Amazing but true—once upon a time screenshots on the PC were made with the PrtScn key, which just takes a picture of whatever is on the monitor at that moment. Then along came several screen capture programs, and after a while, SnagIt became a standard tool for many of us. Now we can slice up the screen into segments or capture specific windows or snapshot menus, all with just a couple of clicks.
And the latest versions of SnagIt for PC provide such good editing tools that you can usually finish a shot (including everything from borders to balloons) without ever leaving the program. Since one requirement for great presentations is a strong visual component, SnagIt and PowerPoint make a terrific team — especially for creating courseware, tutorials, user manuals, and demos.
Three Surprising Ways to Use PowerPoint suggested using SnagIt’s “Send to PowerPoint” feature to build scrapbooks and galleries on the fly. But beyond that nifty trick, you can actually utilize SnagIt to build a presentation from scratch, setting up images and slides quickly, then completing in PowerPoint.
Start by setting up SnagIt to create a specific slide layout when you send images to PowerPoint. Just Select PowerPoint from the SnagIt toolbar, then choose Options. You’ll see a dialog box like this:
Set the options to “Insert into new slide,” then select a default “Slide layout.” Close the Options dialog, make your first screenshot, and when it comes up in SnagIt, choose PowerPoint from the toolbar and select “New presentation.” The image will be placed on a new slide, using the default format you selected.
I chose Title and Object in Options, and SnagIt created this slide for me, with the image already in the content box:
Now I just save the presentation, and from that point on, all I have to do after snagging a screenshot is click the PowerPoint button on the SnagIt toolbar. The program will keep sending my snags to new slides in the newly created presentation until I say stop. I can change the default slide layout by going back to Options, and/or I can change the destination of my snags by choosing a different presentation from the PowerPoint pull-down on the SnagIt toolbar.
Using SnagIt to set up slides while you capture is a great timesaver, since you are actually creating the basic presentation as you make the screenshots. When you have all the shots, just continue to develop the presentation in PowerPoint: apply a theme, add text to the screenshot slides, and create any additional slides needed for the presentation.
There are many other great ways to use SnagIt and PowerPoint together, so look for more tips in future posts. Meanwhile, check out this interesting interview with the SnagIt product manager. And there are additional ideas for using PowerPoint with other programs in the recent Power of Three post.