At BrightCarbon, we animate a lot in PowerPoint. Sometimes, it’s things as simple as a “Fade in” or “Zoom out”, sometimes it’s just a neat hack, but the rest of the time, it’s more complicated stuff that makes us look a bit like magicians. As we like to share the magic, here are a couple of tips that might make it easier for you when working with complicated animation sequences.

For the following to make sense, you will need to open the Animation Pane. You can access this through the ribbon. (Highlighted below)

ppt anim tips 1

The “After animation” setting

When you apply an animation effect to any object, you usually have a range of options you can play with, whether it’s timing, delay, or just exactly how the animation appears. You can access this by double-clicking on the effect in the Animation Pane, or right-clicking on it, then choose Effect Options. It will then open a window similar to this:

PPT anim tips 2

Here, we’re going to focus entirely on the ‘After animation’ option. It offers you four different options. Let’s have a look at how these might help you.

  • Don’t dim

This is the default setting and won’t have any effect on the animation after it is finished.

  • Colour change

Colour change allows you to change the colour of an object after the animation is finished. For example, you can have a blue circle fade in, or move along a motion path, then change its colour to orange. However, the colour won’t fade in and the change can appear a little brutal. Also, this will only work on single shapes, not on pictures or groups of shapes.

  • Hide after animation

This option will hide the selected object after the animation effect is finished. It can be really useful if you want to replace that object with another at the end of the sequence.

  • Hide on next mouse click

Similar to the previous option, this one will hide the object at the next click instead, which might help if you need to clear a slide to have other elements appear.

Zooming in and out of the timeline

When you work on complicated animation sequences, it can become tricky to adjust timings properly, especially if you’re using really short animations, or if you have a long sequence. The Animation Pane has a little hidden option that allows you to zoom in and out in the timeline, allowing you to adjust timings and animation in a more detailed way.

You can find it at the bottom of the Animation Pane, by clicking on the “Seconds” box. You will then have the option to either zoom in or out:

PPT anim tips 3

We hope these two quick tips might help you create some stunning animation sequences!

*Bonus Tip*

BrightCarbon’s very own PowerPoint add-in, BrightSlide, is the ultimate productivity tool for designers working in PowerPoint. Along with lots of other nifty features, we included a few pretty amazing animation tools. The My Animations animation library is a total game-changer – it’s an in-built animation library you can stock with all your favourite custom animation combinations to use again and again.

Currently in PowerPoint when you use the Animation Painter to copy and paste animations from one object to another, the latter loses any preexisting animations. Not so with BrightSlide’s Animation Painter+, pasted animations simply stack on top of preexisting animations meaning your hard work doesn’t go to waste! There are loads more tools just waiting to be discovered. Click here to see a full list of BrightSlide features.

If you’ve not had enough in your PowerPoint animation fix, why not have a look at some of these tips here, including learning how to imitate a mouse click!

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Written by

Ingrid Mengdehl

Senior design consultant

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