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The Ultimate Guide to Embedding Pictures in Excel Cells

Updated: Feb 12

Incorporating images directly into your Excel spreadsheets can significantly enhance their visual appeal and effectiveness in communication.


Embed images into excel cells

Excel 365 now brings the power of embedding pictures directly into Excel cells.


Unlike other methods of adding images that float over the spreadsheet, inserting a picture directly into a cell overcomes numerous issues from 'layering' images over cells.

Let's dive into the step-by-step process, followed by our view on the advantages and disadvantages of this feature.


Contents


Requirements:

  • Excel Version: Microsoft 365  (Excel versions explained)

  • Operating Systems: Compatible with the latest versions of Windows and macOS that support Excel for Microsoft 365.

  • Excel supports the following picture file types for inserting pictures in cells: JPG/JPEG, PNG, BMP, ICO, WEBP, TIF/TIFF, GIF (not animated).



Insert a Filed Picture Into a Cell from the Excel Ribbon

Steps to Insert a Stored Picture Into a Cell from the Excel Ribbon



  1. Open Your Spreadsheet Launch Excel and open the workbook where you want to insert the picture.

  2. Select the Cell Click on the cell into which you wish to insert the picture. Ensure the cell is large enough to display the image clearly.

  3. Go to the Insert Tab On the Excel Ribbon, find and click on the 'Insert' tab to reveal various options for adding elements to your spreadsheet.

  4. Click on "Pictures": In the 'Insert' tab, look for the 'Pictures' option. You might see a dropdown arrow depending on your version of Excel; click it to reveal further choices.

Steps to Insert a Filed Picture Into a Cell from the Excel Ribbon

  • Choose Your Image Source You will be prompted to choose the source of the image you wish to insert.


Choose files to be embedded in cells
  • Select and Insert the Picture Navigate through your files and select the image you want to insert.

Choose files to be embedded in cells













Copy & Paste a Picture into an Excel Cell

Steps to Copy & Paste a Picture into an Excel Cell


  1. Copy the Picture First, you need to have the image you want to paste into Excel on your clipboard. Right-click on the image (whether it’s found online, in a document, or any other source) and select "Copy," or use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + C (Command + C on macOS) to copy the image.

  2. Open Your Excel Workbook Launch Excel and navigate to the workbook and the specific sheet where you want to paste the picture.

  3. Select the Destination Cell Click on the cell where you want the image to be pasted. This cell will act as the anchor for your image.

  4. Paste the Picture as a Linked Picture   - Go to the "Home" tab on the Excel Ribbon.

Insert image button option

  - Click on the dropdown arrow under "Paste" to open the paste options.

  - Select "Linked Picture" (note: this option might not be available in all versions of Excel).   - The image from your clipboard will be pasted as a picture that dynamically links to the cell.   - This means the picture will resize with the cell and move with it.


Adjusting the Image - After pasting, the image might not fit perfectly within the cell. - You can resize the cell to better accommodate the image or resize the image itself - select it and dragging the corners to adjust its dimensions.


Expand the cell size for embedded picture

Need a bigger cell?

If you want to enlarge the appearance of the image but not change the size of the surrounding cells, merge cells as needed to accommodate the images appropriately.

Merging Cells
Cells F2:G5 merged into one cell


Insert Multiple Pictures into Excel

Steps to Insert Multiple Pictures into Excel


  1. Prepare Your Images Before starting, ensure all the images you intend to insert are located in the same folder and are appropriately sized for your Excel cells. If you're inserting images into adjacent cells, consider adding a white border around each image to prevent them from appearing too close together.

  2. Open Your Excel Workbook Launch Excel and open the workbook where you want to add the images. Navigate to the sheet where the images will be inserted.

  3. Go to the Insert Tab On the Excel Ribbon, click the 'Insert' tab to access the insertion options.

  4. Select 'Pictures' Option In the 'Insert' tab, click on 'Pictures'. This action will prompt you to select the source of the images you wish to insert. Choose 'This Device' if you're inserting images stored on your computer.

