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Insert autoshapes

Insert an autoshape

To add an autoshape to your document,

  1. switch to the Insert tab of the top toolbar,
  2. click the Shape icon Shape icon at the top toolbar,
  3. select one of the available autoshape groups: basic shapes, figured arrows, math, charts, stars & ribbons, callouts, buttons, rectangles, lines,
  4. click the necessary autoshape within the selected group,
  5. place the mouse cursor where you want the shape to be put,
  6. once the autoshape is added you can change its size, position and properties.

    Note: to add a caption within the autoshape make sure the shape is selected on the page and start typing your text. The text you add in this way becomes a part of the autoshape (when you move or rotate the shape, the text moves or rotates with it).

Move and resize autoshapes

Reshaping autoshapeTo change the autoshape size, drag small squares Square icon situated on the shape edges. To maintain the original proportions of the selected autoshape while resizing, hold down the Shift key and drag one of the corner icons.

When modifying some shapes, for example figured arrows or callouts, the yellow diamond-shaped Yellow diamond icon icon is also available. It allows you to adjust some aspects of the shape, for example, the length of the head of an arrow.

To alter the autoshape position, use the Arrow icon that appears after hovering your mouse cursor over the autoshape. Drag the autoshape to the necessary position without releasing the mouse button. When you move the autoshape, guide lines are displayed to help you position the object on the page precisely (if a wrapping style other than inline is selected). To move the autoshape by one-pixel increments, hold down the Ctrl key and use the keybord arrows. To move the autoshape strictly horizontally/vertically and prevent it from moving in a perpendicular direction, hold down the Shift key when dragging.

To rotate the autoshape, hover the mouse cursor over the rotation handle Rotation handle and drag it clockwise or counterclockwise. To constrain the rotation angle to 15 degree increments, hold down the Shift key while rotating.


Adjust autoshape settings

To align and arrange autoshapes, use the right-click menu. The menu options are:

  • Cut, Copy, Paste - standard options which are used to cut or copy a selected text/object and paste a previously cut/copied text passage or object to the current cursor position.
  • Arrange is used to bring the selected autoshape to foreground, send to background, move forward or backward as well as group or ungroup shapes to perform operations with several of them at once. To learn more on how to arrange objects you can refer to this page.
  • Align is used to align the shape left, center, right, top, middle, bottom. To learn more on how to align objects you can refer to this page.
  • Wrapping Style is used to select a text wrapping style from the available ones - inline, square, tight, through, top and bottom, in front, behind - or edit the wrap boundary. The Edit Wrap Boundary option is available only if you select a wrapping style other than Inline. Drag wrap points to customize the boundary. To create a new wrap point, click anywhere on the red line and drag it to the necessary position. Editing Wrap Boundary
  • Shape Advanced Settings is used to open the 'Shape - Advanced Settings' window.

Some of the autoshape settings can be altered using the Shape settings tab of the right sidebar. To activate it click the shape and choose the Shape settings Shape settings icon icon on the right. Here you can change the following properties:

  • Fill - use this section to select the autoshape fill. You can choose the following options:
    • Color Fill - select this option to specify the solid color you want to fill the inner space of the selected autoshape with.

      Color Fill

      Click the colored box below and select the necessary color from the available color sets or specify any color you like:

    • Gradient Fill - select this option to fill the shape with two colors which smoothly change from one to another.

      Gradient Fill

      • Style - choose one of the available options: Linear (colors change in a straight line i.e. along a horizontal/vertical axis or diagonally at a 45 degree angle) or Radial (colors change in a circular path from the center to the edges).
      • Direction - choose a template from the menu. If the Linear gradient is selected, the following directions are available: top-left to bottom-right, top to bottom, top-right to bottom-left, right to left, bottom-right to top-left, bottom to top, bottom-left to top-right, left to right. If the Radial gradient is selected, only one template is available.
      • Gradient - click on the left slider Slider under the gradient bar to activate the color box which corresponds to the first color. Click on the color box on the right to choose the first color in the palette. Drag the slider to set the gradient stop i.e. the point where one color changes into another. Use the right slider under the gradient bar to specify the second color and set the gradient stop.
    • Picture or Texture - select this option to use an image or a predefined texture as the shape background.

      Picture or Texture Fill

      • If you wish to use an image as a background for the shape, you can add an image From File selecting it on your computer HDD or From URL inserting the appropriate URL address into the opened window.
      • If you wish to use a texture as a background for the shape, open the From Texture menu and select the necessary texture preset.

        Currently, the following textures are available: canvas, carton, dark fabric, grain, granite, grey paper, knit, leather, brown paper, papyrus, wood.

      • In case the selected Picture has less or more dimensions than the autoshape has, you can choose the Stretch or Tile setting from the dropdown list.

        The Stretch option allows you to adjust the image size to fit the autoshape size so that it could fill the space completely.

        The Tile option allows you to display only a part of the bigger image keeping its original dimensions or repeat the smaller image keeping its original dimensions over the autoshape surface so that it could fill the space completely.

        Note: any selected Texture preset fills the space completely, but you can apply the Stretch effect if necessary.

    • Pattern - select this option to fill the shape with a two-colored design composed of regularly repeated elements.

      Pattern Fill

      • Pattern - select one of the predefined designs from the menu.
      • Foreground color - click this color box to change the color of the pattern elements.
      • Background color - click this color box to change the color of the pattern background.
    • No Fill - select this option if you don't want to use any fill.

