If you have Office 365 — now called Microsoft 365, confusingly — you might have noticed that after several years without photos, they’ve come back! Actually, they aren’t the same photos, but better quality ones.
It’s a relief to be able to find photos right within PowerPoint without an add-in. (More about add-ins at the end.) Users definitely missed the photos during the hiatus.
There are also “cutout people” and stickers. I am in love with the cutout people!
The interface has changed to put all of the images in one place, including icons.
If your settings restrict updates to only every few months, you may not see them yet. Stock images are not available on the Mac as of this writing, but I expect them to roll out soon.
This is “premium” content, but even the free online version of PowerPoint has the feature, but with fewer images. You just might find what you need!
Everything in one place
When you choose Pictures on the Insert tab, you’ll see a drop-down list letting you choose from your computer (This Device), Stock Images, and Online Pictures. If you choose Online Pictures, you’ll go to Bing Search. Be aware that most online pictures are copyrighted and not legal for you to use, although Bing does try to find legal pictures for you.
If you’re using PowerPoint on the Web (formerly PowerPoint Online), you’ll also have an option to find images on OneDrive.
In this post, I’ll focus on what happens when you choose Stock Images since that is the new feature.
What you get with stock images
When you choose Stock Images, you’ll see 4 tabs. The first is Stock Images and it’s a library of gorgeous photos. You can search to find the one you want. In the first iteration, there are over 8,000 images and Microsoft will be adding more.
Besides the Search box, there’s a row of topics. For example, if I choose “Determination,” I see this.
Just click an image and choose Insert — or double-click an image — to insert it.
Tip: You can select more than one image at a time and click Insert to insert all the selected images onto one slide.
Click the Icons tab to insert icons. These are not new, but they’ve been collected together into this new combined interface. I wrote a blog post about them when they were new, which you can read here.
Inserting “cutout people”
Cutout people are people with no background — or a transparent background. What’s so cool about these is that they’ve photographed each model (all named) in many positions so you can show changes of emotion or create an avatar and use it throughout a presentation. These types of images are hard to find, so they’re a treasure.
Here’s what you see when you click the Cutout People tab.
So, you can do something like this…
You can search by keywords here, too. I just wish that when you found someone, you could hover over the picture to discover the model’s name so you could then find other photos of the same model.
Finally, there are stickers. You can see them here. There are a few characters and multiple positions for each one.
I must admit that I don’t get the point of these. From my boomer perspective, they’re only for children, but I’ve been told that millennials like them for informal presentations. They’re definitely meant to be used with a sense of humor.
I rarely use add-ins but there are a number of them that add images. Examples are Pexels, Noun Project (for icons), and Pickit. To find add-ins, go to the Insert tab and click Get Add-Ins. I recommend searching for both images and photos.
Here’s what you see if you search for photos.
When you find one that you want, click Add.
These add-ins let you find images from within PowerPoint. They open a task pane where you can search for — and insert — images.
Some add-ins have upsells for accessing more images.
Are you using the new images?
Was this a valuable addition for you? Please leave a comment and use the Share buttons below to let others know about this new feature.
I love the new photos! They look so clean and professional. Now I won’t have to worry about looking for images elsewhere. Thanks for the update!
I love the stickers! They’re really so cute. I didn’t know PowerPoint has this. Thank you for this blog post.
Thanks Ellen – I hadn’t even noticed this addition yet! To me, the photos and cutout people look great, and seem really useful.
By the way, when using the cutout people, you might like this 2-minute video that shows how to easily put the character into a realistic setting.