  5. Select Multiple Images

Choose multiple files to embed into cells

Navigate to the folder containing your images.


To select multiple images, click the first image, then hold down the Ctrl key (Command key on macOS) and click each additional image you want to insert. If you're selecting a consecutive group of images, click the first image, then hold down the Shift key and click the last image in the group.


All images between the first and last click will be selected.

Multiple images embedded in multiple cells

6. Insert the Images

Once you've selected all desired images, click 'Insert'. Excel will place each image into separate cells, starting from the currently selected cell and then down. If you're working with Excel for Microsoft 365, the images may automatically resize to fit the cells. Otherwise, you may need to manually adjust the sizes.



Embedded images formatting options

Adjusting the Inserted Image

You can further refine how the image fits within the cell by exploring the cell formatting options, such as alignment and text wrapping, to ensure the cell's contents are displayed as desired.




Move a 'Picture over Cells' to 'Picture in Cell'

Move a 'Picture over Cells' to 'Picture in Cell'

You can easily switch between the picture types and convert a picture that is floating over cells to a picture in cell.

When selecting a picture over cells and choosing Place in Cell using any of the 3 methods explained below, the picture will be put at the top-left corner cell where the picture over cell was floating.


Three Methods:

1. Left Click Method

  • Select a picture which is layered over cells (left click), the ribbon tab will switch to Picture Format

  • Select Place in Cell.


Move a 'Picture over Cells' to 'Picture in Cell'


Move a 'Picture over Cells' to 'Picture in Cell' using the button

2. A Quicker Left Click Method

  • Select a picture which is layered over cells (left click) the option button will appear at the top right of the selected image





Move a 'Picture over Cells' to 'Picture in Cell' using the button's context menu

3. Right Click Method

  • Select a picture and right click to open drop down the context menu.

  • Select Place in Cell






Switch from 'Picture in Cell' to 'Picture over Cells'

Switch from 'Picture in Cell' to 'Picture over Cells'


If you want to get back and have the picture floating over cells, switch is easy either through the context menu or option button.


Right click on the picture embedded in the cell and left click the option button, or

right click the image to pop up the context menu, choose Picture in Cell > Place over Cells.


Switch from 'Picture in Cell' to 'Picture over Cells' using context menu


 
Advantages of images embedded in Excel cells



  • Enhanced Visualization Adding images can make your data more visually appealing and can help in better illustrating the points your data is making.

  • User Engagement Visual elements like images can increase user engagement with your content, making your spreadsheet more effective as a communication tool.

  • Versatility This method allows for a wide range of image sources, including local files and online resources.

  • Prevents Cell Obstruction Unlike other methods of adding images to spreadsheets, inserting a picture directly into a cell eliminates the problem of the image potentially obscuring other populated cells. This ensures that all data remains visible and unobstructed, improving the readability and functionality of your spreadsheet.


Disadvantages of images embedded in Excel cells





  • File Size Inserting many images can significantly increase your workbook's file size, which might be problematic for sharing or performance.

  • Cell Alignment The image aligns with the cell size, which may require additional adjustments to ensure the image is displayed as intended.

  • Compatibility This feature is specific to Excel for Microsoft 365. Users with older versions of Excel or those using alternative spreadsheet software may not have access to this functionality.



Conclusion

Final Thoughts

Inserting a picture from the Excel Ribbon into a cell is a straightforward process in Excel 365, offering a blend of simplicity and effectiveness for enhancing your spreadsheets.


While it introduces a visual dynamic to data presentation, it's essential to consider the potential impact on file size and the need for version compatibility.


By judiciously using this feature, you can create more engaging and informative Excel documents!



 © Comdex Training News & Blogs 2024

 
Excel's 'Image' function using hyperlinks

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1 Comment


Guest
Feb 12

Sure beats that image() function that only works with a hyperlink.

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