Thursday, December 03, 2015

10 Tips for a Great Photo Presentation

Getting up in front of an audience to deliver an entertaining and inspiring photo presentation is one of my favourite things to do - right after being outside shooting photos. I've had a chance to present to groups of all kinds, from a dozen people in a church basement to keynotes at large venues with a thousand people. Each time, it's equally fun and exciting! Here are 10 tips that I've used over the years to deliver presentations with impact:  
  1. Start your presentation with a bang - a great joke or compelling story to capture the attention of the audience.  
  2. Tell personal and/or humorous stories that convey your passion. The audience wants to be entertained as much as they want to learn a few tips.   
  3. Create a point form outline, but don't script your entire show. Use a few key speaking points to illustrate each of your segments or concepts. The more you get to know your presentation, the better it will flow. Your goal is to deliver a fluid and engaging talk that comes across more naturally and less scripted.
  4. Use minimal text on your slides (I can't stress this point enough)!  If the crowd wanted to read, they would have stayed home and picked up a book.  
  5. Include photos of yourself in action. It makes your content more real and personal.
  6. Show, don't tell. Comparison images are the best way to demonstrate concepts and techniques. For example, to show the effect of using a filter include photos taken with and without it.   
  7. Bring some relevant gear with you or interesting props. We're camera nerds and love to see the gear you use! 
  8. The ideal length for a presentation is 45-55 minutes plus a few minutes for questions. Keep it short and punchy. Leave the audience wanting more. 
  9. Vary your pace. I use a ton of photos (200) in a typical presentation. At times I'll breeze through a series of images and sometimes I linger on slides.
  10. Don't take any questions until the end, then take 3-5 questions out loud and stick around to mingle personally. You don't want to hold up the entire crowd with endless questions. 
I hope these tips help you with your next presentation! If you have additional tips, please feel free to share them in the comments. Thanks!

Ethan Meleg 

Note: This article is copyright. Feel free to share the link, but do not save/copy the text and repost elsewhere without permission. 


  1. Great tips! Thank you!

  2. Thanks for the tip Ethan. Especially #10 is helpful.

  3. Thanks Ethan! Your timing is perfect. I am scheduled to a presentation to Nature London's Birding wing in January, and these tips are great! I have always enjoyed your presentations!

  4. Thanks very much for your comments!

  5. Great tips Ethan! I couldn't agree with you more though I used to give one particular 480 slide presentation that took precisely 42 minutes. Blink and you'd miss two slides. :-)

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