PowerPoint clipart (Online Pictures) is back : Part 2

Read the previous article for continuity. In this article, we will use the new term PowerPoint Online Pictures. We will cover OneDrive, Pexel and Pickit. In the next article, we will learn best practices for using clipart, images and illustrations.

Pexel search with keyword and color

OneDrive in Online Pictures

This is a good addition to Online Pictures. Images stored in your OneDrive can also be added to this dialog. It could be OneDrive Personal or OneDrive for Business or both. I added my personal OneDrive. However, I did not find a way to add my OneDrive for Business account. I also could not find how to log out from the personal OneDrive. In case any of you find it, please post it as a comment below this post.

If you see a thumbnail image, that folder contains one or more images. If you see just the folder icon, no need to go there. It does not contain any images. Thumbnail view is the default. It cannot be changed to list view.

PowerPoint Online Pictures - from OneDrive

PickIt in Online Pictures

A large collection of images, graphics and photos. First time click on a picture or category, you will have to login using your Microsoft ID (Live, xBox, Hotmail, etc.).  It is a Swedish company started in 2012. This collection is aimed at breaking the monotony or predictable and boringly cheesy images of globes, people looking at a monitor or shaking hands.

One thing I did not like is that the thumbnails sometimes show photos with wrong aspect ratios. When the image is inserted, there is no distortion. However, it does not look nice in the thumbnail view.

PowerPoint Online Pictures - from Pickit

All the images are in lower resolutions. If you want HD resolution, you have to purchase the Pro version on Windows 10 app store. It costs 2 USD per month. Very good value for money. Try out the one-month free trial if you like.

Online Pictures - low and high res - from PickIt

The app is called PickIt Photo Finder. It does not integrate with PowerPoint (or other Office tools). It is a  separate app and you must select images, download them and then insert into PowerPoint.

In short, Low Res – using Insert, Online Pictures and High Res using separate App.

Disclaimer: I am not associated with any product vendor as a reseller and I do not gain from the sale of any products, including Microsoft Office.


This is an Office Add-in created by a Norwegian company. The special thing about this collection is its zero-legal-hassle license. These images can be used for any purpose, including commercial ventures. You do not need to specify the source and acknowledge the creator. In short, really – REALLY free images!

Choosing this option from Insert – Online Pictures does not show pictures at all. It opens the Pexels app page in Office store.

Pexels installation page on Office store

Install it from the Office store. It opens a browser window showing a two-step process.

Installing Pexels for Word and PowerPoint

Click on the PowerPoint option. It reopens PowerPoint in Protected Mode. Choose the Enable Editing button in the yellow bar. Now it reopens PowerPoint with the New Office Add-in pane. Choose Trust this add-in.

Pexels Add-in trust dialog

It will now add a new button at the end of Insert tab in PowerPoint called Open Pexels.

Pexels ribbon button

Finally, you can use the images. It does not show any thumbnails. Search and then see the results.

Pexel search dialog - no thumbnails are shown.

Images are 96 DPI and non HD.  The colored dots below the Search have a purpose. These are the theme colors for the currently open presentation. A great and unexpected feature. I just clicked on the yellow color and see what happened.

Pexel search on color only

Color can be combined with categories as well. Color values are automatically added in Hex. However, you can just type the English color names as well (the pre-defined color names).

Pexel search with keyword and color

Still want clipart? Use OpenClipArt.org

It has 130,000+  images and is constantly updated. There may be more such resources available. But I find this one good enough for my needs. See this article for more resources.

Open Clipart image collection

If you want more resources for images, read this article on the Presentation Zen site.

Best practices

We just looked at how you can get millions of images for free. That does not solve the problem of using great illustrations within PowerPoint. In fact, that IS the problem.

With too many images, how to find the best one? How to use these rich resources intelligently? We will answer these questions in the next article.

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This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA

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