How to Emulate Website Overlay Technique in PowerPoint (PowerPoint 2013)

Website overlay is widely used to give users focused attention on something. This technique is often adopted to promote a newly launched product, get users to sign up for newsletters, showcase a gallery of photos, alert users of system error or prompt users for action. Isn’t it great to use this overlay technique in your presentation, especially if you want to conduct a system demonstration or training?

When I was tasked with developing the training materials, I want to create something that actually emulates the real system so the users will have a better understanding of how the system works in real situation. Yes, the system developers have implemented this overlay technique mainly to prompt users for action and display pop-up information. In this very basic example, I’ll show you how to imitate the overlay effect when a user clicks a link that invokes a pop-up login screen.

1.  In a blank slide, insert the screenshot of the main system.


2.  The image I’ve cropped appears to be borderless, so I’d like to give it some shadow effect. Click the image. On the Format tab, click Picture Effects and select Shadow. Choose any shadow effect that you like. I’ve chosen the first, Offset Diagonal Bottom Right under Outer.


3.  On the Home tab, under Drawing, select the Rectangle shape and draw a rectangle that completely covers the main image.


4.  On the Home tab, under Drawing, select Shape Fill and select a gray color tone.


5.  Then, click Shape Fill again and select More Fill Colors.


6.  In the Colors dialog box, click the Custom tabAt the bottom, adjust the Transparency strength to 40% and click OK. If you want the overlay to look darker, adjust the strength to 30% or less.


7.  To get rid of the border line, click Shape Outline and select No Outline.


8.  Insert the second image into the slide and position it to the center of the first image.


9.  Draw another red rectangle shape and position it over the Sign In text.


10.  Now that you have all the images and object in place, it’s time to animate them! Click the red rectangle. On the Animations tab, select Wheel from the animation gallery.


Note: Be sure to have the animation pane readily accessible. It will come in handy later on when you need to make animation adjustments. On the Animations tab, in the Advanced Animation group, click Animation Pane. The pane will appear on the right side of the screen.


11.  By default, the wheel effect has a two-second medium speed, which is pretty slow. To speed things up, in the Animation Pane, click the rectangle drop-down arrow and select Timing.


12.  In the Wheel dialog box, click the Timing tab and select 5 seconds (Very Fast) from Duration.


13.  Click the Effect tab and select Hide on Next Mouse Click from After animation. Click OK.


14.  Click the transparent gray rectangle. On the Animations tab, select Fade from the animation gallery.


15.  Click the second image. On the Animations tab, select Fade from the animation gallery.


16.  In the Animation Pane, click the picture drop-down arrow and select Start with Previous.


17.  Run the slide in Slide Show mode by pressing the F5 button.

And there you have it, the overlay effect in PowerPoint! Try this in your next presentation.


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