Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Creating a Drawing Object.

Creating a Drawing Object

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated December 1, 2018)
This tip applies to Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365


Word allows you to create drawing objects in your document. These objects (such as ovals, rectangles, lines, etc.) are positioned on what is termed the "drawing layer," which is separate and distinct from the text that appears in a document. You create such objects by using the tools on the Insert tab of the ribbon. Click the Shapes tool in the Illustrations group and you can see all of the drawing objects available to use—almost 140 of them.

You can follow these steps to place a drawing object in your document:

  1. Click on the tool that represents the type of object you want to create, or select the object from the Shapes tool. Once a tool is selected, the mouse pointer changes to crosshairs, or a plus sign.
  2. Click within your document at one corner of where you want the shape to appear.
  3. Drag the mouse to the opposite corner for the object.
  4. When you release the mouse button, the object appears in the document and you can manipulate it as desired.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (5926) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Creating a Drawing Object.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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