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I know you’ve all been thinking it – how on earth do I create a countdown timer in PowerPoint? It’s one of life’s great mysteries, baffling great minds for generations. Here at BrightCarbon we couldn’t hold out any longer and we’ve decided to share the secret! Read on and become part of a very exclusive group…
Okay so maybe a countdown timer isn’t the most exciting thing to make, however in the creation of a timer we can demonstrate a really neat trick you can apply to help make objects move and animate in more interesting ways, with the use of transparency.
So the simplest way of creating your own countdown timer is by creating a second hand and then rotating it using the ‘spin’ animation.
The first issue is that you can’t simply rotate the second hand as a single object, the animation assumes that the centre point of rotation is at the mid-point of the line. This is where our PowerPoint trick comes into play. In order avoid this issue regarding the centre point of rotation you will need to create another line, the same length of the initial line. Place this line at the end of the first line, group the two of them together and then make one of them 100% transparent.
So now you need to select the grouped lines, and animate them with the spin option.
Once you’ve selected the animation, along the top ribbon you can click on Effect options, changing the rotation to clockwise. Then to the right, change the duration of the animation to last 60 seconds (rather than the default 2).
You now have (a very basic) 1 minute countdown timer. You can now think of ways to bring the timer to life, using PowerPoint objects to make it look more like a clock, or whatever device you think would work well.
We’ve created a short video showing how to carry out the exercise below:
To see how just how far you can take this effect in PowerPoint, we have developed a more advanced 1 minute countdown timer – hand and stopwatch, this includes numbers and a ticking second hand counting down from 60 seconds. Click the link to download the PowerPoint file:
Let us know if you have any other ideas you’d like to see us create similar effects with! If you still want your countdown timer fix, have a look at this tutorial to make a countdown timer with a scrolling background.Leave a comment
Creative consultantView Vincent Thompson's profile
We've been using PowerPoint for a long time, a long time... Throughout our PowerPoint journey we've found a ton of functions in the presentation tool that match (and sometimes even beat) Photoshop. Don't believe me? Read on...
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