Visual Storytelling - T. Benjamin Larsen's Blog

The making of a presentation (part 5)

This is part 5 of «the making of 'Cultivating Creativity'», a presentation I entered in’s «World’s Best Presentation Contest».

Challenging words

One of the challenges of making a slide-presentation that has to work on its own, is to find the right balance between text and imagery.

The complete slide-deck in all its «glory»

As I've mentioned on several occasions, I believe slide-presentations should be predominantly visual and compliment the information given orally. When making this presentation however, speech was not an option. Needless to say, text would have to do some of the job. This was probably the hardest part for me. If I were to give the presentation live I would have lots to say. I would talk about how inspiration might elude you when you desperately need it. How that great idea might appear just as you were about to fall asleep. I would also augment the key-slides with additional information e.g. Read: Novels, newspapers, magazines, blogs, cereal packages - anything.

Now, I could just have delivered all this information in text-form, but it would dull down the presentation. I figured the best way to solve it was to make the viewers fill in most of the blanks themselves. I'd only use a few key-sentences highlighting the message of how it is impossible to force creativity. I repeated the key sentence 'you cannot force creativity' to make sure it registered with the viewer. I am still not 100% sure I pulled off the balance between simplicity and information but hopefully I wasn't too far off.

Finishing touches

And that was it. I read through the whole thing a couple of times, made some small changes to the font-sizes etc. but as there was no way to make advanced transitions and the timing was up to the viewer, there was little else I could do. As presentations go I think it works out reasonably well. It does not overload the viewer with information and [hopefully] the key-message should be easily grasped. I am also quite pleased with the fact that I manage to keep it as short as I did. As this is the final part of this informal 'making of' I would just like to say that I hope you found some part of it interesting. If nothing else it should serve as a glimpse into one person’s creative process.