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Visio: Connecting or gluing an image to a shape so that it moves with the shape

It is possible to paste any image into Visio and have it attached to any shape in the image so that when that shape is moved the image moves with it.  This is the same functionality that “attached comments” in SummaryPro provide for text.

A use for this could be to have an image stuck to an invisible attachment point in the SummaryPro plan on a page to show when a deliverable is planned to be delivered.

To do this you have to either insert the image or copy it in from elsewhere and then tell Visio where you want to place a “connection point” and that it should be an “inward and outward” point

Either paste in your image or insert / pictures and re-size as needed

Starting point with an image pasted in

On the Home / tools menu click on the Connection Point tool (or use <shift><control><1)

Highlighting the connection tool in Visio

Holding the control key down click where on the image you want to place the sticky connector.  This can be anywhere on the edge or middle; note it will snap to the existing connections points (corners and middles of lines and the shape).  This will place a Red dot where the connection will be

Select the new connection point and right mouse and chose “inward and outward”.

Make the new connection point inward and outward

Now you can connect your new image to any shape on the page which has a connection point, and the image will move when the shape moves.  To do this simply drag the image over to the shape and position the new connection point over an existing connection point on the shape and the connection point will turn green showing that they are connected.

Move the image to connect with the shape

If you want more precision about where the connection point is placed right mouse on the image and select “show shapesheet”.

Show the shapesheet in Visio

Right mouse in a blank space and click on View Sections and then ensure that the “connection points” tick box is checked.  If it is greyed out right mouse again and chose “insert section”.

In here you can set the location “X and Y” for the connection point which is expressed as coordinates of width and height of the image with the origin at the bottom left.  A connection point half way up the image on the left hand side would be:

X: Width*0

Y: Height*0.5

It is also possible to combine these coordinates with absolute dimensions; so if you wanted the image to always stand 2mm away from the shape you would modify the X: coordinate with Width*0-2mm

When using the shapesheet method you always need to ensure that you have 25.4mm in the DirX/A section and 2 in the Type / C section

Entries in the Connection Points table in the shapesheet

Miles Goodchild

Miles Goodchild has been a Program and Programme Planner, PMO lead and Project Manger since 1998.  He enjoys using MS Office, especially Project, Excel and Visio to make life easier and simpler.  In the course of this he created SummaryPro.  In this blog he shares some of the tips and techniques he has learnt over the years in the hope that they will be useful to you.