Best way of working for deck design

Hello folks!

I have a question concerning the creation of decks/presentations. I was wondering if people here have any advice or experience on the matter. For a project I’m creating template decks for a company. Of course the platform/software should be easy to use for everybody and I’d like the end product to look good (obviously). And we all know marketeers, consultants etc etc, who just throw their content in presentations and after that it’s the designers job to pull it all together - a process that always takes up to much time.

So I hate Powerpoint - Keynote is a bit better, but of course not useable by anyone. I’ve been thinking about Canva for this project but I don’t have any experience with it. I was also thinking about Prezi, but no experience with that as well…

Some tips would be nice!


As much as you hate Powerpoint, would you reeeeeaaally suggest Canva?
:rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

Getting over your “hate” for Powerpoint may not be fashionable, but it’s the correct tool for the job. Working through the project might help you learn its strengths.

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Why exactly do you hate Powerpoint?

I hate PowerPoint too but then I never need to use it. Get good at using it and chances are you won’t hate it anymore.

I am not a massive fan, but that is probably more to do with the thousand presentations we’ve all sat through where people produce bulleted Arial on dark blue backgrounds that just reiterates what is being said, rather than complementing and elaborating on the words being spoken.

No different to photoshop in the hands of someone who has no idea what they are doing. Powerpoint is up there will MS Word, because it is part of every office’s set of tools so completely clueless people use it to make posters and presentations.

That said, I am not a fan of the usability of the software at the best of times (either Word or Powerpoint). Their awful bench mark to type hand layout has become the accepted aesthetic norm. It is everywhere and it makes me cringe every time.

Can you expand on that statement? I’m not sure I understand what it means.

I wish Adobe would come out with a presentation tool that was compatible with PPT but gave us the tools and interface we’re used to with AI. That would be an Adobe product I could get excited about.

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I am no fan of MS Office. But I will say that the most recent versions of PowerPoint are leaps and bounds better than they were 5 or 10 years ago. IMO. MS Word is generally garbage and bloated. MS PowerPOint is still somewhat bloated, but it does have more precise controls over size, position, and having more nuanced control IMO. Thankfully I only have to work in PowerPoint maybe once or twice a month for a day or so, but it is actually not that bad to use once you wrap your head around it.

Now, the downside is, as you mentioned, at the end of the day, no matter how well you build a template. End users will copy in a terrible excel table or crappy word art, or use Comic Sans throughout.

I might not like PowerPoint, and you might not like PowerPoint or Keynote, but they’re still the right tools for the job for making a visual presentation deck.

Yes, they’re very different from the Adobe apps, and for graphic designers, frustrating. But they’re designed using terminology and workflows that make their use a bit more straightforward for the average users for which they’re intended.

You can build a PDF presentation in InDesign, I suppose. You can even take advantage of InDesign’s animation capabilities, which are similar to PowerPoints. However, those InDesign animations just run once the page is loaded. The presenter can’t control them to highlight information on the slides.

A couple of years ago, I designed a PowerPoint deck for the president of the University of Utah to accompany her presentation to the Utah State Legislature as part of a budget hearing. She got lots of good comments from the legislators on the PowerPoint deck. Of more importance, she got what she asked for from the legislature.

Yeah, the PowerPoint interface and limitations suck, but as awful as they might be, they’re better than the alternatives. It’s still possible to do some nice things in PowerPoint, and it’s not that difficult to use if you dive into it with an open mind without trying to force it to be what it isn’t.

Sorry,! A bit of corrective typing going on. It should have read, ‘…type and layout…’

I meant by that, that the world is full of an aesthetic governed by Microsoft’s default settings, which are, it has to be said, pretty hideous.

I’ve always wondered why they haven’t done that. They’ve produced plenty of other little-used niche products. I’m sure an CC-like Adobe version would do as well or better than most of them. InDesign, for example, could easily add presentation capabilities that would kick PowerPoints rear end.

What would really help is embedded fonts. Personally, though, I’d rather have Affinity create it.

Haha I feel ya. I have no experience with Canva, but maybe it would be handy for non designers. I would expect it to be more intuitive for the average person, compared to Powerpoint.

Lousy interface (especially in the Teams desktop app), outdated templates, terrible selection tool, bad integration on Mac.

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