Creating a Chart

When you have a well-organized worksheet in place, you're ready to create a chart. In the following examples, we'll use the 1999 Sales Summary workbook (SalesSum.xls) shown in Figure 21-1, to create a pie chart and a column chart. Because charting often involves experimenting with different chart types, feel free to follow your own impulses as you complete the instructions.

The SalesSum.xls example is on the Running Office 2000 Reader's Corner page. For information about connecting to this Web site, read the Introduction.

To create a pie chart in a new sheet in the workbook, follow these steps:

  1. Prepare a worksheet that has rows and columns of information that you can use in the chart. Add row and column labels if you want them included in the chart.
  2. TIP
    If you select labels along with the data for your chart before you create the chart, Excel will add the labels automatically.

  • Select the cell range containing the data to be plotted. In this example, we'll be creating a pie chart, so we want to select one category of values (one row or column).
  • In Excel terminology, a category is called a data series. The following screen shows how you would select numbers in the 1st Quarter column for a pie chart, including text that you want to use as chart labels:

  • Now create the chart. Choose Chart from the Insert menu, or click the Chart Wizard button on the Standard toolbar. The Chart Wizard starts, and you'll see the following dialog box asking you to select a chart type:
  • If Office Assistant appears, click the Help button to close it so that you'll have a better view of the worksheet.
  • Click the Pie chart type in the Chart Type list box, and then click the Exploded 3-D Pie in the Chart Sub-Type box. (The names of the sub-types appear as you click each one.)
  • Click Next to display the dialog box prompting you for the worksheet cells to include in the chart. The cells you selected in step 2 appear in the Data Range text box (cells A3 through B7).
  • NOTE
    If you organized your worksheet well, and if you selected the proper data, your chart should now contain the correct information (although the labels might be too small to see). If your chart doesn't look right, use the option buttons and list boxes in this dialog box to change the cells used for the data series, labels, and chart title.

  • Click Next to display the Chart Wizard dialog box that controls the chart's titles, legend, and data labels. Your pie chart appears in a sample window with the default settings, as shown in the following screen:
  • click to view at full size.

  • Starting from the Titles tab, change the chart title to 1999 Regional Sales Summary, and then click Next.
  • The Chart Wizard displays a dialog box asking you for the location of your new chart. You can either create a new workbook tab for the chart, or place it as an object in one of your existing worksheets.

  • Click the As New Sheet button, type Summary Chart in the highlighted text box, and then click the Finish button.
  • Excel completes the pie chart and displays it in a new sheet named Summary Chart in the workbook. Excel adjusts the Zoom control on the Standard toolbar so that the entire chart is visible. The Charting toolbar also appears; we'll cover it in the section "Formatting a Chart"

    click to view at full size.

  • Choose Save from the File menu to save your new chart to disk as part of your open workbook. You can now display the pie chart at any time by clicking the Summary Chart tab.
  • TIP
    To get a better look at the title, labels, and data in your new chart, click the Zoom control on the Standard toolbar, and select a higher viewing percentage. You'll find that 75% or 100% usually works well for reading the text in your chart and for formatting labels.

    Creating an Embedded Chart

    Excel also allows you to create an in-place, or embedded, chart in an existing worksheet. This technique allows you to closely associate graphical images with the data in your worksheet. For example, you could create an area chart depicting bagel production in a bakery worksheet containing inventory and sales data. In the following example, we'll show you how to add a column sales chart to a sales-summary worksheet.

    To create an embedded chart in a worksheet, follow these steps:

    1. Prepare a worksheet that has rows and columns of data that you can chart. As you create the worksheet, set aside some room for a rectangular column chart.
    2. Select the cell range containing the data that you want to plot. In our example, we'll be creating a chart that has groups of columns representing sales regions, so if you want to follow our example, you'll need to select several columns of data. Our selected columns and labels look like this:
    3. click to view at full size.

    4. Click the Chart Wizard button on the Standard toolbar. (Creating an embedded chart is exactly like creating a stand-alone chart, except for specifying the chart location in step 10.)
    5. In the Chart Type dialog box, specify the chart type you want to use and click Next. (In this example, we'll use the default column chart type.)
    6. The Chart Source Data dialog box reflects the data range selected in step 2. Click Next, unless you first want to adjust any of the settings for your data.
    7. Customize your chart by choosing from among the options presented in the Chart Options dialog box, or accept Excel's settings. Notice that you have a different set of options for a column chart than you did for a pie chart.
    8. When you're finished, click the Next button to display the Chart Location dialog box:
    9. click to view at full size.

    10. Click the As Object In option button, and then specify the worksheet in which you want to place the new chart by using the adjacent drop-down list box. (We placed our chart in the Summary worksheet.)
    11. Click the Finish button to complete the chart.
    12. The Chart Wizard builds the chart to your specifications and places it in the middle of the worksheet, as shown in the following illustration. (Note that the chart is currently selected and has eight selection handles.)
    13. click to view at full size.

    Working with Embedded Charts

    When you embed an Excel chart in a worksheet, you create an object that can be resized, formatted, moved, and deleted like clip art or any other object. You can use the following editing techniques on embedded charts:

    1. Drag the chart to the desired location in the worksheet, and resize it to display the amount of detail you want. (Drag the chart by one of its edges so that you don't inadvertently rearrange the chart components.)
    2. TIP
      Excel creates embedded charts small to make them easy to move and format. However, your chart will usually look better if you enlarge it.

  • When you're finished, click outside the chart to remove the selection handles and lock it in place on your worksheet. (Click the chart to reactivate the selection handles in the future.) The final column chart is shown in Figure 21-2.
    The Charts.xls example is on the Running Office 2000 Reader's Corner page.

    click to view at full size.

    Figure 21-2. A completed column chart embedded in the worksheet.

    Running Microsoft Office 2000 Small Business
    Running Microsoft Office 2000
    ISBN: 1572319585
    EAN: 2147483647
    Year: 2005
    Pages: 228
    Authors: Michael Halvorson, Michael J. Young
    BUY ON AMAZON © 2008-2017.
    If you may any questions please contact us: