Software & Apps MS Office How to Draw Freehand in PowerPoint Adjust a slideshow for added effect using the drawing and inking tools by Brenna Miles Writer Brenna Miles is a technology writer with a B.A. in Business Management and HR Management. She's been writing about technology for 6+ years. our editorial process Twitter LinkedIn Brenna Miles Updated on July 07, 2020 MS Office Powerpoint Word Excel Outlook Tweet Share Email PowerPoint has been used as the ultimate slideshow creator for many years. It's easy to use and includes many unique tools for customizing your slideshows, including the various drawing tools. Once you know how to draw in PowerPoint using those tools, it's easy to add emphasis to an image, much-needed flair to your presentations. The instructions in this article apply to PowerPoint 2019 and 2016, as well as PowerPoint for Microsoft 365. Hero Images/Getty Images PowerPoint Drawing Tools & Inking Tools Inside PowerPoint, you'll find several different tools, including the classic drawing tools and improved inking tools. Some of the most commonly used include: Shapes: Located in the toolbar, this is the traditional tool that allows you to choose from different shapes or draw your own using lines.Pen tools: Use many different pen types to create your own custom, freehand shapes.Ink to text: Use Ink to Text to turn your written word into text within your PowerPoint presentation.Ink to shape: Draw shapes, then turn them into text shapes using this tool. Each of these tools come in handy for different purposes as you create your slideshow. To use the Pen tool and Inking tools, you'll need to have a touch-enabled device like a tablet or smartphone. You can use either a smart pen or your finger on these devices. How to Draw a Traditional Shape in PowerPoint Drawing a shape or line in PowerPoint is simple in this traditional method. To get started, open your PowerPoint presentation. Drawing a Shape Using the Freeform Tool Select Insert > Shapes. To draw a freeform shape, select the Freeform icon. Draw a shape by moving your cursor around the screen, selecting where you want your points. You can also hold your mouse or finger down to scribble. Once you're ready, complete your shape by connecting the last point to the beginning point. PowerPoint will automatically fill the shape and bring up the Format section in the ribbon. Draw a Shape Using the Scribble Tool Select Insert > Shapes. To draw a scribbled shape, select the Scribble icon. Hold down your mouse or trackpad to draw a scribble in your PowerPoint slide. The ends don't have to connect. Once completed, the Format section will appear. Use this section to change the design of your shape. Draw Freehand Shapes Using PowerPoint 2019 and 365's Pen Tool PowerPoint now allows users with touch-enabled devices to use tools such as the Pen tool to create custom shapes, text and more. To get started, open a new or existing presentation. Select Draw from the ribbon. Here, you'll see a wide range of pen options, including pencil, highlighter, and marker. Select a pen from the available tools. You can also select the pen again to see available formatting options such as color, style, and line thickness. Start drawing inside your presentation using your finger or smart pen. Don't like what you drew? Select the Eraser tool to erase all or part of your drawing. Just like the other pens, the eraser offers a few different options such as stroke, small, medium, and segment patterns. Draw Freehand Shapes Using PowerPoint 2016's Pens Tool Simply open a presentation, select Review > Start Inking, then select your pen tool of choice and draw your freehand shape or text. The pen tool is great for circling important parts of your presentation, drawing arrows for emphasis, underlining important points or just adding custom design to your slides. How to Turn Ink to Text Using PowerPoint 365's Draw Tool Using PowerPoint's Ink to Text tool, you can turn handwritten notes into text quickly. Simply open a presentation to get started. Using the Draw tool, write your text using the ink tool of your choice. Select Ink to Text from the toolbar. Draw a lasso around the words you wish to turn to text. PowerPoint will automatically turn the words into text, giving you spelling options just in case they missed. Turn Ink into Shapes Using PowerPoint 365's Draw Tool You can draw quick shapes in the same way you create text using the Ink to Shape tool. Open a presentation and begin in the same way you did for the Ink to Text tool. Create your shape using your pen tool of choice. Select Ink to Shape from the toolbar. Draw a lasso around the shape you wish to change and watch as PowerPoint does the hard work for you. It even suggests shapes just in case they created the wrong one. Draw Custom Lines & Shapes Using the Ruler Tool For drawing your own lines and shapes without the help of the Ink to Text or Ink to Shape tools, you can use the Ruler tool as the perfect, built-in straightedge. In the Draw tool, select Ruler from the toolbar. Drag the ruler around until you're happy with the placement. Once your ruler is placed, select the pen tool of your choice and create your line by tracing the ruler's edge. When you're done, simply select Ruler again to remove it from your screen.