Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Chapter 4: Formatting and Customizing Charts
Chapter 4
Formatting and
Customizing Charts
An overview of chart formatting
Formatting patterns and borders
Formatting chart background elements
Working with chart titles
Working with legends, data labels, gridlines, and data tables
Understanding chart axes
Formatting 3-D charts
T HE C HART W IZARD DOES A DECENT job of transforming a range of numbers into a
chart. Often, the basic chart that Excel creates is good enough. If you create a chart
for your own use, spending a lot of time on formatting and customizing the chart
may not be worth the effort. But if you want to create the most effective chart
possible, or if you need to create a chart for presentation purposes, you’ll probably
want to take advantage of the additional customization techniques available in
This chapter discusses the ins and outs of formatting and customizing your
charts. It’s easy to become overwhelmed with all the chart customization options.
However, the more you work with charts, the easier it becomes. Even advanced
users tend to experiment a great deal with chart customization, and they rely
heavily on trial and error — a technique that I strongly recommend.
Chart Formatting Overview
Customizing a chart involves changing the appearance of its elements, as well as
possibly adding new elements to it. These changes can be purely cosmetic (such as
changing colors or modifying line widths) or quite substantial (such as changing
the axis scales or rotating a 3-D chart).
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