Pecha Kucha

Last night I had my first non-work-related public appearance in Singapore at Pecha Kucha Singapore #2.

The concept of Pecha Kucha Night is based on an exercise devised by designers in Japan to facilitate sharing ideas efficiently. Pecha Kucha Nights are made up of creative folks delivering Powerpoint/Keynote presentations with the following restriction: exactly 20 slides for 20 seconds each. My new friend Graham Perkins explained the Pecha Kucha introduced me to the idea and asked if I'd be interested in participating in an upcoming event (and acting as the official American on the bill, in honor of 4th of July). It sounded like a fun challenge, so I signed up.

Delivering presentations is not a problem for me, I've been doing it professionally for years now. But I'm used to blathering about a subject for three hours at a pop. But, doing so for 6 minutes 40 seconds is hard. Every slide the same length is hard.

I chose to present the challenge that filmakers face (unlike painters, for instance) in having only three basic aspect ration to choose from when creating their images. Ask my students, my normal aspect ratio lecture is 2-3 hours long. I liked the idea of dicussing one of the limiting factors of shot design in a format that is itself limiting. I *heart* meta communication.


I didn't have as much time to prepare my Keynote stack as I would have liked, but all things considered it went well. I did feel like I was on a quiz show, however, complete with giant digital clock counting down next to me on the stage. Not having control of my own slides was kinda weird, but liberating too. 

The other presenters were all interesting and most stuck to the original intent of the format by presenting their own artwork. Beca and I agreed that our favorite presenter of the evening was ZXEROKOOL. His designs were really great and his delivery and presence were fantastic.

I'm already thinking about the next one in three months as well as ways to get more folks involved. Check out the links below and see if your city has Pecha Kucha nights coming up! I saw events this month in San Francisco, Los Angeles and Honolulu… 

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