[Originally published September 16, 2010.]
I am the Orson Welles of PowerPoint 2010.
I don’t let marketing get in the way of a potential masterpiece. You see I don’t create mere presentations. I use technology and the language of our times to evoke human emotions from my audience. I don’t settle for default settings and I’ve never met a template I didn’t break.
I’m not a junior sales manager, I’m a storyteller.
At one point, artists and the alleged tastemakers of society scoffed at the notion of motion pictures. However, generations of innovative film directors have rendered fools of those early dissenters of cinema.
So too will history one day be unkind to those who belittle the artistic merits of my PowerPoint journeys.
My slides are arranged with a careful eye to typography and design; two well trusted guardians of the Modern Arts.
The transitions I select from the pre-determined palette are individually chosen with consideration for both aesthetics and narrative lubrication. As Alfred Hitchcock once furthered the cinematic transition of the radial wipe, so do I pioneer with the provocative primacy of the PowerPoint Fire Transition.
No two of my PowerPoints are the same. While I have yet to craft my Citizen Kane, I consider the PowerPoint I gave at the conference in Atlanta last year to be my Taxi Driver. The regional sales meeting in Denver was my Ishtar. And right now I’m experimenting with 3D technology to create a visually immersive PowerPoint experience that will rival the cinematic wizardry of James Cameron’s Avatar.
I don’t use PowerPoint in the same manner as my peers. I am a PowerPoint iconoclast. A PowerPoint auteur. Breathing the spirit of Nouvelle Vague into inspired template tweaked slides. I don’t use PowerPoint to spew hollow facts and meaningless statistics. I aim to deliver revolutionary corporate poetry into the hearts and minds of marketing vice presidents across this country.
I believe that sometimes a PowerPoint demands five consecutive pages of full bleed abstract images. Just to make people feel. To get mid-level managers to loosen their ties and take off their name card necklaces. Too much logic is the death knell of any PowerPoint pursuit.
When I’m faced with a new PowerPoint, I don’t think about what my manager is expecting. I think about Shakespeare. I think about that feather at the beginning of Forrest Gump. I think about Marlon Brando’s monologue in Apocalypse Now. I wonder how Scorsese would judge my section dividers. I think about how Homer would break the Odyssey down into slides.
I’m trying to figure out how can I use this ubiquitous PowerPoint program as a vehicle to build my legend. To hone my craft. To start the next revolution, not in business, but in art. How can I use this oft-overlooked format to get me into the Tate Modern?
Such is the stuff of my PowerPointing dreams.