Inserting Multiple Drawing Objects

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated July 11, 2020)
This tip applies to Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


There may be times when you want to insert multiple drawing objects (such as squares, rectangles, ovals, or circles) in your worksheet. Rather than click on the drawing tools on the Drawing toolbar before creating each object, Excel provides a nifty shortcut. All you need to do is double-click on the drawing tool you want to use. For instance, you can double-click on the Rectangle tool if you want to draw rectangles or squares. Excel "locks" the tool into place, and you can create as many of the objects as you desire. When you are done creating them, click on the tool again or press the Esc key to return the mouse pointer to normal.

You can apply the same concept to creating AutoShapes, but the process is just a bit longer. Follow these steps:

  1. Click on the AutoShapes tool on the Drawing toolbar. Excel presents a listing of AutoShape categories.
  2. Click on the category you want to use. Excel displays a wide array of AutoShapes you can use.
  3. Notice that at the top of the AutoShapes menu there is a small horizontal bar. Click on this bar and drag it to some other location on your screen. When you release the mouse button, the AutoShapes menu appears on its own, floating on your desktop.
  4. Double-click on any item on the menu. It remains selected.
  5. Create any number of that AutoShape in your worksheet.
  6. Press Esc or click on the AutoShape again (in the floating menu) to return the mouse pointer to normal.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2356) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.

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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