Home Tutorials Downloads Professional Services Project Management Links Search Feedback About Me

Pan & Zoom Captions/Subtitles Accessible PPT Master Chef Dynamic PPT Fine Touches Content KISS Mouse Overs Perfect Line Up PPT to Video/DVD Repository Can You See? 3D Transitions Resource Analysis

Creating 3D Transitions in PowerPoint on the Cheap

By Glenna Shaw

Crystal Graphics makes a wonderful add-in to PowerPoint for 3D transitions.  However, whether it's because of cost, restricted access or some other reason, not everyone can use 3rd party add-ins.

What many folks don't realize is that since Exit Animations were added to PowerPoint (2002 or higher) and MAC PowerPoint 2004 it's quite easy to create your own 3D transition effects without any additional software or hardware.

First create your presentation and save it.  Then follow these easy steps to create your own 3D transition.

  1. Decide which 2 slides your want to put the transition between.

  2. Go to the second slide and click on Insert, Duplicate Slide.

  3. You should now have three slides that you're working with:

  4. Edit the transition slide (Slide 2) to remove all animated text elements.  You want the slide to look like it will AFTER THE TRANSITION and BEFORE animations are played.

  5. Save Slide 1 and Slide 2 as JPG (image) files by clicking on File, Save As, and change the Save As Type to JPG.  Name them Pic1.jpg and Pic2.jpg

  6. Change the Background of Slide 2 to Solid Black.

  7. Insert the picture of Slide 1 on Slide 2.

  8. Add a Custom Animation to Pic1 with the following settings:

  9. Insert the picture of Slide 2 on Slide 2.

  10. Add a Custom Animation to Pic2 with the following settings:

  11. Now add transition settings to Slide 2 and Slide 3 by clicking on Slide Show, Slide Transition

  12. Save your file to a new name so you'll have a copy of the original in case you need it.

Run your slideshow and you should now have a what appears to be a "flipping slide" transition.

You can experiment with different effects to create your own 3D transitions.  You can also combine Exit Animations with the existing transitions or simply insert a black slide between slides and apply existing transitions to create a new effect.  You're only limited by your imagination.

A Word of Advice: 3D transitions will have the best impact when used sparingly.  Limit their use to when you want to introduce a new topic, recapture the audience's attention or make a particular point.


This presentation (847 Kb zip) contains nine different 3D transition examples.

What to share examples you come up with?  Send them to me at glennashaw (at) and I'll post them here.

Many thanks to PowerPoint MVP Ute Simon for her helpful feedback.

Was this tutorial helpful?  Please feel free to share your comments &/or suggestions.


Copyright 2006 Glenna Shaw