How to Flip Things in OpenOffice

By Alan Sembera

The "Flip" feature in Apache OpenOffice makes it easy to create mirror images of pictures and text in your documents. You can flip text horizontally, for example, so that it reads from left to right, or you can flip it vertically, so that the top becomes the bottom. You can also flip over your text and images without creating a mirror image using OpenOffice's rotation feature.

Flip an Image

Step 1

Insert or paste your image into any OpenOffice application.

Step 2

Click the image to select it.

Step 3

Select "Flip" from the "Format" tab in OpenOffice Writer or Calc, and then select either "Flip Horizontally" or "Flip Vertically." In Impress, right-click the image to find the Flip option. In Draw, the Flip option is under the Modify tab.

Flip Text

Step 1

Copy your text to the clipboard.

Step 2

Open a new document in OpenOffice Draw.

Step 3

Click the "T" icon on the Drawing toolbar at the bottom of the program window.

Step 4

Click anywhere in your Draw document, and then paste in the copied text.

Step 5

Click the "Modify" tab, select "Convert," and then select "To Bitmap." Draw converts the text into a bitmap image.

Step 6

Select "Flip" from the Modify tab, and then select either "Flip Horizontally" or "Flip Vertically."

Step 7

Copy the image of the flipped text to your clipboard, and then paste it back into your original document.

Rotate Image or Text

Step 1

Select the image or text you want to rotate. If you're using OpenOffice Writer and you want to rotate text, paste the text into a new Draw document to complete the rotation, and then copy it back when you are done.

Step 2

Click the circular "Rotate" icon on the Picture toolbar if you are using OpenOffice Writer or Calc to rotate an image. In Impress or Draw, simply click the image or text a second time so that the box handles turn red.

Step 3

Grab one of the red handles on the corner of the image or text, and then drag the handle in a circular motion to rotate the item.

Tips & Warnings

  • The Rotate icon is not visible by default in OpenOffice Calc. To make it visible, click the down arrow on the Picture toolbar, select "Visible Buttons," and then select "Rotate."