Video Sample: The Tour

This 3-minute self-playing video — made in PowerPoint — is for you if you have an important presentation coming up and you are scoping out resources for help. Come on a tour of the design principles, check out some sample pages, and consider holistic thinking around presentation design — and take your next presentation to the next level! Project design notes follow. 


Project notes

As a general note, if I were to do try a video like this again, I would probably do it in a software specifically designed for making videos. Photodex ProShow Producer or Camtasia are well-reviewed platforms for this type of work, with a superior video editing workspace and audio controls and smaller file sizes than slideware. 

The title slide

The title slide simulates a mask effect -- from the background image of the city I "punched out" text that I turned into vectors, creating little letter-shaped windows. A color video clip runs on the layer behind this mask. (An alternative to achieve this effect is to Fragment the video into vectors; this can crash PowerPoint.) The mask has a Grow animation applied that adds dynamic movement to the type. This slide also establishes a visual language of urban black and white photography; a corporate blue color palette (the original sky blue a bit turned up to be closer to the saturation of the blue on my website); and a tour theme that is used for the remainder of the video. 

The "first five slides"

This presentation uses a "first five slides" approach based on Cliff Atkinson's "Beyond Bullet Points" – the Setting slide orients the audience; the audience becomes the main character with the Role slide; the Point A headline defines a specific challenge the audience faces; the Call to Action focuses the audience; and, the Point B slide which shows the audience a vision of where it wants to be. Here we also set up an A-to-B rhetorical device: "you are here" — burdened — and "you want to be here" — on the next level.

First Stop: The design principles

The design principles — alignment, repetition, contrast, hierarchy, balance — are the key to any good design, including slides. For example, here we introduce a four-column grid that would be invisible to the viewer, to enforce consistent alignment. 

Second Stop: Sample Pages

In this section we show off some makeover pages, infographics, typography, animation, maps, and work with video. 

Third Stop: Think holistically

I apply a holistic approach to presentation design that considers all stages of the design lifecycle and key aspects of the project. It begins with my highly detailed intake process that I can apply for any client and communication challenge. 

End pages

Here we tie back to our A-to-B theme. The end slide uses the same photo from the title slide; it is now in full color rather than black and white. We also use the mask effect again to give some energy to the critical contact information.