Tips for Memorial PowerPoint Presentations

Remembering a special person in your life

An ongoing PowerPoint presentation can be a caring part of a memorial service. Present photos of your loved one and all the happy times that they shared with you and others. Use these tips as a guide to getting organized and creating a wonderful memory for your family and friends to watch again and again.

Information in this article applies to PowerPoint 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010; PowerPoint for Office 365, PowerPoint for Mac, and PowerPoint Online.

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Collect Important Memories

Sit down, collect your ideas, and make a checklist of what to do and what to gather for this milestone occasion.

Think about what you would like to share with family as well as guests. Be creative as you make a list of things to include. Make it a true trip down memory lane by collecting:

  • Photos as a child or young person.
  • Photos with a loving spouse during the courting stage and through the years that followed.
  • Photos of important dates in their life such as graduation, first job, first child, or special vacations.
  • Precious mementos such as the program from a high school play or a dried flower from a wedding bouquet.
  • A love letter to or from their partner.
  • A favorite poem.
  • A favorite religious passage.
  • Special songs, such as oldies music, classical music, or hymns.

Scan photos, letters, poems, and other items if you do not have digital copies. Store these digital copies in a separate folder along with the PowerPoint presentation file.

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Create a Digital Photo Album Quick and Easy

Photo album templates in PowerPoint

PowerPoint's Photo Album tool makes it quick and easy to add one or several photos to your presentation at the same time. Effects such as frames and captions are ready and available to enhance the presentation.

Or, use a photo album template to quickly create a polished, professional photo slideshow.

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Compress Photos to Reduce Overall File Size

Compress the images in a PowerPoint slideshow or photo album to reduce the overall file size of your final presentation with the Compress Photos option. An added bonus is that you can compress one photo or all the photos in the presentation. By compressing the photos, the presentation will run smoothly.

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Add Colorful Backgrounds or Design Themes

PowerPoint design themes

Whether you want to go the easy route and simply change the background color of the presentation or decide to coordinate the whole show using a colorful design theme is a simple matter of a few clicks.

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Use Transitions to Smoothly Change From One Slide to Another

PowerPoint transitions

Make your slideshow move smoothly from one slide to another by applying transitions. These are the flowing movements that appear while the change is happening. If your presentation has different topics (such as childhood, marriage, and raising children), apply a different transition to each section to set it apart. Otherwise, limit the number of transitions, so that the audience is focused on the show and not on the transition.

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Play Soft Music in the Background

Add audio to a memorial presentation

Play the loved one's favorite songs or music in the background while the slideshow is in progress to bring back happy memories. Add more than one song to the presentation and start and stop on specific slides for effect. Or, have one song play throughout the whole slideshow.

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Automate the Memorial Presentation

Set up your slideshow so that it loops continuously during the memorial service or reception.

  1. Go to Slide Show.
  2. Select Set Up Slideshow.
  3. Choose Browsed at a kiosk (full screen).
  4. Select OK.

The presentation will continue playing until you press the ESC key.

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Give It a Test Run

Rehearse timings in PowerPoint

No show would ever go live without a rehearsal. PowerPoint has a slick tool that helps you automate your slideshow. While you preview the presentation, tell PowerPoint when you want the next thing to happen (next slide, next picture to appear, and so on).

  1. Go to Slide Show and select Rehearse Timings.
  2. Practice running the slideshow. Click on a slide when you want to go to the next slide or start an animation.

PowerPoint records these timings and it will run by itself smoothly.