Change Black and White Pictures to Color in PowerPoint 2010 Slide Show

01
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Choose Picture for the Black and White to Color Animation

Change the slide layout to a blank PowerPoint slide
Change the slide layout to a blank PowerPoint slide. © Wendy Russell

Black and White to Color Trick is All in the PowerPoint Animation

Let's start with first things first. Take a look at the finished product of a Black and White to Color Photo Animation on a PowerPoint Slide.

  • Notes
    1. Optimizing your photos prior to inserting them into PowerPoint is always a "best practice". As a result, both the visual size and the final file size of the picture will ultimately create a smaller file size of your complete presentation.
    2. If you want your photo to cover the entire slide, optimize your photo to be 7.5 inches high by 10 inches wide (for a regular sized slide, not widescreen). PowerPoint 2010 will resize a larger photo automatically to fit the slide, but this is only a visual effect. The original file size will still remain intact.

      Also be aware that if your pictures are small, enlarging them (manually) to fit the slide will produce poor quality results. For the best image possible, always take your pictures using the highest resolution your camera will take.
    3. PowerPoint 2010 compresses all pictures by default. In the event that you did not first optimize your photos, this will be helpful in reducing the file size. Still, as mentioned earlier, optimization is the best choice.

Let's Get Started

In this example, we are going to use a picture that covers the whole slide. You may choose to do otherwise, but the process will be the same.

  1. Open a new presentation or a work in progress.
  2. Navigate to the slide where you wish to add this feature.
  3. Click on the Home tab of the ribbon, if it is not already selected.
  4. Click the Layout button and choose the Blank slide layout from the options shown. (Refer to the image above for clarification if needed.)
02
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Insert the Desired Color Picture onto the Blank Slide

Insert a picture onto a PowerPoint slide
Insert a picture onto a PowerPoint slide. © Wendy Russell

Start With a Color Picture

  1. Click on the Insert tab of the ribbon.
  2. Click on the Picture button.
  3. Navigate to the folder on your computer that contains the color picture and insert it.
03
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Convert Color Picture to Grayscale in PowerPoint

Convert a picture on the PowerPoint slide to "grayscale"
Convert a picture on the PowerPoint slide to "grayscale". © Wendy Russell

Is Grayscale the Same as Black and White?

The words "black and white picture", in most cases, is actually a misnomer. This term is a carry-over from a time when we did not have color pictures and what we saw we called "black and white". In reality, a "black and white" picture is made up of a multitude of gray tones as well as the black and the white. If the picture was truly black and white, you would see no subtleties at all. Take a look at the image on this short article to truly see the difference between black and white and grayscale.

In this exercise, we will be changing a color photo to grayscale.

  1. Click on the photo to select it.
  2. If the Picture Tools are not immediately shown, click on the Picture Tools button just above the ribbon.
  3. Click the Color button to reveal a variety of color options.
  4. In the Recolor section, click on the Grayscale thumbnail image.
  5. Insert a second copy of the photo following the same process as outlined on the previous page. PowerPoint will insert this new copy of the photo exactly on top of the grayscale photo, which is mandatory for this process to work. This new photo will remain as a color photo.

Related Article - Grayscale and Color Picture Effects in PowerPoint 2010

04
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Using the Fade Animation on the PowerPoint Color Picture

Use the "Fade" animation on the picture on the PowerPoint slide
Use the "Fade" animation on the picture on the PowerPoint slide. © Wendy Russell

Using the Fade Animation on the PowerPoint Color Picture

You may choose to use a different animation to the color picture, but I find, for this process, the Fade animation works best.

  1. The color photo should be resting exactly on top of the grayscale photo. Click on the color photo to select it.
  2. Click on the Animations tab of the ribbon.
  3. Click on Fade to apply that animation. (Note - If the Fade animation does not appear on the ribbon, click on the More button to reveal more options. Fade should be found in this extended list. (Refer to the image above for clarification.)
05
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Add Timings to the PowerPoint Color Photo

Open Timing settings for PowerPoint picture animation
Open Timing settings for PowerPoint picture animation. © Wendy Russell

Timing the Picture Animation

  1. In the Advanced Animation section of the ribbon, click the Animation Pane button. The Animation Pane will appear on the right side of your screen.
  2. In the Animation Pane click on the drop down arrow to the right of the picture listed. (Referring to the image shown above, it is called "Picture 4" in my presentation).
  3. Click on Timing... in the list of options shown.
06
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Using Time Delays to Convert Black and White Photo to Color

Set the animation timings for the black and white picture to fade to color on a PowerPoint slide
Set the animation timings for the black and white picture to fade to color on a PowerPoint slide. © Wendy Russell

Timing is Everything

  1. The Timing dialog box opens.
    • Note - In the heading of this dialog box (see image above), you will see Fade as this was the animation I chose to apply. If you chose a different animation your screen will reflect that choice.
  2. Click on the Timing tab if it is not already selected.
  3. Set the Start: option to With Previous
  4. Set the Delay: option to 1.5 or 2 seconds.
  5. Set the Duration: option to 2 seconds.
  6. Click the OK button to apply these changes.

Note - Once you have finished this tutorial, you may wish to play around with these settings to modify as needed.

07
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Example Picture Changing from Black and White to Color on PowerPoint Slide

Example of PowerPoint animation of black and white picture turning to color
Example of PowerPoint animation of black and white picture turning to color. © Wendy Russell

Viewing the PowerPoint Picture Effects

Press the shortcut key F5 to start the slide show from the first slide. (If your photo is on a different slide than the first, then once on that slide, use the keyboard shortcut keys Shift + F5 instead.)

Sample Animated Black and White to Color Photo

The image shown above is an animated GIF type of image file. It shows the effect you can create in PowerPoint using animations to make a picture appear to change from black and white to color as you watch.

Note - The actual animation in PowerPoint will be much smoother than this short video clip portrays.

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Your Citation
Russell, Wendy. "Change Black and White Pictures to Color in PowerPoint 2010 Slide Show." ThoughtCo, May. 9, 2017, thoughtco.com/change-bw-pictures-to-color-powerpoint-2767269. Russell, Wendy. (2017, May 9). Change Black and White Pictures to Color in PowerPoint 2010 Slide Show. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/change-bw-pictures-to-color-powerpoint-2767269 Russell, Wendy. "Change Black and White Pictures to Color in PowerPoint 2010 Slide Show." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/change-bw-pictures-to-color-powerpoint-2767269 (accessed December 13, 2017).