Adding shapes is one of the best ways to annotate and markup any PDF document. Adding shapes to PDFs makes them easier to skim, find important information, and more accessible to view, for yourself and for others.
But how do you add a shape to a PDF?
Unfortunately, PDF readers like Chrome, Edge, and Adobe Acrobat Reader can’t add shapes to PDFs. They can only view them.
We’ll show you multiple ways to add shapes to PDF documents directly.
There are many ways to customize the shapes you add to your PDFs. You can change the color, the size, and more depending on your needs. Some of the properties of your shape you can customize include:
No matter what shape you choose to add to your PDF, you’ll have options to change the look and style of the shape.
There are many different shapes that you can add to PDFs, depending on your needs. Some of the most commonly used shapes are:
This is the easiest way to add shapes to PDF documents. PDF Writer is more affordable than Adobe Acrobat Reader’s expensive total cost (which is currently US$179.95 annually), yet offers a powerful set of tools for adding shapes to PDFs.
PDF Writer is a lifetime license – that means no paying a subscription to use it; pay once and it’s yours forever.
To add shapes to PDF:
You’re now free to customize your shape as you wish (color, line weight, etc.)
Adobe Acrobat Pro DC is expensive and can be complicated to use, even though it’s a popular program for PDFs.
Here are a couple methods to add shapes to PDFs online, for free. They’re free methods, but are more time-consuming, slower, and have more steps then the other methods. And can be prone to formatting and space issues.
Note: you'll need access to Microsoft Word to use this method. If you don't have Word, you can use the Google Docs method above.
Adobe Acrobat Pro DC is a household name, but it’s too complicated, too expensive, and more complicated than we need to quickly and easily add shapes to PDFs. And we may not even need all the other tools which means you're paying for things that you won't really use.
Fortunately, PDF Writer is affordable, easy to use, and has all the features you need to add shapes to PDFs quickly and easily. It makes it a breeze to annotate, markup, or comment on PDFs using shapes. Below are some of the reasons of what make PDF Writer so awesome:
Features of the program:
Unless specified, we’ll answer these FAQs using PDF Writer for example. But the answers should still be applicable regardless of the tool you’re using, though exact steps/names of tools may differ slightly depending on what program you use.
Open PDF your in Adobe Acrobat Reader DC, then press: Tools > Comment > Drawing Tools > select your shape.
You can’t add shapes to PDFs in Chrome. Microsoft Chrome only allows you to view and read PDFs.
You can only draw shapes in Microsoft Edge. To do so, open the PDF with Microsoft Edge, then press: Draw tool.
Yes. You can draw shapes on a PDF for free by using Microsoft Edge, or a paid tool like PDF Writer.
Left-click the shape with your mouse > press Color > select a new color.
Left-click the shape with your mouse > press Fill color > select a new color.
Left-click the shape with your mouse > locate Thickness button > use up/down arrow buttons to change the thickness of the shape.
Left-click the shape with your mouse > locate Transparency > use up/down arrows OR highlight with your mouse cursor and use keyboard to choose transparency percentage.
Left-click the shape to highlight it > click and drag on a highlighted dot to change the size of the shape.
Double click on the shape > click on comment box (left side of screen) > type your comment > press [esc] key to exit commenting mode.
Use the TypeWriter tool to add text inside of a shape. In the Home tab: Press TypeWriter > click the inside the shape > start typing.