How to Skew an Image in PowerPoint

By Kevin Lee

Alter an image's properties and you can make a dramatic visual statement in a document or presentation. Skewing alters an image’s orientation and the angles between lines that form the image’s corners. The resulting image appears distorted and has a subtle three-dimensional effect. PowerPoint has no "Skew" button, but you can skew a PowerPoint image in real-time by altering a few 3-D rotation values.

Step 1

Right-click an image in one of your PowerPoint slides and click “Format Picture.” Click the arrow next to “3-D ROTATION” to expand that section and view a set of text boxes and buttons.

Step 2

Click the Left or Right button next to X Rotation and note how the image rotates slightly to the left or right. The Left button displays an arrow pointing to the right and the Right button has an arrow that points to the left. Click the Up or Down button next to Y Rotation, and the image rotates vertically around its vertical axis. These buttons also have arrows. Hold your mouse over any button if you’d like to see a button’s name.

Step 3

Click the Clockwise or Counter-Clockwise button next to Z Rotation if you’d like to rotate the image clockwise or counter-clockwise around its center. Continue clicking buttons until PowerPoint skews the image the way you like.

Tips & Warnings

  • When you click one of the X Rotation buttons, the text box next to X Rotation displays the image’s current angle of rotation along the X-axis. Text boxes next to Y Rotation and Z Rotation show similar values displaying angles of rotation around the Y-axis and Z-axis. You can also type values in the text boxes to rotate the image. For instance, if you type "20" in the X Rotation text box, PowerPoint rotates the image 20 degrees along the X-axis.
  • The “Distance from Ground” text box has a default value of “0 pt.” That value represents the distance between the image and the slide background. Change that value if you want to change the image’s position in 3-D space. The best way to see this effect is to experiment with different values.