MacMost Now 460: Creating Charts in iWork 09 Numbers

Learn how to create simple charts from spreadsheet data in iWork 09 Numbers. You can create pie charts and line graphs and then customize how they look with inspectors and by just dragging elements. You can also put the charts on a separate page for printing.
Video Transcript / Captions
Closed captioning for this video is available on YouTube: MacMost Now 460: Creating Charts in iWork 09 Numbers.

Hi, this is Gary with MacMost Now. On today's episode let's look at creating charts in iWork Numbers.
Charts have come a long way since the early days of spreadsheets, and with iWork Numbers '09 you can create all sorts of fantastic spreadsheets very easily.
So here's your simple set of data in iWork Numbers '09. Now first thing I'd like to do before creating a chart is to shrink the table to only the size that's needed. So I'll grab the bottom right corner and shrink it all the way down, just to the minimum there. Then I can select it all, and creating a chart is as easy as just clicking on the Charts button here at the top, and choosing whichever chart I want. So for instance let's choose a 3D pie chart. And what this will do is it will create a chart and put it on the same sheet here. You can see now I've got a table there and a chart there. You can see with this chart now I've also got now a 3D chart panel here which I can use to shift around the pie chart very easily. And also I have the Inspector now set to Chart and I can select a lot of different things in it, like whether or not to show the title, or the legend. I can also position the labels to go in or out, like that; what format the labels should be in, for instance percentage, or I can go with the actual number in the table there. I can also explode the wedges out like that, change the rotation angle to move it around..lots of different things you could do. Change the lighting style for instance, the depth of the chart as well, add some beveled edges to it, things like that. You can also select individual wedges in the chart, and once I do there are certain things I can change about it, like for instance I could change the data and labels for it, but I could also just drag it out to indicate something about this piece that I want to show. And you can do that for any of the pieces here, for instance. There are a lot of different things you could do, and it's really as easy as dragging and dropping.
So here's a different set of data, and this type of data demands some sort of line chart instead of a pie chart. So I'm going to choose this one right here, and you can see I get a chart now just like before, now on the sheet. I can adjust it, move it around, change the lighting style, change the depth, and all sorts of things. I can also change the chart colors by clicking the Inspector here it brings up this list here, and I can change to all sorts of different styles by simply dragging and dropping it on. So if I had multiple data lines in here I could choose which one to drag it on to.
Now for any of these charts I can select the entire thing and resize it very easily, stretching it in two different dimensions. I can position where it is on the sheet, so for instance what I'm going to do up here next to the data here, I can do that easily as well. It will even help me align it. I can do the same thing here with the data itself, repositioning it. If I want to change any of these labels I just double click in it and change it. I can also change the chart type by simply selecting it, bringing up the Inspector, and then changing the type of chart looking here. So for instance I can change it to this type of chart here, and you can see how it automatically changed to it. I can switch to a 2D chart as well very easily. There are all sorts of different options.
Now say you wanted to include the chart by itself on a sheet so you could just print it without the list of data. One of the ways to do that is to create a new sheet here, so I'll create a sheet at the end here. I'll get rid of the default table from that sheet, I'll drag the chart here on the left to that sheet, and once I do that I can now go into that sheet there and see that I've got Chart 2 in the Sheet, even though it's referring to data back in Sheet 1. So I can reposition that on the page there, and now that' all I'm going to get when I print out Sheet 4. If I go back to Sheet 1 and I change a piece of data, like say the number of peaches to 138, I can see that it's instantly reflected in the data on Sheet 4.
So there's a quick look at using basic charts in iWork Numbers '09. Until next time, this is Gary with MacMost Now.

Comments: 11 Responses to “MacMost Now 460: Creating Charts in iWork 09 Numbers”

    9 years ago

    Thanks, I needed that….!
    If you have any more on (iWork 09 NUMBERS) that would be great.

      9 years ago

      You can always find more videos by looking on the left and choosing “VIdeos By Category” — then look for iWork. There are a few more Numbers tutorials in there.

    Jacqui Cyrus
    9 years ago

    A quick and simple tutorial for using iWork 09 Numbers. Thanks for sharing.

    8 years ago

    Your videos are very helpful. I have an Intel iMac running OS X 10.5.8. I get an error message every time I try to view your videos on your website. I have to go to YouTube in order to see them. Can you tell me how to remedy this situation?
    Thanks in advance.

      8 years ago

      Where (what web page) do you go to to view them. Here at Do you have Flash installed (and up-to-date)? What is the error message, exactly?

    8 years ago

    Can you create charts using data with categories?

      8 years ago

      Not quite sure what you mean by “data with categories.”

    7 years ago

    Hi, I’ve been wondering about this too. I love how the categories can create subtotals — is there a way to chart just the subtotals and the category titles?
    Thank you!

    6 years ago


    How can I create combination charts? The screenshot of iWork shows a chart with a bar and line graph but I can’t seem to find anyone who shows how to do this?


      6 years ago

      If you create a new chart, you can see that the last two options in the picture list are a combination bar + line. Is that what you mean? Seems like those would require two columns of numbers, of course.

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