Autoshape Settings tab

  • Opacity - use this section to set an Opacity level dragging the slider or entering the percent value manually. The default value is 100%. It corresponds to the full opacity. The 0% value corresponds to the full transparency.
  • Stroke - use this section to change the autoshape stroke width, color or type.
    • To change the stroke width, select one of the available options from the Size dropdown list. The available options are: 0.5 pt, 1 pt, 1.5 pt, 2.25 pt, 3 pt, 4.5 pt, 6 pt. Alternatively, select the No Line option if you don't want to use any stroke.
    • To change the stroke color, click on the colored box below and select the necessary color.
    • To change the stroke type, select the necessary option from the corresponding dropdown list (a solid line is applied by default, you can change it to one of the available dashed lines).
  • Wrapping Style - use this section to select a text wrapping style from the available ones - inline, square, tight, through, top and bottom, in front, behind (for more information see the advanced settings description below).
  • Change Autoshape - use this section to replace the current autoshape with another one selected from the dropdown list.

To change the advanced settings of the autoshape, right-click it and select the Advanced Settings option in the menu or use the Show advanced settings link at the right sidebar. The 'Shape - Advanced Settings' window will open:

Shape - Advanced Settings

The Size tab contains the following parameters:

  • Width - use one of these options to change the autoshape width.
    • Absolute - specify an exact value measured in absolute units i.e. Centimeters/Points/Inches (depending on the option specified at the File -> Advanced Settings... tab).
    • Relative - specify a percentage relative to the left margin width, the margin (i.e. the distance between the left and right margins), the page width, or the right margin width.
  • Height - use one of these options to change the autoshape height.
    • Absolute - specify an exact value measured in absolute units i.e. Centimeters/Points/Inches (depending on the option specified at the File -> Advanced Settings... tab).
    • Relative - specify a percentage relative to the margin (i.e. the distance between the top and bottom margins), the bottom margin height, the page height, or the top margin height.
  • If the Lock aspect ratio option is checked, the width and height will be changed together preserving the original shape aspect ratio.

Shape - Advanced Settings

The Text Wrapping tab contains the following parameters:

  • Wrapping Style - use this option to change the way the shape is positioned relative to the text: it will either be a part of the text (in case you select the inline style) or bypassed by it from all sides (if you select one of the other styles).
    • Wrapping Style - Inline Inline - the shape is considered to be a part of the text, like a character, so when the text moves, the shape moves as well. In this case the positioning options are inaccessible.

      If one of the following styles is selected, the shape can be moved independently of the text and positioned on the page exactly:

    • Wrapping Style - Square Square - the text wraps the rectangular box that bounds the shape.

    • Wrapping Style - Tight Tight - the text wraps the actual shape edges.

    • Wrapping Style - Through Through - the text wraps around the shape edges and fills in the open white space within the shape. So that the effect can appear, use the Edit Wrap Boundary option from the right-click menu.

    • Wrapping Style - Top and bottom Top and bottom - the text is only above and below the shape.

    • Wrapping Style - In front In front - the shape overlaps the text.

    • Wrapping Style - Behind Behind - the text overlaps the shape.

If you select the square, tight, through, or top and bottom style you will be able to set up some additional parameters - distance from text at all sides (top, bottom, left, right).

Shape - Advanced Settings

The Position tab is available only if you select a wrapping style other than inline. This tab contains the following parameters that vary depending on the selected wrapping style:

  • The Horizontal section allows you to select one of the following three autoshape positioning types:
    • Alignment (left, center, right) relative to character, column, left margin, margin, page or right margin,
    • Absolute Position measured in absolute units i.e. Centimeters/Points/Inches (depending on the option specified at the File -> Advanced Settings... tab) to the right of character, column, left margin, margin, page or right margin,
    • Relative position measured in percent relative to the left margin, margin, page or right margin.
  • The Vertical section allows you to select one of the following three autoshape positioning types:
    • Alignment (top, center, bottom) relative to line, margin, bottom margin, paragraph, page or top margin,
    • Absolute Position measured in absolute units i.e. Centimeters/Points/Inches (depending on the option specified at the File -> Advanced Settings... tab) below line, margin, bottom margin, paragraph, page or top margin,
    • Relative position measured in percent relative to the margin, bottom margin, page or top margin.
  • Move object with text controls whether the autoshape moves as the text to which it is anchored moves.
  • Allow overlap controls whether two autoshapes overlap or not if you drag them near each other on the page.

Shape - Advanced Settings

The Shape Settings tab contains the following parameters:

  • Line Style - this option group allows to specify the following parameters:
    • Cap Type - this option allows to set the style for the end of the line, therefore it can be applied only to the shapes with the open outline, such as lines, polylines etc.:
      • Flat - the end points will be flat.
      • Round - the end points will be rounded.
      • Square - the end points will be square.
    • Join Type - this option allows to set the style for the intersection of two lines, for example, it can affect a polyline or the corners of the triangle or rectangle outline:
      • Round - the corner will be rounded.
      • Bevel - the corner will be cut off angularly.
      • Miter - the corner will be pointed. It goes well to shapes with sharp angles.

      Note: the effect will be more noticeable if you use a large outline width.

  • Arrows - this option group is available if a shape from the Lines shape group is selected. It allows to set the arrow Start and End Style and Size by selecting the appropriate option from the dropdown lists.

Shape - Advanced Settings

The Text Padding tab allows to change the autoshape Top, Bottom, Left and Right internal margins (i.e. the distance between the text within the shape and the autoshape borders).

Note: this tab is only available if text is added within the autoshape, otherwise the tab is disabled.

Shape - Advanced Settings

The Alternative Text tab allows to specify a Title and Description which will be read to the people with vision or cognitive impairments to help them better understand what information there is in the shape.

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