Contemporary Photo Album

Tutorial – PowerPoint 2010 Basics Lesson 2: Starting a Presentation from a Template

This is Lesson 2 in a series of tutorials on Microsoft PowerPoint 2010. If you would like to start from the beginning of the series go to Lesson 1(Table of Contents at the bottom of the article). Today’s tutorial will show you how to use the templates that are built in to PowerPoint to start a new presentation.

If there is one thing that I try to instill in people that I teach is you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. When it comes to making good presentations, PowerPoint gives you a lot of sample material that more than likely will cover anything you would like to do in a presentation. They do this in the form of templates and it is one of the better advantages that PowerPoint has over other presentation tools.

To access templates, we click on the “File” tab on the ribbon toolbar. Click on the word “New” and you will see the screen pictured below. You will notice that the window is broken down into two sections. “Available Templates and Themes” are basically templates already downloaded with the default installation onto your computer. “ Templates” are templates that are available to be downloaded to your computer via the web.

New Presentation Window

One thing you will notice is that there are numerous types of templates. PowerPoint has a lot of capabilities beyond the basic slideshow. Notice the “Diagrams” template. PowerPoint is one of the simplest ways to create an organization chart for your business. For the purpose of today’s lesson I want to use the “Sample templates” located in the top half of the page. When I double-click this I get the screen you see below.

Sample Templates

The reason I want to start with these sample templates is they represent some of the most common formats for a presentation and they also give you little cheat notes to help you learn more about using PowerPoint. Let’s choose the “Contemporary Photo Album” template. When you choose this template you will see a screen similar to the one below. Notice that it already comes with several ready made slides over on the left. We can delete these later but for now it would be a good idea to click each of the slides on the left and notice the instructions they give you regarding how to add your own photos and styles.

Contemporary Photo Album

Now, the first step in making a presentation be your own is to SAVE IT! The last thing you ever want to do is lose all those wonderful changes you make. The last part of this lesson I want to show you how to save this template into a folder that you can easily find later. On the ribbon toolbar, find the tab that says “File”. Click “File” and the first option you should see below it is “Save”. Click “Save”. This will open up a window, which if you use Windows XP, will be opened to your “My Documents” folder by default. If you use Windows 7 it will open to the “Documents” library. Either way this is a really good place to save your presentation because it is easy to find a file in this location.  At the bottome of the “Save As” window you will see two fields. One says “File Name”. This is where you can type a name for your presentation. Let’s just call it “My Photos” just for fun. Below that field you will see “Save as type”. We won’t get into this today but just so you know, this is where you can save the presentation into earlier versions of PowerPoint or into a different format altogether. For today’s purpose though let’s just click the “Save” button in the lower right corner.

In Lesson 3 we will look at adding slides into the presentation and doing more to make our own. Keep checking back as new content will be continually added. Thanks for reading Techie Buzz!

Table of Contents – PowerPoint Basics

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Darrin Jenkins

Darrin is an IT manager for a large electrical contractor in Louisville KY. He is married and has 3 kids. He loves helping people with their technology needs. He runs a blog called Say Geek!