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Slide Design Idea – Negative Space Text

A very nice design strategy used in print design is creating callouts and bold graphics with text created from the negative space.

Negative Space Text-7

This same style is easily created within PowerPoint for slide design. The above example image was created in PowerPoint 2013 – here is how (thanks to Michelle on the TLC Creative design team for this tutorial).

By using PowerPoint Combine Shapes tools (Combine, Intersect, Fragment, Subtract), the process is pretty easy.

1. Add a shape of your choice – I am using a tall vertical bar.

Negative Space Text-1

2. Add a separate text box with the text of your choice and format as desired – I am using “TLC Creative” in a typography styled stacked layout.

Negative Space Text-2

3. Select both objects – Note: Select the RECTANGLE first.

4. With both objects selected, go to FORMAT >> Merge Shapes >> Combine

Negative Space Text-3

Negative Space Text-4

5. The text is “cut out” of the rectangle. Note: The text is no longer editable as it has been converted to a custom vector shape.

Negativce Space Text-5

6. The shape is editable, like any other shape. All shaping styling options are available: fill color, gradient fill, transparency, bevel, drop shadow and more.

To really see the effects, place an image behind the new shape. A few examples:

Negative Space Text-11Negative Space Text-9NegSpaceText-8

2 replies on “Slide Design Idea – Negative Space Text”

I am trying to do this on PPT 2010 but the “combine shapes” tool does not let me combine the text box with a shape. Is there a way to get around this or can this only be done with PPT 2013?

Unfortunately the Merge Shapes tools in PPT 2010 do not have all of the options that are available in 2013, this is one of them.

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