Create a superb poster in Word in only 3 steps!

Creating a poster with Word seems much easier than Photoshop or other photo software. I hear people say, “It’s not made for that!” Or “The most boring posters are made on Word!” But you know what, those people actually didn’t bother to go further in the matter. By digging well in the features of this good old Word, we can get an enticing visual rendering that has nothing to envy of the quality of a photo editing software. So, forget about all these terrible posters that are difficult to lay out on a page. Instead, follow the 3 steps that I’ll give you here to create a beautiful poster with Word 2013.

Making a poster in Word: add both a design and catchy title

First of all, you have to create a new document. Start by clicking on “File”, then “New”, and choose “Blank Document”. Here, we must already consider the formatting of all the content and therefore, display the margins (in green line). To do this, go to “View” and untick “Rulers”.

Note that before creating a poster, you must first define the format. In this example, we chose an A4 format of 21 by 29.7 cm in real size.

We should be careful with the alignment if we want to create a beautiful poster with Word
Be careful with the alignment if you want to create a beautiful poster with Word

To add a title in the document, just go to the “Insert” tab in the Menu bar at the top, and then go to “WordArt”. We then obtain a kind of text box on the document – where we can put our title. Obviously, we can add as much content as we wish, but we must be mindful of the presentation – whether it’s an ad poster, a recruitment poster, a promotional poster, etc. (For more types of posters and when to use which, click here).

In this practical case, we will add effects to embellish the title. Thus, in the “Format” tab, then in the “Text Effect” category, we chose the “Transform” option. There, we got a long list of transformation options.

Embellish your title by choosing the right transformation
Embellish your title by choosing the right transformation

Insert the content or message of the poster

You have to consider the background and the form of the message to create a appealing poster with Word. Do you want to know the secret? To add the message, we’ll not type the text directly in the document, but we’ll insert a text box. To do this, we always go to “Insert”, then to “Text box”, then we choose “Simple text box”. The text box is more practical and appropriate because you can move it anywhere in the document.

The text box is more convenient for creating a poster with Word
The text box is more convenient for creating a poster with Word

It should be noted that a text box background is white by default. It distinguishes itself when interacting with other elements. It is therefore recommended to make it transparent to anticipate some adjustments to be made later.

To make the background of a text box transparent, just right click on the text box and choose “Format Shape” from the drop-down list. A dialog box opens to the right. In “Shape Options”, you must pick “No Fill” in “Fill” and “No Line” in “Line”. It’s as simple as that!

A transparent background is better than a white background for a visual rendering quality
A transparent background is better than a white background for a visual rendering quality

To center the text (and it is also valid for the title), just select it and go to “Home”, then “Paragraph”, and center it (as you center a text in a Word document).

It’s important to remember that creating a nice poster on Word implies perfect alignment with margins. By stretching the text box on the left and on the right, the text will then align well on the page when the green line appears.

Always be sure to align with the page
Always be sure to check the alignment in relation to the page

To change the font, size, and colour of the characters, it’s the same as with the usual texts in Word (in the font, size and colour bar at the top). You just need to select the text and customise it with all the choices of modifications.

To insert additional information on the poster (in this example: date, place, participation fees), you can choose either text box or WordArt. As we chose WordArt, we can always style the text. To do this, click on “Form format” in the drop-down list and then “Text options” this time. And as always, we can adorn our text at will.

Creating a beautiful poster with Word is above all having imagination and using the right software tools
Creating a lovely poster with Word is above all having imagination and using the right software tools

At this stage, we should not overload our poster and still ensure that each text is legible. We must therefore strive to choose appropriate colours.

Add a background image

Last step to create an outstanding poster with Word: add a background image.

Simply go to “Insert”, then click on “Image”. There, you just have to browse the files and insert the image you want. To make it really a background image, click on the small square at the top right of our image to display “Layout Options”. Then you choose “Behind the text”. Then, select the image and right-click to display the drop-down list. This time, you click on “Image format”. To format the image, click on “Crop”.

Insert an image that is easily workable with Word
Insert an image that is easily workable with Word

We can then enlarge the image, but there will always be empty bands at the top and bottom of the document. To fill them, we will insert a text box (same procedure as mentioned above). But even in this text area, it will not completely cover the empty strips. Oh yes! When we want to create a poster with Word, we are faced with this kind of concern. But rest assured, it can be adjusted: to fix it, we first need to go in the “Format” tab, then in “Position”, and finally choose “With text wrapping”. And Ta-daaa!

By using its features efficiently, you can cleverly create a poster with Word
By using its features efficiently, you can cleverly create a poster with Word

Now, to position this text box behind the text, we still go to “Format”, but this time in “Arrange”, then we choose “Behind the text”.

We can easily put a background with Word, nothing to do with Photoshop's complicated layer options
We can easily set a background with Word, nothing to do with Photoshop’s complicated layer options

We will then assign a colour to the text box, one that is close to the colour of the image. To do this, you have to right click on it, then on “Form format” in the drop-down list. In the “Form Format” dialog box on the right, you just choose the right colour and adjust the transparency. Now we can enlarge this text box until we cover all the empty bands. :)

That’s it. Creating a poster with Word is pretty elementary, isn’t it?

That's it, we just created a poster with Word!
That’s it, we just created a poster with Word!

At this point, you still have to take precautions: be sure to save this new poster created in Word – in PDF format. Thus, its formatting won’t change! Simple precaution.

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