Trick: Fix Slanted Photo Horizons

About this lesson

Fix a slanted or skewed horizon in a PowerPoint image.  This is the trick to do what PowerPoint left out of its photo editing toolbox.

A Pro Tip to rotate and perfectly crop out a straight frame for crooked or tilted pictures, photos, or images.

This is a sub-lesson from the full “Photo Editing in PowerPoint” tutorial found here:


This is a five-minute tutorial devoted to the one trick of fixing images.


Subject Microsoft PowerPoint

Software Compatibility All recent versions for Mac and Windows


Course Completed

PDF Files There are not any files associated with this lesson.



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Welcome to fixing tilted horizons in PowerPoint. Hi, this is Les from, where I share my decades of experience with you for free. PowerPoint does not have an easy technique to fix. Fix skewed photos, you can rotate an image, but it will also rotate the frame. But we’ve got two answers. This specific training tutorial is a subset of our longer 20 minute training session on all about editing photos in PowerPoint. But here’s the relevant section just on fixing this skewed orientation of a photograph in PowerPoint. Let’s start up in progress. So the image now has a great look. But the horizon is tilting it’s surprising the glass is not sliding down the railing.

Okay, let rotate the image by grabbing the circle arrow and spinning the photo to make the ocean and sky horizon level. eyeballing it makes it hard to tell for sure. So let’s do a new technique of turning on the ruler and the grid lines and the guide under view and then click click click. And if you want, we can add an Asheville guide by right clicking at the top and choosing add horizontal guides, which we can then grab and drag up as a reference line near our horizon to match it up. zooming in, I can now rotate the image to get it fairly very close to be in level. PowerPoint worked in whole percentages. So sometimes you can only get it so close to perfect, but not exact. Good. Now, let’s try to make this slanted frame look normal by going to the Crop command. Way, way way crop is not gonna work. He cuts off the edges, but it still stays like a crooked frame. Unfortunately, there is no tool built into PowerPoint. We get clever, and we use a combination of techniques to fix it. Step one, go to insert and add in the rectangle shape. We’ll be using this like a cookie cutter stamp to remove the offending parts of the slanted picture. While not required, I like to select the shape and under shape format. Go to shape fill and to no fill. This way I can see my cookie cutter cut out more clearly. I will next resize and reposition the rectangle to get my final look. See how I’m framing the sun, the glass and the Haystack Rock making sure that my corners are inside the image, everything outside will be cut off. The next important step is to send the rectangle shape behind the photo by clicking shape format and sand backward. It’s a bit visually deceptive as even when it is behind the selected items, the selection frame is still shining through. But once that’s in the back, you’re good to go. for that next of the last steps, you now have to select both the image and the rectangle shape. This can get tricky, you have to make sure to start your mouse lasso approach completely outside the corner. See how I need to do this several times to make sure I got it right. But when selected, you’ll see them both selected on the screen with the images and the rectangles. Now for the magic of our cookie cutter rectangle that is now selected with the photo. I’m going to go to a shape Format menu. Because one of my items is a shape and the there’s a picture there I’m going to find Merge Shapes action icon menu, and then the superpower command is Intersect. This will cut the photo from the intersecting shape of the rectangle to get a perfect rectangle level image of our photo with the corrected horizon.

It was quite a few steps. But we did it and it was worth it. Look at our before and after images to see the warms of the afternoon sunset.

There you go unskew those horizons. If this was helpful, do subscribe and like.

Consider watching the full photo retouching in PowerPoint in our YouTube channel and find all of our training at our website of

Until next time, go Power Up!