Using images in your presentations: Making it work

If you’ve read our previous post on what NOT to do when selecting images for your presentations, you’re all ready to find out how to make images work for you.

Follow these four pointers and your presentation will be picture-perfect!

1) Communicate, don’t decorate

Don’t relegate images to the limited white space available after you’ve sullied the slide with your textual diarrhoea. Instead, allow images to communicate rather than simply decorate. Select an image that affirms the point you are trying to make and then make that image the focus of the entire slide.

Do away with text and use images to communicate

But what about your paragraphs of text and your reams of bullet points? Do away with them! Your role as the presenter is to deliver the verbal message – not have your audience read it or watch you read it.

2) Keep space for text

Of course, there may be times when you want to introduce a short line of text on your slide as an important takeaway for your audience to write down or remember. But how will you fit in in when using a photo background?

The secret is to select images which have some clean space in them, perhaps a blank wall or a cloudless sky. This allows you to include an important point on the slide without the risk of it fading away into a busy background.

Select photos for your presentations with blank space

3) Get creative

When selecting images for your presentations, get creative. If you’re trying to talk about memory, don’t use a picture of a person scratching their head, consider what might be more unexpected while still demonstrating the concept – perhaps an elephant? Because we all know elephants never forget!

Pick images that create surprise

Unexpected images will be more memorable and stand out in your audience’s minds.

4) Follow a style

There are heaps of great images you can use – photographs, icons, illustrations, cartoons, sketches… the list goes on! But don’t throw them all in together. Opt for a consistent style – choose the type of images that would best bring out your message, and stick with it.

To take this even further, opt for consistent colours (perhaps your brand colours), image filters, perspectives and themes in selecting pictures. This creates a sense of cohesion around your presentation and your brand.

Style your images so they look similar across your presentationsCreate consistency across your slidesChoose similar filters, colours and styles across your slides

Make your presentation a work of art by following these top tips!

Send pictures of your masterpiece slides to hello@showandtell.guru – we’d love to see them.