Important Before you spend a lot of time creating or customizing a slide master, you might clarify your goal first. If what you are trying to accomplish involves applying a color scheme, fonts, effects, layouts, or backgrounds, what you want to apply is a theme. To apply a theme to a presentation, see Apply a theme to your presentation.
Or if you want to create a PowerPoint template, a pattern or blueprint of a slide or group of slides that you save as a .potx file and then can reuse it over and over, see Create a PowerPoint 2007 template. PowerPoint template files contain themes and content that you place directly on a slide master.
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What is a slide master?
A slide master is the top slide in a hierarchy of slides that stores information about the theme and slide layouts of a presentation, including the background, color, fonts, effects, placeholder sizes, and positioning.
Every presentation contains at least one slide master. The key benefit to using slide masters is that you can make universal style changes to every slide in your presentation, including ones added later to the presentation. When you use a slide master, you save time because you don't have to type the same information on more than one slide. The slide master especially comes in handy when you have extremely long presentations with lots of slides.
Because slide masters affect the look of your entire presentation, when you create and edit a slide master or corresponding layouts, you work in Slide Master view.
A slide master in Slide Master view
Slide layouts associated with the slide master
For more details about slide masters, see What is a slide master?.
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Use multiple slide masters in your presentation
When you want your presentation to contain two or more different styles or themes (such as backgrounds, colors, fonts, and effects), you need to insert a slide master for each different theme.
For example, in the image that follows, there are two slide masters as you would see them in Slide Master view. Each slide master has a different theme applied to it. Each slide master owns the layouts beneath it. Any modifications or customizations made to those layouts belong to the associated slide master. All presentations have a slide master, whether you modify it directly or not. To apply more than one theme to a presentation, see Apply multiple themes to a presentation.
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Best practice for creating and working with slide masters
It is a good idea to create a slide master before you start to build individual slides, rather than after. When you create the slide master first, all of the slides that you add to your presentation are based on that slide master and the associated layouts. When you start making changes, make them on the slide master.
Also, if you create a slide master after you build individual slides, some of the items on the slides may not conform to the slide master design. You can override some of the slide master customizations on individual slides by using the background and text formatting features, but others (such as footers and logos (logo: A distinctive symbol that identifies you, your business, or your organization. It can combine a name, motto, and graphics.)) can be modified only in Slide Master view.
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Create and customize one or more slide masters
For each slide master that you want to create, do the following:
- Open a blank presentation, and then, on the View tab, in the Presentation Views group, click Slide Master.
- When you open Slide Master view, a blank slide-master with the default, associated layouts appears. If you want to add another slide master, do the following:
- Click a location in the slide thumbnail (thumbnail: A miniature representation of a picture.) pane where you want the new slide master to appear.
- On the Slide Master tab, in the Edit Master group, click Insert Slide Master.
Note In the slide thumbnail pane, the slide master is the larger slide image, and the associated layouts are positioned beneath the slide master.
- To create one or more custom layouts or to modify existing layouts, see Create a new custom layout.
- To add or modify placeholders in your layouts, see Add one or more content placeholders to a layout or Change a placeholder.
- To remove any of the built-in slide layouts that accompany the default slide master, in the slide thumbnail pane, right-click each slide layout that you want to delete, and then click Delete Layout on the shortcut menu (shortcut menu: A menu that shows a list of commands relevant to a particular item. To display a shortcut menu, right-click an item or press SHIFT+F10.).
- To apply a design or theme (theme: A set of unified design elements that provides a look for your document by using color, fonts, and graphics.)-based colors, fonts, effects and backgrounds, see Apply a theme to your presentation.
- To set the page orientation for all of the slides in your presentation, on the Slide Master tab, in the Page Setup group, click Slide Orientation, and then click either Portrait or Landscape.
- To add text that will appear as a footer at the bottom of all of the pages in your presentation, do the following:
- On the Insert tab, in the Text group, click Header & Footer.
- In the Header and Footer dialog box, on the Slide tab, select the Footer check box, and then type the text that you want to appear in the center-bottom of your slides.
- Click Apply to All.
- Click the Microsoft Office Button, and then click Save As.
- In the File name box, type a file name, or do nothing to accept the suggested file name.
- In the Save as type list, click PowerPoint Template, and then click Save.
- On the Slide Master tab, in the Close group, click Close Master View.
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