Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Exporting a Graphics Group.

Exporting a Graphics Group

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated November 14, 2015)


It is not unusual to spend a good amount of time to get your Excel charts looking just the way you want them too. After putting in the time for the desired result, you may want to export a graphics group as a single GIF file so you can use it in other programs or on the Web.

Unfortunately, there is no way to do this in Excel. Even in VBA the group cannot be exported as a graphic. (Individual objects can, but not the group as a whole.) The only workaround that we could come up with seems rather old-fashioned. Follow these steps:

  1. Display the worksheet containing the graphics group you want in the GIF file.
  2. Make sure the Excel program window is maximized.
  3. Choose Full Screen from the View menu. Excel hides many of its menus and toolbars.
  4. Drag any stray toolbars to the side so that they don't obscure any portion of your graphics group.
  5. Press the Print Screen key on your keyboard. The entire image of the screen is copied to the Clipboard.
  6. Minimize or exit Excel.
  7. Start your favorite graphics editing program. (My favorite is Paint Shop Pro.)
  8. Paste the contents of the Clipboard into the graphics program.
  9. Edit the graphic as desired, so that it contains only the grouped items.
  10. Save the image as a GIF image.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (1974) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Exporting a Graphics Group.

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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What is 4 + 4?

2015-11-14 05:52:36


Just wondering if the Shift + Edit > Copy Picture would be more elegant.

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