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June 2009

Making an impact with text & images

Here's yet another example of combining imagery, text, animation, and audio to make an impact in a short amount of time. This 3-minute video presentation called Built to Last won first prize in The Congress for the New Urbanism video contest a few weeks ago. The rules for the contest were simple: "Create a 3-minute maximum video that illustrates how the principles of New Urbanism - density, design and walkability - can effectively respond to current environmental challenges that we face." Watch the video below on Youtube.

Presenting large

While most of us do not have the skills or tools to create a video like this, many people can actually present live to similar visual displays that they create themselves using only off-the-shelf tools like PowerPoint or Keynote (and photo-editing software). It's all actually quite simple: Big type and large full-bleed images (and great ideas; that's the hard part). Of course, if you present to visuals in this genre on a stage, you may use less text on screen and slow it way down at times — even allowing the screen to fade to black — to allow the visuals the opportunity to support your narration at a pace the audience can connect with. At other times, however,  it may be your narration that supports the powerful imagery. It can feel like a dance, a dance between you and the images and the audience. In this sense, then, when you use large, powerful imagery, you and the screen and the audience are not three things but one.

Here are some quick images below to help you visualize how you might "present large" at a future conference, etc. The point is not to suggest that you create and use visuals exactly like the video example above in your live talks, but perhaps this example will spark your imagination as you continue to think about ways to present differently and more visually.


If the pacing is right, you can even present live to similar powerful visuals.

H/T Mike in Perth