Sunday, January 31, 2016

TEDx Birmingham Journey

Thank you for traveling along and allowing me to share this art path with you. It has taken an unexpected and fun little trek.

I'm honored and humbled to be a speaker at the TEDx Birmingham, March 12, 2016, event. (Edited, my talk is now up on YouTube!)

It has been quite a learning process to write this talk. One of the toughest parts was narrowing down all the things I could say about art and focusing in on the one point I really wanted to make. Tough to do when you are passionate about so many aspects of a subject.

The TEDx Birmingham organizers have been fantastic during the entire process giving information about how to craft a great talk, giving us deadlines to meet, and assigning speech coaches to each of us.

There will be 15 speakers and Pure Imagination is the theme. I will be sharing some of my work and speaking about how when we experience representational art, by making it and viewing it, we gain empathy for each other and gather insight into what it means to be human. 

I was asked to submit in July 2015, found out I was accepted in October and immediately started working on the talk. To help me prepare, I read a very interesting book, Resonate by Nancy Duarte that is specifically about presenting visual stories.

Yesterday, I had my first focus group presentation. In my group was Jonathan Owen, Donna Dukes and Rubin Pillay, MD, PhD. Their talks were fascinating. You can see more about them on the TEDx Birmingham's speaker page. It was great to get feedback from impartial strangers.

We all got tips and advice for the presentation delivery. Six weeks till the talk gives us time to memorize it better, try for a more conversational manner, put emphasis in the right spots, vary the cadence, and figure out what to do with our hands and body.

When & Where: Saturday, March 12, 2016, Alys Stephens Center, Birmingham, AL. The event will also be live-streamed, and on the TEDxBirmingham site after the event. All the info is on their website.

Tickets: Seats are limited so you must apply for a ticket.

*Applications will be open until Midnight Jan 31.* More information about the speakers, program and tickets may be found on the website.

A little more news, one of the TEDx Birmingham's organizers just happens to also be this year's 2016 TED Prize Winner, Sarah Parcak. The UAB space archeologist will get $1 million to invest in her idea which will be revealed at TED2016. Congratulations Sarah!


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