PowerPoint interactions #2: Scrolling Filmstrip

Can you create dynamic Articulate Presenter output just by using PowerPoint? Yes indeed…


Here’s template #2 in the series. If you’ve looked at #1, the 3D Carousel, you’ll be pleased to hear that this one is a lot less hassle when it comes to swapping out the images to propagate the different states of the template.

So first, View the Presentation. Screenshot of the output

You’ll probably have seen something like it before – but this is just PowerPoint, with no Flash, Engage, or programming required. You just need a basic familiarity with PowerPoint and Articulate Presenter.


So what’s happening here?

It works like this:

  • Like with example #1, it’s a series of 5 hyperlinked PowerPoint slides, output as an Articulate Presenter presentation.
  • Because the hyperlinks are in the PowerPoint, Articulate navigation is bypassed. By using Articulate’s branching feature, this is presented as a “single slide” in the Articulate presentation.
  • There are several images laid out and simply animated in PowerPoint using Motion Paths to give the illusion of “scrolling” from left to right. When the series of slides reaches the end, the hyperlink returns it to the beginning.

OK? If you want to jump in and see what’s going on for yourself, download the PPTX file and the full instructions. Use this template as you wish (but of course I would be interested to know how).


As with example #1, I used my old pics of “the Big Five” in a 16:9 format. This time, I created 5 “thumbnail” versions at 160×90 pixels, and 5 “full size” versions at 400×225. I saved them off as PNG files, numbering them 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 for easy reference.

I didn’t want to play around with the image transparency, so I imported the images directly, giving them a PowerPoint border, reflection effect etc. I wanted to get the images to “feather” to black at the edges, so I used a colour block created in PowerPoint, with a gradient fill of transparent to black – really great feature!


Motion Paths in PowerPoint are a little difficult to work with accurately – try making the same one twice, and you’ll see what I mean. The trick here is to create one Motion Path animation on one image, then copy the image so it retains the exact same motion path. After this, it’s a matter of positioning the image using nudges with the arrow keys (the grid can also work), and then changing out the image – so you have a different image in a different location, but with the exact same movement.

It takes some playing around and previewing to make sure the image to the left ends up in exactly the original position of the image to the right at the end of the animation – but as they say, “no pain no gain”!

The other animations I added were just to add to the effect of movement – an emphasis effect for the central image when it comes to rest (“Flash Bulb”), an entrance effect for the main image after that (“Grow and Turn”), and a straightforward Fade entrance for the display text.

Custom Animation paneControlling the animation and when it happens (“With previous” or “After previous”) is done using the  Custom Animation Pane ( it appears when you click Animation toolbar > Custom Animation).

This is like a basic “timeline” feature in PowerPoint – there are no keyframes as such, but it does give you a certain amount of control. Note that you can select multiple animations using the Ctrl key, and change their type and their timing all at once.

So there I had it – an animation shifting the images across the screen, and displaying a larger version with display text.


If you’ve seen example #1, this is where things get a lot easier – there’s just the one set of images to change out.

It’s a simple matter of duplicating a slide, and right-clicking on each image to change it by one slot in your sequence – replacing image 5 with image 1, then image 4 with image 3, image 3 with image 2, and so on. Note that there’s a duplicate on the left end – this is to allow for the “travel” of the row when the animation takes place.


There are a couple of potential traps:

  • Don’t group the shapes to move them around. You’ll lose all of your individual animations…
  • Watch the file size – you may need to play around with the Articulate image Quality settings a little.



  • Easy to edit.
  • No need for Flash or other authoring tools.
  • No need for programming skills.


  • A bit of time is required to swap out the images.
  • The animation is a bit clunky.

Again, whatever you do with this – have fun! And if you need something like this done to order, please contact me.

COMING NEXT: Free template #3: Wave Carousel

2 thoughts on “PowerPoint interactions #2: Scrolling Filmstrip

  1. Brilliant! These are so simple in design, yet I know and understand the complexity it took to create them. Fabulous ideas. Excellent work! And most of all thank you for sharing.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s