Placing a Picture in a Comment

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated January 22, 2020)

9

In Word, Leticia notes that you can paste a picture into a comment. She's tried to do this in Excel, but without success. She wonders if there is a way to paste a picture into an Excel comment.

There is no way to paste a picture into a comment (as you do in Word), but there is a way to make a picture appear within a comment. This may sound like a confusing contradiction, but Excel allows you to actually format the comment, independent of the text contained in the comment, so that it is "filled" with a picture.

Note that Microsoft changed the way comments work in Excel in Office 365. Comments are now threaded allowing users to have discussions with each other regarding the data. Notes work like comments in earlier versions of Excel. The following steps apply both to earlier versions of Excel using comments and to Excel for Office 365 using notes:

  1. If the comment or note is not normally visible, right-click the cell and choose Edit Comment or Edit Note from the resulting Context menu.
  2. Right-click on the comment or note border. (Make sure you are actually right-clicking the border, not the contents of the cell itself. You can tell if you will be right-clicking the border because the mouse pointer will look like a four-headed arrow when you are hovering over the border.)
  3. Choose Format Comment from the Context menu. Excel displays the Format Comment dialog box.
  4. Make sure the Colors and Lines tab is displayed. (See Figure 1.)
  5. Figure 1. The Colors and Lines tab of the Format Comment dialog box.

  6. Click the Color drop-down list and choose the Fill Effects option. Excel displays the Fill Effects dialog box.
  7. Make sure the Picture tab is displayed. (See Figure 2.)
  8. Figure 2. The Picture tab of the Fill Effects dialog box.

  9. Click the Select Picture button. Excel displays the Select Picture dialog box, which looks very similar to a standard Open dialog box.
  10. Use the controls in the dialog box to locate the picture you want in the comment or note.
  11. Select the picture and click the Insert button.
  12. Click OK to close the Fill Effects dialog box.
  13. Click OK to close the Format Comment dialog box.
  14. Click a cell elsewhere in the worksheet to exit editing mode for the comment.

Remember that these steps don't actually insert a picture in the comment or note, but instead use the picture as the fill color for the comment or note. This means that you can still add any text in the comment or note you want and it will overlay the picture you just inserted. You can, if desired, also delete any text in the comment or note so that it appears the only thing in the comment or note is the picture.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (13280) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Office 365.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 1 + 7?

2019-06-13 06:46:40

Ron West

I failed to mention that this is in the Excel 2019 Version for Mac
Ron


2019-06-12 18:56:15

Ron West

Hi,
It appears that Microsoft have removed the ability to insert a picture/image in the way above. It may have something to do with copyright/creative commons/licensing, cheers.
Ron


2019-03-31 06:13:38

Chanchea

hi,
when i click to insert a picture into comment, it request me to update inter explorer, i try to update but nothing happen


2014-10-22 13:16:04

Leticia Marquez

Thank you for the tip.


2014-10-20 13:08:12

Kim Carlton

Very cool. Thanks for this one.


2014-10-20 12:28:59

Brooke

I've found a problem with this method. After saving the file and subsequently opening and closing it a few times, I will get an error stating that there is some problem with the file and that the offending data has been "scrubbed." The next time the file is opened, the pictures that were in the comments are now gone. Haven't been able to figure out how to stop this from happening as it is very irritating after taking the time to add multiple photos to comments in a large file. Apparently this is a known issue as I have found some discussion of the problem in online Excel forums.


2014-10-20 09:08:16

Bigger Don

Nice!

Now if MS would only make this in-line with how it's done in Word.

First, if you add text to the Comment it sits on top of the picture.

Second, I don't see a way to simplify this process, i.e. create a macro that would eliminate all of the navigation through the dialogues. Recording a macro showed no hint and the object model seems to hide how this is structured.

I'm afraid that trying to teach some of my users how to do this would make their eyes roll all the way back in their heads.


2014-10-18 11:58:05

HECTOR SERRANO

COOL !!


2014-10-18 09:41:14

Sharon Hammond

Loved this tip. Just goes to show you can never know enough about Excel :)


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