applied art for the web

Presentation tips

Presentations are part of many jobs, even more so now with increased online work. You might love presenting your ideas to a team of nice people, getting feedback and enjoy this process. Or you might not ... In any case, there is always much to be learned from others and improving your presentation skills can only be a good step forward.

common advice for presenting well

One of the most frequently repeated pieces of advice is that you should over-prepare and be ready for failed tech of all sorts.

in short: prepare for disaster :D

If you cannot present for technical reasons - have your slides ready to share instead. Prepare a PDF as fallback ~ which can then be shared online, or emailed to everyone instead. You won't be able to prepare for every possible mishap, of course - but a minor setback will not freak you out as you're prepared :)

A good backup plan is to keep your slides online — be that as HTML presentation or mere download link to the file. Better safe than sorry.

a quick note on my own slides

As I usually mention during my talks, the slides I prepare for you and our sessions are not a very good example, design aside, of an effective presentation per se. Bear in mind that the purpose mine have is quite different to a presentation - they are specifically designed for teaching and—post-talk—to become a useful resource for you to review in your own time. My aim is to include plenty of information for recap and revision purposes. Hence there tends to be more information than I would include otherwise.

Here are a few examples of beautiful slide decks by some of my favourite speakers. Of course these slides are a mere glimpse into the topic but I hope their content and design will inspire you :)

Veerle Pieters

[view slide on speakerdeck]
A burst of colour showing the design journey from sketch to final.

Paul Lloyd & Andy Hume

[view slide on speakerdeck]
An excellent example of nicely set type and effective use of larger images.

Trent Walton

[view slide on speakerdeck]
Perfect alignment and bold type :)

Peter Gasston

[view slide on speakerdeck]
Type variations in context for technical detail

Andy Clarke

[view slide on speakerdeck]
A humongous slide deck for a full day's workshop - included here for inspiration :)