How To Draw in Microsoft Word in 6 Steps (With Tips)

Updated September 27, 2023

Drawing in Microsoft Word is a useful way to create images and edit text with a pen. You can use the drawing tool to add a personal element to your documents or create images that aren't easily available. If you work with Word to make documents in your professional or personal life, learning more about the drawing feature and how it works can be beneficial.

In this article, we explain how to draw on Word and share some of the key benefits of doing this along with more general tips for using the application.

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How to draw on a Word document

Depending on the device and operating system you're using, some of these steps may be slightly different. These are the common steps you can follow to draw in Word:

1. Open the Word document

The first step to using the drawing feature in Word is opening the document you want to draw in by starting the program. To create a new document, you can select the blank document option or choose a template that works for your purposes. If you want to use the drawing feature to edit text, select a document that contains the writing you want to edit from the recently edited documents. You can also open a Word document by selecting the one you wish to edit from your files.

Related: How To Include Microsoft Office Skills on a Resume (With Examples)

2. Locate and select the draw tab

To use the drawing feature, open the draw tab in the Word document. The draw tab is at the top of the page, between the insert and layout tabs. When you open it, you see options for different drawing tools and methods in the toolbar.

Related: How To Unhighlight in Word in 5 Steps (Plus Useful Tips)

3. Choose your drawing tool

The best drawing tool for you depends on why you're using the drawing feature. Tools include the selecting tools, an eraser, pens, a pencil and the action pen. To draw shapes or other pictures, consider a pen or pencil. The highlighter is best for emphasizing certain pieces of text within a document. You can equip the eraser to remove drawings you no longer want and the selecting tool to select several items at once.

Related: Microsoft Certification Training: Process, Types and Benefits

4. Customize the drawing tool

Once you determine which drawing tool you want to use, you can customize it for your purpose. For example, you can use a pen and change the thickness and colors. A preview of the pen stroke shows you what it may look like when you use it on the page. You can also change the thickness and colors of the pencil and highlighter.

Related: How To Use Format Painter in Word (With Tips)

5. To edit text, choose the action pen

The action pen is a tool that allows you to edit the text as you may with pen and paper. The action pen is in the toolbox between the ink to shape option and the highlighter tool. To select it, click on the icon. You can use the pen to delete and move words, change the lines and select various sections. For more information about the gestures you can use with the action pen, click the arrow on the action pen symbol and select the option ink gesture "Help."

Related: How To Place Horizontal and Vertical Lines in Word Documents

6. Save and name your document

After you draw on your document, save your work by selecting the file option at the top left of the document. To save it with the same name and location, select the "Save" option above "Save as" and below "Info." To give your document a new name or location, choose the "Save as" option between the "Save" and "Print" options.

Related: A Guide To Finding Drawing Jobs (With Available Career Paths)

What are the benefits of drawing in Microsoft Word?

Depending on why you use Word and the device you have, there can be many benefits to using drawing in Word. These are some reasons drawing in Word can be useful:

  • Make creative and memorable materials: Using the drawing feature in Word allows you to add a personal element to your documents. For example, you might hand draw titles or other flourishes on documents you plan to distribute during a meeting or to clients.

  • Create specific or unavailable shapes: If you need a shape specific to your company or project but it isn't available in the menu of shapes, you can draw your own.

  • Communicate more information: Including visual information with textual information can make it easier for some to understand the information. Pairing the two can improve your ability to communicate information and demonstrate your meaning.

  • Use a digital pen to take notes or edit: Depending on the device you're using Word with, you may use a digital pen to take notes or edit documents with the action pen feature within the draw tab. This allows you to make edits to the text through freehand writing, and it may feel like a more natural way to proofread or edit content.

Related: How To Make Business Cards in Microsoft Word (With Template)

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Tips for using Word effectively

You can use these helpful tips for using Word more effectively:

  • Use keyboard shortcuts. Keyboard shortcuts are specific keys you can press at the same time to perform an action. Word has a few default shortcuts, but you can also program your own to save time by not manually performing each action with your mouse or pen.

  • Install across devices. Word is available for most devices, and by installing it on your computer, tablet and phone, for example, you can access documents from each one and edit them or reference them as you need to.

  • Browse the templates. Word comes with many useful templates for things like cover letters, resumes, calendars and lists. Though you can always use a template, you can also browse templates to find ideas for how to format or design your document without using one.

Related: Guide to Free Templates for Cover Letters in Microsoft Word and Google Docs

Please note that none of the companies mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.

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