Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
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Tip 95: Creating Minimalistic Charts
Creating Minimalistic Charts
Effective charts don’t always have to be complicated. In fact, simpler charts that convey a clear
message are almost always preferable to more complex charts.
This tip presents some simple charts that demonstrate various ways to provide a different visual
experience, compared to the standard chart types. The point is to help you realize that, with a bit of
creativity, you can create charts that don’t look like everyone else’s charts.
Simple column charts
Figure 95-1 shows four charts, each of which uses only one data point. This data could be displayed
in a single chart, but using four charts provides a different, cleaner look.
These are very minimalistic charts. The only chart elements displayed are the single data point series,
the data label for that data point, and the chart tile (displayed on the left, and rotated). The single
column fills the entire width of the plot area.
Figure 95-1: Four minimalistic column charts.
Simple pie charts
Figure 95-2 shows the same data, plotted as four pie charts. These charts were adjusted such that the
angle of the first slice is 0 degrees. That step makes it easy to make comparisons across the four
The chart titles are linked to the cells in column E (see Tip 92). Each title is generated with a formula
that uses the original data. For example, the formula in cell E2 is
=A2&” (“&TEXT(B2,”0%”)&”)”
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