You can also move the image to a different area of the slide to make even more impact.
You can create an even more eye-catching effect by changing the saturation of the background too. To do this, select the category Customize and the icon Format Background in the Design tab. An overview opens allowing you to change the saturation; selecting different levels for your slides will give the effect of fading or intensifying when you run your morph transition.
PowerPoint Morph Effect Can’t Work Without a Shared Element!
Morphing is only possible when you have at least one element in common on both your original slide and the end slide. If you add elements to either slide independently of the other, they won’t be included in the morph effect (but will still be visible when “their” slide plays).
It is possible to morph several elements at the same time, provided that the elements are present on both the base and end slides. On the Microsoft help page about morphing, they use the planets as an interesting example.
Insert an empty slide as above, and add several different shapes. Arrange the shapes as you want and choose a good background color for contrast. Black can be great where you want your shapes to “pop”.
Then simply copy the slide and make the desired alterations on the second slide. You can change color, size, rotation, etc. Give it a go – it’s easier than you think!
You Can Also Morph Text
Morphing isn’t just limited to graphics and shapes – you can morph texts too! If you want to morph text, it needs to be in text fields or placeholders and, importantly, once you’ve selected Transition and then Morph, you need to go to the Effect Options box (to the right of all the options for Transitions) and select Characters from the drop-down list. The default setting here is Objects, which is great for all the shapes and images above but doesn’t work with text.
The process is pretty much the same as above. Insert an empty slide and add a text field. Type in your starting text (for example, you could put in an acronym which then morphs into its long form). Choose your own colors and backgrounds.
Duplicate the slide and make the changes you want. Click Transitions then Morph, making sure to select Characters from the Effect Options drop-down. Simple!
It really pays to have a go – it’s so much simpler than you might imagine! And with a bit of practice, you can master other morphing effects, such as morphing individual characters and creating 3D animations (such as rotations)!
PowerPoint Morph – Conclusion
The PowerPoint Morph function allows the ordinary user to create fabulous transitions. These can loosen up a presentation whilst focussing the audience’s attention brilliantly. It’s easy to use even without programming and PowerPoint knowledge, saving you time and making your presentations look dynamic and professional.
Why not give it a go?