Seeing Nancy Duarte and Australia

December 1, 2008

Got wind of the fact that Nancy Duarte was speaking at the Soho Apple store in New York last week, so hopped on the subway last Tuesday and went down to hear her present.
Looking online I see that she has presented this material many times before. Whatever. She was really engaging, and her presentation was so personal that she came across as caring about us as individuals, as people who care about what they do as professionals, as people interested enough in this craft to come out on a chilly evening in New York. She cared about taking that time to convey that message –- caring about your audience —  not because she made one cent from this, but because she is obviously passionate about her passion.

australia_movie1

A Pre-Show that Paid Off

First up on the big screen in the Apple store was all those Mac vs. PC ads – one after another. Kind of cool and cute on TV, but really, really annoying when played in some long sequence, something they were never designed for. Also so loud that you couldn’t escape!
Then, however, a mini documentary about sound design for Baz Luhrmann’s new movie, Australia. Baz was speaking at the store the next night – kudos to Apple for cool, interesting and engaging programming. I’ve never thought much about sound in movies, other than all the obvious dialog. Even in the quietest of quiet moments, there’s the whisper of wind, the rustle of a garment. This totally interesting short movie explained in layman’s terms how all that is conceived, captured, and integrated into the finished product.
It made me go see the movie this weekend! It made me think again about how every detail in a presentation counts. Fonts, color, spacing, pacing, how every tiny thing says, “I care,” or even more importantly, “I care about my audience.”

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