Here we’ll look at making our slides come alive by adding a little bit of animation and some transitions between the slides. The same techniques allow you to add small, subtle animations to a presentation to being able to create an animated movie!
So, here we’re going to cover two main things: transitions and animations.
- Apply to all slides
- Effect types
- By paragraph
- Multiple effects
Below we’ll look at two situations, applying transitions and animations to presentations and also to a comic.
Transitions – presentation
First, let’s add a simple transition between our presentation slides. Go to the “Slide” menu then select “Change transition…”.
This will open the Animations sidebar. By default, there’s no transition between the slides.
Click on “No transition” and select “Fade”.
We also have the option of controlling the speed of that transition effect, by moving the speed slider. We can also apply this effect to all the slides, which saves us having to add the same effect manually on each slide.
Here’s a little GIF to show the difference between no transition and the Fade transition.
Transition – comic
This time let’s add a different effect to the comic slides. First of all, I only want to add it to the comic slides, so I select the first slide (slide 4) in the slide sorter and then holding down the shift key, I select the last slide (slide 7).
Then I go to Change transition as before, if the animation sidebar isn’t open. Then I select “Slide from right” from the list of effects.
Here’s what the Slide from right transition looks like:
Adding animations – presentation
Now, let’s look at animating things on the slides. As I said earlier, in presentations you don’t want too many animations going on, so here we’ll look at a very common way to show your points one by one.
First of all, select what you want to animate, in this case the bullet points.
Go to the “Insert” menu and select “Animation”.
This will open the same animation menu as we saw earlier with the transitions.
By default, it gives the bullet points we’ve just selected the animation effect “Fade in”.
If you want to reveal each bullet point, point by point, the easiest way is to select the “By paragraph” option. In present mode, this will then fade in each point, one by one, after a click of the mouse button. This is a great little function, that means you don’t have to animate each piece of text individually.
Here’s what it looks like:
Animating specific points in different ways
If you have some points and you want to animate them in different ways, then you’ll have to do that individually. For example, here I’ve decided that I want the last point to be animated in a different way to make some kind of point.
I’ve created a text box for each bullet point, which means I can animate that specific piece of text and not affect the others.
Here I’ve animated the first 4 points in the same way. In reality, I probably would have made one text box with the first four points together and used the “by paragraph” function as described above, but this is to demonstrate a point.
As you can see, in the Animations sidebar, I can see each animation for each point. It’s also in order of you setting the animations, so make sure you start at the top and work your way down.
For the last point I’m going to add a different animation, so I select that text box.
Then select a different animation effect by clicking on “Fade in” at the bottom of the list. Here I’ve changed it to “Fly in from top”.
Here’s how it looks:
Animations – comics
Here let’s take the same animation process we did above to the next level by animating some comic characters in different ways. Here we’re going to cover 3 areas:
- Adding different effects
- Controlling when they happen
- Adding more than one effect to an object
First, start off with all the objects on your slide. Here I’ve added a picture of a cat and dog, two speech bubbles, and within those speech bubbles I added text boxes with the words.
I usually group each speech bubble and text box together, so it acts as one object when we come to animate them (see my post on grouping objects).
My plan is to introduce the cat coming from off the screen to the left, then saying hello. Then the dog appears from the right and says hi.
So I need to animate the cat first. Click on the cat, go to the “Insert” menu and select “Animation” to open the sidebar. Then select the “Fly in from left” effect.
Now I want the speech bubble to appear. Click on the speech bubble then click on “+Add animation” in the sidebar.
Let’s give it a “Fade in” animation.
Controlling when the animation happens
This time I don’t want to have to click the mouse button, to make the animation happen, I want it to happen once the previous animation (the cat appearing) has finished. So, I click on the “On click” drop down menu and select “After previous”.
So, now when I click the mouse button, the cat will happen and then the speech bubble saying hello will appear.
Adding more than one animation to an object
Now I want the speech bubble to fade out before the dog appears. So I add a second animation to the cat’s speech bubble. Click on the speech bubble and click “Add animation”.
This time select “Fade out”.
Again I want this to happen automatically after the previous animation, so I select “After previous”.
Then we do the same for the dog, but this time select the “Fly in from right” effect.
Then we add the dog’s speech bubble effect. Note, we can control the speed of these animations by changing the speed slider towards slow or fast.
Previewing your animations
Here we can see the full sequence of animations. To preview your animations so far, press the “Play” button.
If you’re using animations or transitions in your presentations, I would suggest keeping it simple and consistent across the slides. When these were first added to Powerpoint, many people went mad with things appearing from all four corners of your slides, which at the end of the day is distracting to the audience and unless it adds to your message then I would keep to the basics.
If however, you’re using them to make fun things like comics, stories, ‘animated’ films, then of course let your creative juices flow!
eBooks available on Drive, Forms, Sheets, Docs, Slides, and Sheet Functions:
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- "Beginner's Guide to Google Docs" - iBooks Store / Kindle store
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- "Google Sheet Functions - A step-by-step guide" - iBooks Store / Kindle Store