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Artistic Effects in MS Office

I can’t speak for everyone, but when I’m using pictures in my documents, e-mail messages, spreadsheets or presentations, I’m looking to make an impression.

While a picture in its own right can be a very powerful message, sometimes it would be nice to have that same picture presented in a different manner, maybe as a pencil sketch, a chalk sketch, an image seen through glass or even a photocopy.

It’s definitely possible that an adjustment of this type applied to a plain old picture may make what was pretty good even better.

With that in mind, I’d say that it’s definitely worth a minute or two to investigate the possibilities offered in Office 2010.

To explore the Artistic Effects choices, you’ll need to insert a picture into a file.

When the picture is selected, the Picture Tools Format tab will appear on the Ribbon.

In the Adjust section of the tab, you’re looking for the Artistic Effects button.


When you click the button, a palette of choices will open.


Each of these represents a different effect that you could choose to apply to your picture.

I found that the best way for me to choose, was to make sure that I had the picture placed so that it wasn’t under the palette. This allows me to see the changes as the Live Preview feature updates things.

You should be aware that within Artistic Effects, only one type will be applied at a time, so you won’t find a strange mixture of things happening as you test them out.

Oh, and FYI… should the unlikely situation occur where you don’t want to keep any of them the upper left corner is the None choice.

While there are lots of other adjustments we can make to our pictures via the Picture Tools Format tab this one is, in my humble opinion, one very cool addition to the lineup.

~ April