Ever see a color in your Publication, an object, or a favorite picture and wish you knew what it was so that you could apply it to other items in your publication? You can! Ever wish there was an easy way to grab all of the formatting off of one object and just paint it onto another one? Well…there is!
The “Eyedropper” and “Format Painter” are two tools in Publisher that help you easily capture colors and formatting from one object and apply it to other objects as you wish.
The “Eyedropper” Tool
Using the Eyedropper tool, you can sample color from anywhere in the publication document until you find the perfect color for you, grab it, and apply it to another object that you feel deserves an opportunity to wear that color, too.
Where’s this Eyedropper tool located?
You can find this tool in several locations depending on what you wish. to apply color to.
Fill Color …
Line Color …
Font Color …
Shadow Color …
3-D Color …
How to Use it
Let’s say you want to grab a color out of an image in your publication and apply that color as a fill to a shape or object.
1. Select the shape or object you want to apply the desired color to
2. Drop down the Fill color toolbar
3. Select “Sample Fill Color”
a. The Cursor will change to an “Eyedropper”
4. Left click and drag the cursor around until the large zoomed display is focused on the color you want
5. Release the mouse
The color will be applied to the shape or object you selected.
How you can find out the color value of this desired color –
A color’s value is its ID#, so often you may find it useful to have this handy. The good news is that now that you have grabbed a sample of the color you wanted, this color will appear in the MRU of the Color toolbar dropdown. If you hover over this color swatch, it’s value will appear!
Also, the other good news is that now that this color is in your MRU, you can access it easily and apply it to other shapes and objects in your publication as you wish.
The “Format Painter” Tool
This handy tool will do just what it says – grab formatting off of one object and paint it onto another like object. It comes in really handy when you desire to make the formatting in your publication consistent or when you just want to apply similar formatting from one object to the next. No longer will you have to spend extra time applying formatting to each object individually if you don’t want to.
Where’s the Format Painter tool located?
The Format Painter is located on the standard toolbar:
How to Use it
Just about all formatting can be copied from one object to another like object using format painter.
Let’s say you want to copy the fill, line color, and shadow effect currently applied to a rectangle autoshape in your publication to an oval autoshape.
1. Select the rectangle autoshape
2. Select Format Painter
a. The Cursor will change to a “paintbrush” when it is over an object that the formatting can be painted onto
3. Click onto the oval autoshape
The formatting that is currently applied to the rectangle is applied to the oval shape:
You can also use format painter to paint text formatting into another object–
1. Select the text with desired text formatting in it (in this example, the text within the rectangle shape)
2. Select the Format Painter icon from the Standard Toolbar
3. Left Click and drag cursor over all of the text you want to apply the text formatting onto
I use these tools ALL the time when I want to coordinate the formatting of my publications, and I hope you find them handy when you want to easily apply consistent color and formatting throughout yours. Happy formatting !
Software Design Engineer in Test II
About the contributor: Mwanza Russell is a Software Development Engineer in Test on the Publisher team. She has worked for Microsoft for 9 years and believes that life without color and formatting just isn’t life at all.