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How to Make a Prezi

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Cindy DiMascio

on 20 January 2016

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Transcript of How to Make a Prezi

You can zoom
really far out
and you can zoom really far in...
To type:
Click anywhere on the canvas to start typing. Previously you had to stick to the font colors chosen using the Colors and Fonts section, but now you can edit the color of any given block of text using the little color box. You can also justify right, left, or center, or use bullet points.

To insert images, etc., use the toolbar.
The frames and arrows button is very important. Frames (and invisible frames) form the basis of the structure of your Prezi
The Insert button is what you use to give your presentation some visual flair. You can add images and videos, or add symbols and shapes.
The path section is where you can reorder the sequence your Prezi follows:
The Template button is used to decide the overall look and feel of the Prezi. It's best to decide this at the start rather than changing it later. Don't be afraid to use the 'Customize Current Theme' option at the bottom to get the Prezi exactly how you want it.
The Share button is useful as it allows you to download the Prezi, to present offline.
In addition to the basics, it's worth noting how you move around the canvas in edit mode in order to get to the objects you want to edit:

Zooming in an out is most easily done with the mouse wheel, although there are plus and minus icons ever present on the far right of the screen in Edit mode which do the same thing.

Clicking and holding anywhere there ISN'T an object will then allow you to move the canvas around under your mouse pointer.
1. Create your Structure First
Here are eight tips to make a really good Prezi:
Slightly less good Prezi are often characterized by a 'made it up as they went along' vibe. It's difficult to create a good Prezi on the fly, as you just keep adding more and more things and it spirals (sometimes literally) out of control.

It's easy to avoid this by just jotting down on a piece of paper what you want to put on it, and then arranging it into some kind of structure before you get as far as opening Prezi.

It's best to think about the look of the overall canvas right from the start because it's harder to tidy it up and order it once you've filled it up with stuff. It is by no means obligatory to show the whole canvas at once during your presentation, but it is a nice effect to let people see the whole thing, and then zoom them into different parts of it to tell a story. Particularly as, unlike Slides, you can be completely non-linear. You can either plot a path through the entire presentation, or you can leave it open and ask the audience where they'd like to go next.

Building a Prezi is like building a house: you design it first, then you put in the foundations, and then you build the rest of it block by block.
Prezi allows you to choose from set themes (which dictate your color scheme, fonts, and style, or to customize any theme to create your own. What you can't do is mix and match throughout your presentation.

Your theme also has an influence on the size of everything, so it's important to pick your theme early and stick with it. designing your Prezi around its strengths and characteristics. If you decide to change your theme later, it may mean your carefully aligned elements no longer fit together.
2. Choose Your Theme Early
People often complain that Prezis make them 'feel sea-sick.' This is avoidable if the designer positions the materials on his or her Prezi sympathetically, and plots a sensible path between them.
3. Position your Materials Sympathetically
A sure-fire way to make your audience feel ill, is to...
Make changes in perspective
move really quickly between elements
and oscillate wildly around the canvas
There's often no need to do any of this. Try to move around the canvas in a coherent fashion. Only include a couple changes of angle. And most of all:
...do NOT go upside down without good reason!
Just because Prezi can do lots of amazing things, doesn't mean you have to use all of the features, all of the time... If in doubt, try to construct and pace your presentation much like you would with slides, making the occasional feature out of Prezi's increased flexibility.
Many of the creative opportunities with Prezi come from use of scale. The canvas is all-but-unlimited in size, so you can have huge discrepancies between your biggest object and your smallest - whatever you navigate to, or click on, will fill the screen when it zooms in anyway.

It's great to have at least one extreme change of scale, but that shouldn't become a gimmick your presentation relies on.

My advice is to make everything bigger than you think you need to start off with, allowing you to cram in lots of smaller stuff later on.
4. Understand SCALE in Prezi
Something that's really important to remember is, images will fill the screen when you zoom in on them - so if they're originally smaller than full-screen size, they WILL look grainy. Let's take our picture on the left as an example - it looks fine now because it's not full screen, but if we zoom in on just the picture...
5. Utilize Frames (and Invisible Frames)
Frames are the way you control what the viewer sees, and how close up they see it
You can use visible frames to give your presentation structure and visual identity
There are three types of visible frames, which will look different according to the theme you've selected
Square brackets
Filled rectangle
Invisible Frames, on the other hand, don't get used as much but are actually more useful.

The first, and main, use, is to control how far you zoom in on an object. It can be used to focus the audience's attention on certain things, or group objects together. For example, just this chunk of text - or the whole section on frames.
What is Prezi?
Prezi is a dynamic presentation tool that allows you to present your information any way you want. Zooming in and out, jumping from one place to another, adding pictures, documents, and even PowerPoint presentations are all some of the possibilities available to you in Prezi.
How does it work?
There's an initial learning curve (because it works so differently than the Office suite we're all used to), but once you understand the basics, it soon becomes easier to make a nice Prezi than a nice PowerPoint.
Because the size and location of objects and text is controlled by sliding the mouse in Prezi, it can be trickier to achieve uniformity of style than with a set of slides, say, where you can decide that the title font size will be 24, and the body font size will be 12.

Prezi will help you align things. the 'graph paper' effect on the canvas in Edit mode should be useful in this area, but Prezi will also show you when objects are locked into line with other objects nearby, by way of a dotted blue line.
6. Aim for a Uniform Style
It looks like this:
Ultimately, the easiest way to ensure a cohesive style is to literally copy and paste things and then edit them. So, if you want chunk of text A to match chunk of text B, just copy chunk of text A and paste it into the new position, then edit to say whatever you want chunk of text B to say... Same goes with positioning frames and so on.
The 'path' of your Prezi (the order in which you go from object to object on the canvas) is very important to the user experience. You can of course have a totally free-form Prezi where users just click on frames or hidden frames, but most Prezis require a path to guide the viewer (or, if you're presenting live, to guide you) through the presentation.

You create the path by clicking 'Edit Path' from the left-hand side of the edit screen, and then just clicking on the objects you want to navigate to, in the order in which you wish to get to them. As discussed in previous sections, making the path a logical, sensible sequence is probably a better bet than making giant leaps across the canvas in random directions.
7. Plot a Good Path
It's easy enough to change the path (by dragging the relevant number from one object to another) and you can add to it too, by using the little dot in between two numbers - just drag the relevant dot onto whatever object you want to add.

Finally, you can get rid of a state in the path entirely by grabbing the relevant number, and dragging it somewhere on the canvas where there aren't any objects at all - let go, and it'll disappear.
8. Show Some Restraint!
A vital tip is to not let your imagination run away with you when creating a Prezi...You can do all sorts of amazing things, but the best Prezis are often the ones which are 80% attractive but sensible, and 20% dazzling and amazing. It it's 80% crazy and wild, then there's a danger people can become immune to the wow factor.
The most important thing is to ALWAYS THINK ABOUT THE AUDIENCE! Your Prezi should be about communication rather than showing off - don't let the medium become the message...
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