PowerPoint – Inserting Pictures


Adding pictures can make your presentations more interesting and engaging. You can insert a picture from a file on your computer onto any slide. PowerPoint even includes tools for finding online pictures and adding screenshots to your presentation.

Optional: Download our practice presentation.

Watch the video below to learn more about inserting pictures in PowerPoint.

To insert a picture from a file:

  1. Select the Insert tab, then click the Pictures command in the Images group.
    Clicking the Pictures command
  2. A dialog box will appear. Locate and select the desired image file, then click Insert.
    Choosing a picture to insert
  3. The picture will appear on the currently selected slide.
    The inserted picture

You can also click the Pictures command in a placeholder to insert images.

Inserting a picture from a content placeholder

Inserting online pictures

If you don’t have the picture you want on your computer, you can find a picture online to add to your presentation. PowerPoint offers two options for finding online pictures.

  • Bing Image Search: You can use this option to search the Internet for images. By default, Bing only shows images that are licensed under Creative Commons, which means you can use them for your own projects. However, you should go to the image’s website to see if there are any restrictions on how it can be used.
    inserting an image from Bing
  • OneDrive: You can insert an image stored on your OneDrive. You can also link other online accounts with your Microsoft account, like Facebook or Flickr.
    inserting an image from OneDrive

To insert an online picture:

  1. Select the Insert tab, then click the Online Pictures command.
    Clicking the Online Pictures command
  2. The Insert Pictures dialog box will appear.
  3. Choose Bing Image Search or your OneDrive. In our example, we’ll use Bing Image Search.
    searching for an image
  4. Press the Enter key. Your search results will appear in the dialog box.
  5. Select the desired image, then click Insert.
    selecting a bathroom scale image
  6. The image will appear on the currently selected slide.
    The inserted picture

You can also click the Online Pictures command in a placeholder to insert online images.

Inserting an online picture from a content placeholder

When adding images, videos, and music to your own projects, it’s important to make sure you have the legal right to use them. Most things you buy or download online are protected by copyright, which means you may not be allowed to use them. For more information, visit our Copyright and Fair Use lesson.

Moving and resizing pictures

Once you’ve inserted a picture, you may want to move it to a different location on the slide or change its size. PowerPoint makes it easy to arrange pictures in your presentation.

To select a picture:

Before you can modify a picture, you’ll need to select it.

  • Simply click to select a picture. A solid line will appear around a selected picture.
    Selecting a picture

To resize a picture:

  • Click and drag the corner sizing handles until the picture is the desired size.
    Resizing a picture

The corner sizing handles will resize a picture while preserving its original aspect ratio. If you use the side sizing handles, the image will become distorted.

To rotate a picture:

  • Click and drag the arrow above an image to rotate it right or left.
    Rotating an image

Hold the Shift key on your keyboard when rotating an image to snap it to angles in 15-degree increments.

To move a picture:

  • Click and drag to move a picture to a new location on a slide.
    Moving a picture

To delete a picture:

  • Select the picture you want to delete, then press the Backspace or Delete key on your keyboard.

You can access even more picture formatting options from the Format tab. We’ll talk more about these options in our lesson on Formatting Pictures.

The Format tab

Inserting screenshots

Screenshots are basically snapshots of your computer screen. You can take a screenshot of almost any program, website, or open window. PowerPoint makes it easy to insert a screenshot of an entire window or a screen clipping of part of a window in your presentation.

To insert screenshots of a window:

  1. Select the Insert tab, then click the Screenshot command in the Images group.
  2. The Available Windows from your desktop will appear. Select the window you want to capture as a screenshot.
    Selecting a window to capture
  3. The screenshot will appear on the currently selected slide.
    The inserted screenshot

To insert a screen clipping:

  1. Select the Insert tab, click the Screenshot command, then select Screen Clipping.
    Clicking Screen Clipping
  2. A view of other open windows will appear. Click and drag to select the area you want to capture as a screen clipping.
    Taking a screen clipping
  3. The screen clipping will appear on the currently selected slide.
    The inserted screen clipping


  1. Open our practice presentation.
  2. Select the last slide.
  3. Use the Online Pictures command to insert a picture of your favorite form of exercise.
  4. Resize your picture so it takes up a majority of the slide without covering the title.
  5. When you’re finished, your slide should look something like this:
    Inserting Pictures Challenge 1
  6. Insert a new slide with a Title Only layout.
  7. In the Title placeholder, type Learn More at Fitness.gov.
  8. Open http://www.fitness.gov in your browser, then insert a screen clipping of the website onto the slide you just created.
  9. When you’re finished, your slide should look something like this:
    Inserting Pictures Challenge 2