How 3D can help your PowerPoint

Enhance your presentation by going beyond the template

PowerPoint templates are one of the quickest ways in which a professional can relate information to a large group of people quickly and visually. As such free templates for PowerPoint have populated the internet, making for rather repetitive selections. Those wishing to break away from the cliché and the mundane must therefore have other elements within their template to engage the viewer. And while adding the transitions and the animations available in the program may give a low level of engagement with the PowerPoint, 3D elements can dynamically change the level of professionalism in your template. Here is how.

Background images

The background pictures which are generally provided for PowerPoint images is rather restrictive. Gradients and clip art dominate the software. However, to bring a new level of dynamics to your template, use a 3D model and render out an interior space. Since you can adjust the opacity and the saturation of the picture, you can still keep the color scheme of the presentation, but now your background will have depth.

In addition to having a static 3D image as your background, you can also use a 3D render to adjust your template for more personal use. For example, if you open PowerPoint and use the standard Gallery settings, it is pretty cookie cutter in nature. However, if you were to change the background image from the standard wood floor white look to a museum or art gallery render, the feel would look different. The same is true for office spaces. If you want your viewers to associate your presentation with your office, take a HD picture of your office and use it as the background.

3D Models

PowerPoint templates tend to be rather flat in their design. Sure, you can get some drop shadow and some beveling options, but adding 3D elements is one of the best ways in which to make a certain part of the presentation POP. The good thing about 3D models is that there are a ton of free and inexpensive options available. Places like CGTrader have models in a range of categories from the anime warrior to the suit and tie politician. Don’t need a character? Use a prop. Chairs, furnishings, homes, pencils, cars, you name it are all things which can drive the focal point and the message you are trying to convey.

When picking your 3D models, ensure that you have the software to render a PNG image of the character. This will provide you with a clear background around the character while still giving the character the depth, light, and shadows needed. Should you not have the software you could either (a) download the trial version or (b) contact the artist and ask that person to render out the character in PNG format.

Transitions for animations

Should you really wish to bring up the level of your PowerPoint template, you can do some animations using 3D renders and motion paths. This is a bit of an advanced process, but there are a great many tutorials on how you can add such transitions and animations to your scene. Doing cross reveals, sliders on a motion path, and revolves are a great way in which you can couple your 3D, your static text, and animations to bring your presentation to a new level.

Keep in mind that you can also add YouTube videos into your presentation as well. Should you wish, for example, to show the entire space of an architectural conceptualization to a potential client in your PowerPoint presentation, you would need to have a 3D model of the building and then render out the 360 of the space. In order to present the video without having to open several programs, link the video via embedded link into your presentation. When designing your template, be cautious of the number of videos you embed as this could potentially cause slags and freezing of the presentation depending on the machine and version of the software that you own.

Note: Animations should be kept to a reasonable level as adding too many moving parts to your PowerPoint template could be distracting to the viewer, taking away from the information you are trying to relate.

Go beyond the template

Whether you choose the subtle 3D or the more dynamic options, using 3D in your PowerPoint templates is sure to add dynamics and something unique to the presentation. Remember, people are more prone to remember visual data. Present your viewers with something that sets your presentation apart from the other cliché templates and presentations which are available. It does not have to be cinematic to be impactful, it just need to be impactful to be remembered. How you do that is up to your imagination.

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