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October 20, 2009


Presentations Training

I very much enjoy the perspective and curious notions that I glean from this site. Thanks for putting together such great insights on design and Japanese forms. Subarashi desu, ne!


i have a question iam asking myself for a longer time now.. how do you do the barcharts on your example slides?
thanks for a answer and your great book

Stephen Lead

I think you're a bit harsh there, G Blanston. Most of us enjoy Garr's perspectives on life in Japan, and can learn some valuable presentation lessons from his analogies.

If you hate it so much, go watch a cluttered PowerPoint slide.


Good lord "G. Blanston"! *Of course* most houses and apartments in Japan today are too crowded and too full of clutter! I get that just fine -- I live here and see it daily. It is a blog post -- blog post must be short. I'm sorry that I can not go into the details of the negatives of over consumption, etc. Clutter is all too common. But what is common is not only of interest to me and others. What is of interest is what is good and there is a lot of good to be learned from historical Japanese architecture, design, and general sensibilities. If you are not interested in hearing another stupid gaijin babbling on and on I guess there is nothing here for you. No worries. Cheers! :-)


Excellent post - linking design and culture together.... As I look around me I realise I am suffering from too much clutter. Time to apply some of these principles! Thanks, Garr!

Michael Eury

Love this post Garr and am really looking forward to your new book, Hopefully it is crammed full, in a very designful way, with even more great stuff!

Lynn Jericho

I am so grateful for your posts - they are a focal point for my creative space. I build structures for the design of the inner life. In each of the many rooms of the soul there is a need for an evolving focus. I work with the image of the Inner Year - the seasons of the soul - so your posts always bring an insight or a perspective on design that I bring into my teleseminars. Wisdom must ring true in both our inner and outer designs and spaces.

Now for a little neuroscience. In each hemisphere of the brain there is a tiny, tiny spot called the locus cereleus (latin for the blue spot). The LC activates the capacity to gaze! and signals the release of norepinehrine in the adrenals which supports the ability to focus and the feeling of a centered and capable self. With low levels of norepinephrine we struggle with ADD and ADHD and we will tend to clutter our lives with unsuccessful substitutes for a sense of self.
Wise work, Garr. Thanks.

a happy uni student

Thank you Garr, you have totally changed the way I think about presentation and now I actually enjoy designing the slides to make them less boring and more attractive :)

I just finished a presentation today and I got some very good feedbacks from my peers. So thanks again!

PS.I really want to get your book but I couldn't find it in the kinokuniya bookshop here in Australia :( I'll look harder.

Brian Rice

Garr. I am one more fan and benefactor of your ideas. And this post had a graciousness and warmth about it that was delightful. Thank-you and much joy to you in your new home.


Hi Garr, I'm completely surprised as there is a person came from oversea who has great perception and can convey essence of culture and thought of our country in English.
Moreover, you've lived in Japan for a long time!
Actually, your writing is a little too hard for me to read as I'm not good at English, but I'll check it out for my training :) because of your weblog is really interesting for me.
Thanks your great work!

Ronald Curtis

Hi Garr,

I just wanted to say that I love your blog and that you have been a great source of inspiration in my life. Ever since I read your book 'presentation zen' about a year ago, I have slowly but surely shifted my way of thinking towards the right side of my brain. And with great results!

For instance, last semester I did the whole presentation for my group and we came first. All thanks to your book and your teachings. Also, just last week our group got selected to redo our presentation in front of a panel of employers and the chance to win $1000. We're doing the presentation this Thursday. Win, lose, or draw, I am happy to have come this far and will continue to spread the word on your wonderful teachings.

Thank you Garr!


I wanted to say I am a diehard reader of your blog. Thanks for contributing to the public speaking community


Here is a Tokonoma which appeared as part of a slide set on Fast Company


Can't wait for the new book


Thanks, Mike. That is a very unusual tokonoma to say the least :-)


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