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Before you dive into creating your prezi I have a few best practices to share with you. First, let's talk about screen resolution. As a presenter, most projectors you'll be using will be set at 1024 x 768 resolution. That's 1024 pixels wide by 768 tall. So for the best preview of your presentation, you may want to switch your display to 1024 x 768 early on in your creation process and get a preview of what your audience will see. Prezi does make it easy for you to create presentations at 1024 x 768.
It's set up to 4:3 aspect ratio by default, no matter what your current screen resolution. It also gives you some hints to size your content to fit proportionally into that 4:3 ratio. We'll get into more specifics later when we create frames, but I wanted to get you thinking in 4:3 early on. Prezi is not an infinite zooming canvas, even though it may seem to be. So when you're editing if you zoom too far out or too far in, you'll get an error message, and you'll also see that your zooming is no longer smooth. You do have to go pretty far in and far out to reach this limitation, but keep it in mind if you're an extreme zoomer.
Whenever possible use vector art. This is art that's created using vector drawing programs such as Illustrator or CorelDraw. These programs use math to draw the shapes, lines, and points to create art that can be scaled up and down and maintain crisp edges. Vector art is best for logos, cartoons, and most illustrations. As you can see, the image on the left is vector, and it's nice and crisp. That's in PDF format. And the image on the right is a JPEG, and it's pretty fuzzy. If you're importing a photograph, be sure to use a resolution that is as close to your final display resolution as possible.
For example, if you want it to fill the screen, you'll want the image to be 1024 x 768. And don't zoom in so much on a photo that it looks pixelated and blurry. If you're having trouble with crisp images in JPEG or PNG format, use a PDF instead. For some reason Prezi likes PDFs. I'll give you some additional tips about images later in the course when I show you how to import them into your prezi. And learn the keyboard shortcuts. This will save you time and really help you get into the flow of creating a prezi. Don't let your path be precious. Unless I'm telling a very linear story, I often will completely clear my Prezi's path and redraw it.
More often than not, I find a better way to move through the information. This goes back to a story my dad told me about when he was in art school. He had labored for hours and hours on a drawing. The instructor came over to take a look and when he asked my dad what he thought of it, he said, "I think it's good. I captured the lighting," and before he could finish, the instructor picked it up and tore it in half, throwing the pieces on the floor. He said to my shocked father, "No art is precious. You can do better." It was a bit harsh but a point well taken: don't be afraid to start over.
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