If you’re creating a stylized presentation, but don’t want to use overly used templates from PowerPoint, Google Slides, or Canva, you can create your own master templates for your presentation designs. Future.
This is a great option for those who want to design a themed presentation or who need to follow a branded style guide. Keep reading to learn how to use Figma to create master templates for your presentations.
1. How to set up a Figma document for presentations
Sign up for a free account at Figma.com, or if you already have an account, log in. You can use Figma directly in your browser, or you can download the desktop app.
Open one New design filethen tap Untitled at the top to rename your file such as “Main Presentation Template”. On the left, click Page 1Later plus to add a new page. Rename the new page to “Templates”. This allows you to keep your master slides separate from your design slides later.
To create a frame — Figma’s name for the artboard or canvas — use Frame tool (F), then click anywhere to open the pane. In the settings on the right, change W and H proper presentation size attribute; we are using 1920 x 1080, which is the standard screen size. This will be your first main template.
Double-click the blue header at the top of the frame to rename it. Think about the page layout you’re planning and name it accordingly — for example, “Two columns at the top of the header” or “Image to the right of the top header” would be helpful.
2. Design the presentation layout
To help with layout design, you can use the layout grid. To enable this, select your frame, then on the right toolbar, click plus next to Layout Grid. This will open up a red translucent grid on top of your design.
To create columns — easier to design — click square dot grid icon in Grid Layout, then tap Grid in the drop-down menu and select Pillar. Set the count to 12, which is typical for screen designs. The grid does not save to your final design. You can temporarily enable or disable it using eye icon or permanently delete it by clicking minus symbol side of the eye.
Whether you use grid layouts or not, you can start adding basic placeholder elements to your first slide layout. Overall, the layout of your slides is up to you.
3. Create a two-column text layout
Let’s start with designing a header with a two-column body text slide. To add your title placeholder, use Text tool (BILLION) and enter “Title placeholder”. The default text size in Figma is pretty small, so with your placeholder imported, highlight it and use the settings on the right to increase the size and choose the font — download the font if needed. You can also set kerning and other properties.
To fit the width of the slide, increase the width of the title text box by clicking and dragging the corner to the right. Leave a margin on each side. This means that the text box will contain different title lengths in future presentations.
To add a two-column body text area, use Text tool (BILLION) and drag the text box to your layout grid, leaving enough room for a second column of the same size next to it.
With your text box in place, choose an appropriate font and size. Select the text box and copy it by holding Option (Mac) or Alt (Windows) while dragging the box. This creates a two-column layout; however, you can use this system to design other types of layouts.
4. Add background color or image
You can set the background color by selecting the frame and going to Fill on the right menu to choose a color. But if you want to use an image or a set of images as a background, you can. Just drag your wallpaper from a folder into your frame. You can instantly resize it by dragging the corners to fit your frame.
If using an image as a background, make sure you align the image to the back or bottom of the layers for each slide by right-clicking and selecting Send toor by dragging it to the bottom on the left layer palette.
To edit more images, under Fillclick Picture in the drop-down menu. You will be able to change the blend mode, crop factor and other aspects. To change the opacity, change the percentage next to the drop-down menu.
For an individual image that is not a wallpaper, use Frame tool (F) to draw the frame where you want the image to lie, and drag the file from your computer onto the frame. You can then use the same settings as before.
5. How to Style Text in Figma
When creating a master template, text styles should be consistent across all slides. This can be done manually by placing each text element the same, but if you have a lot of slides this can be quite tedious. Good news? You can automate your text styles in Figma.
With selected text selected — for example, captions in your preferred style, font, and size — click four-dot square next to Text in the menu on the right. Click plus to establish a new style.
In the pop-up window, give the style a name — for example, “Slide Title or Body Text.” When designing other slides in this template, you can select the style listed in the text menu by selecting the text and selecting the style. To unlink styles and override features, click broken link icon appears when hovering over a text style title.
It works the same for colors. Select something with the color you want, then click the Figma menu button and Quick action. Type “Select all with same fill” and it will select everything with the same color. You can then set it as a color style in Fill menus in the same way as text styles. This works well for background colors by simply selecting the frame and choosing your color.
If you haven’t followed the style guide, there are ways to create a palette.
6. Creating Components
To be able to use your templates later, they need to be components, so they link together. To make a frame an element, select the current frame and click cmd + Selection + KY (Mac) or Control + Alt + KY (Windows).
The title of the frame will change from blue to purple with a diamond icon to show that it is now an element. Then, to duplicate the frame, click cmd + EASY (Mac) or Control + EASY (Windows) once and drag the new frame to the right of the first one.
Separate the copy’s composition from the original by right-clicking on the title of the new frame and selecting Split version. Rename the new slide with an appropriate title for its layout. Add a new design to the slide and then create its own element by clicking cmd + Selection + KY (Mac) or Control + Alt + KY (Windows). This process needs to be done every time you create a new slide.
When designing a layout for each new slide, use your pre-made text and color styles to save time. Complete this process with as many base slides as you require, making sure they all have titles with descriptive names.
7. How to Use Your Master Slides
To use the slides for your future designs, select Page 1 inside Pages menu — with your template’s title — and create a new presentation-sized frame. Then, on the left, click Content > Local Components where your template slides should be. Drag the sample slides into your new frame and center it. Edit the placeholder for your content.
Follow the same process until your presentation is complete.
Save time by creating your own master templates in Figma
You can give your master template away to teammates or colleagues, keep it for your personal use, or even sell them as design packs. While it may seem daunting at first to create a slide template, it will aid productivity as you make future presentations in Figma, ultimately saving time.
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