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: Taking a Picture.

Taking a Picture

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated January 2, 2020)
This tip applies to Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


Excel provides a nifty little tool that allows you to create a picture from a range of cells, from a chart, or from another object in your worksheet. Follow these steps:

  1. Select the cells or other object you want a picture of. (If you select cells, they must be contiguous.)
  2. Hold down the Shift key as you click the Edit menu.
  3. Choose Copy Picture. Excel displays the Copy Picture dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The Copy Picture dialog box.

  5. In the top part of the dialog box, specify what you want in the picture.
  6. In the bottom part of the dialog box, specify how you want the graphic saved.
  7. Click OK.

The result is that you now have a graphic in the Clipboard—either a metapicture or a bitmap, depending on your choice in the bottom portion of the dialog box—that you can paste anywhere. Paste it in another workbook, paste it in an e-mail, or paste it in a Word document. You can paste it just about anywhere because it is no longer an Excel object, but an actual graphic.

You should know that if you choose "As Shown On Screen" in the Copy Picture dialog box, that doesn't mean that Excel copies the picture exactly as shown. The copied picture will always be at a 100% zoom magnification, regardless of what zoom setting you are using. Thus, if you are viewing your worksheet at 125% zoom, take a picture of some cells, and then paste the picture back into the workbook, it will look smaller than the rest of your workbook does because of how the picture is captured.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (3523) 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: Taking a Picture.

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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