Have Your Fonts and Present Them Too

One of the most irritating things about presentation software (Keynote and PowerPoint both) is that trying to move a presentation to a different computer can be a nightmare – especially with fonts. If those fonts don’t reside on the new system, your software will select what it thinks are appropriate replacements from the fonts installed on the new computer. Either you limit your presentations to the few basic fonts found on most systems or you develop your own work arounds. Since I’m a font fanatic, I’ve taken the work-around route.

Beyond Bullet Points

As you can see from this example, I’m not a big fan of bullet points in my presentation graphics. I learned a long time ago that great graphics would be remembered much longer than a screen full of text. And, when I do include text, it’s an important design element. Fonts help make that happen. So, I have to make sure those fonts travel with the presentation.

I have Keynote on my iPad and prefer to use it for presenting so it’s limited number of fonts was a pain until I stumbled onto this work-around. Today, I create most of my presentations on my Mac. That’s where all the good fonts are. Once I’ve built a presentation and everything’s just right, I’ll export the slides as images then create a new presentation inserting those images – one per slide. This serves two purposes. First, I can now “take” those fonts with me and second, it reduces the size of my presentation – especially those slides with multiple layers of graphics, photos and text.  And, I still have the working copy of the presentation should I need to make changes.


Yes, this does mean I can’t take advantage of Keynote’s actions feature on text elements but I never did use them much in presentations. (I do love them for making cards though.) I can still include multimedia elements – like a video – on a slide. It just takes a bit more effort. And, since I can now present from my iPad mini – which is a lot lighter than a laptop – it’s worth that effort.

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