How to Draw in Microsoft Word

71586 How to Draw in Microsoft Word

Microsoft Word offers some useful drawing and sketching features that allow users to add graphics and visual elements to documents. While Word is primarily used for writing text documents, the drawing tools allow you to supplement your writing with custom drawings, shapes, and freehand sketches.

In this comprehensive guide, you’ll learn multiple methods for drawing in Word on both desktop and mobile devices. Whether you want to create flowcharts, UML diagrams, rough sketches, or handwritten notes, Word provides the necessary tools.


To follow along with this guide and use the drawing features in Word, you’ll need:

  • Microsoft Word installed on your desktop or mobile device
  • Drawing features are available in Microsoft 365 and Office 2019 and later
  • A Windows or Mac computer, or an iPad or iPhone
  • A touchscreen device allows finger drawing
  • Non-touch devices will need a mouse or trackpad for drawing

Drawing Shapes and Lines

The simplest way to draw in Word is to use the built-in shapes and lines. Here’s how:

Insert Shapes

  1. Click Insert > Shapes
  2. Select the desired shape from the menu
  3. Click and drag in the document to draw the shape
  4. Resize or reposition shapes by dragging the handles

Use Shape Tools

  • On the Format tab, you can:
  • Change the shape
  • Edit shape text
  • Group shapes
  • Apply styles and effects

Draw Lines

  1. Click Insert > Shapes > Lines
  2. Select the desired line or arrow and draw in the document

You can combine shapes and lines to create diagrams, flowcharts, timelines, and more.

Freeform Drawing

For freehand drawing instead of predefined shapes, use the pen tool:

  1. Click the Draw tab > Pen
  2. Select pen type, color, and size
  3. Click and drag to draw freeform lines and shapes
  4. Lift the pen or finger to stop drawing


  • Use an eraser to remove parts of the drawing
  • Click Select Objects > Lasso Select to select parts of the sketch

Drawing Canvas

For more control over your drawing:

  1. Insert a Drawing Canvas
  2. Draw inside the canvas using shapes or freehand sketching
  3. Drag the canvas borders to resize
  4. Position images behind the canvas by right-clicking and selecting Send Behind Drawing Canvas

Math Equations

You can handwrite math equations which will be converted automatically into LaTeX thanks to Ink Equation Editor:

  1. On the Draw tab, click Ink Equation Editor
  2. Write out the equation using the pen
  3. The handwritten math will be converted to a LaTeX formatted equation


To add a handwritten digital signature:

  1. Click Insert > Signature Line
  2. Specify signature settings like name, title, email
  3. Click the signature line box and write your signature with the pen

Additional Tips

  • Use a tablet or touchscreen PC for easiest drawing
  • On mobile Word apps, tap the Draw tab to find pens
  • Access premium illustrations and icons with Icons8 plugin
  • Use Format Painter to copy drawing styles
  • Hold Shift while resizing a drawing to retain proportions
  • Right-click drawings to access formatting options


While Microsoft Word is primarily used for documents and text, its drawing features allow you to supplement your writing with everything from rough sketches to intricate diagrams.

Use the techniques covered in this guide to start drawing shapes, freeform illustrations, math equations, and signatures directly within Word on desktop or mobile. Combine the text capabilities of Word with its versatile drawing tools to create visually engaging documents.

The key tools to remember are the Shapes menu, Pens on the Draw tab, Ink Equation Editor, and Signature Lines. With some practice, you’ll be able to create amazing drawings without needing any advanced design software or graphic skills.

So next time you use Word, don’t forget to take advantage of its often overlooked yet quite powerful built-in drawing and sketching features.

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