Just viewed a TED talk called “The silent drama of Photography.” Though the talk by Sebastiao Salgado is about a moving story about how he dropped a career as an economist (PhD in economics) and got into photography, how photography almost killed him, how he got back to photography ; the talk has a deep call to action — bring back the forests.

[ted id=1729]

Sebastiao is not a native English speaker (he is Brazilian), but he presents beautifully. At a whole new level. Being a big presentation enthusiast, some of my observations are:

  • Beautifully simple language. No complicated words, talks, jargon.
  • Punctuated by short periods of showing photographs. Two things stood out here. Each time he wanted to show some photographs, his tone would be of such humility that it would almost be like, requesting to indulge him a bit. Second thing was, he did not speak a word during those photographs. No description. When he took it. Why? Who? Nothing. He let the photographs sink in to the audience. Powerful technique.
  • Body language showing a lot of sincerity.
  • Just one joke, but that too, bringing a deep meaning to it. About how trees help soak water for us. (Relating it to drying hair for people with normal hair vs his bald head).
  • Call to arms. At the end of the talk, he says – “It is easy. I did it. And so can you.”. Collectively we can do it. In a very non intrusive way, he also says, we did it in Brazil, but it looks like you guys (in America) need it too. So get going. Do it.