How to Create ‘Moving’ Presentations
Nick Butcher
4253

I feel like I could write an essay on my experiences in this. I’ve worked across a few different platforms over the past couple of years. 55" Multi-taction tables, TV screens, iPads, Mobiles and Desktops. I’ve tried where possible to make the communication of interaction and motion a core element. But it has been a continuous battle against the elements it seems. There’s no one great solution unfortunately. I used to have animations created in AE and exported as movies. These were fit for purpose especially with the multi-taction and TV stuff, being able to show motion on the specific devices, from style tiles to entire screens. But it was very time consuming to do. Also the aspect ratios didn’t fit the presentation deck format.

Then I moved on to Keynote, the support of video was really good, but I found the size of files difficult to work around especially when most of my clients were abroad in places where the Wi-Fi was not great. Also most of the clients are PC users.

So my next brainwave came part due to the platform, and part to do with trying to solve the above problems of embedding movie files. Lately I’ve been working on a lot of websites, so I’ve used Squarespace as the platform of delivery. I set up a file in Sketch, then export sections of 1440x900, this works well for my static “slides” (it’s actually one long scroll). Then for motion I screen-record and convert MOVs to GIFs using GIF brewery (ingenious software). Then after a bit of size optimisation, this is imported into Squarespace. This is great for showing best practice examples, or even micro animations which I’ve created. But the con is being able to lay these out in the way I would like design-wise. If I’m demonstrating a full prototype from Principle, I upload the video to Vimeo, and embed the link to Squarespace.
Overall it’s been a decent way to present. I wanted to get my clients within the browser, also it’s great being able to share a link which only requires a connection. I can even save an offline HTML which contains everything other than the vimeos (which I can play locally in presentation situations without internet). However the main con, has been client based comments, especially as sometimes the Sketch artboard size exceeds the PDF limit. I’m looking into advance SQSP ways of navigating the client comment issue.

Finally I’ve been exploring the use of Marvel or Invision. Both support GIFs, and can handle to Vimeo links, and can also do the client commenting. Also the updating/replacing of content is far simpler. Then add the Sketch integration — hopefully for the win. So I have a presentation upcoming in a couple of weeks, where I’ll likely trial this. I’m still in parallel working on a SQSP solution. But think with the Marvel style solution it could provide a slightly better outcome overall. 
The main drawback I’ve found on this so far, is with the subscription plans. With my company's Business SQSP, the price is pretty good, and we literally have unlimited pages. Whereas the same with Marvel is around £56 per month (Although we do use Marvel for its more traditional means).

Anyhow that’s my experience — it’s a real mind bender trying to find the best solution but it’s a challenge I quite like. If nothing else it beats showing static PDFs even though as a format PDFs are heavily embedded in my clients workflow.

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