Presentation Inspiration: 3 Power Tips for Selecting Images

February 5th, 2013 by

You know that Haiku Deck puts millions of beautiful, free Creative Commons licensed images at your fingertips to grab your audience’s attention and bring your words to life. Our built-in keyword search makes the searching part easy, but selecting the perfect one can take a little creativity (and sometimes patience, grasshopper). If you need a little presentation inspiration, these power tips will help you pick images like a pro.

Keyword Search Tips

  1. Don’t limit yourself to literal: There’s no need to get stuck on a specific search word or phrase—try zooming out and exploring different angles in to your topic. For example, if you’re making a “Summer Road Trip” Haiku Deck, try evocative phrases like “highway” or “scenic route” if  ”summer vacation” or “road trip” isn’t doing the trick.
  2. Go abstract: Some text is just tough to illustrate visually. Abstract images are a great way to add some aesthetic mojo to your slide without distracting your audience from its message. Try searching for “light” and “pattern,” for example.

    Presentation Inspiration: Using abstract images in a Haiku Deck

    Haiku Deck for iPad: Using abstract images

  3. Explore emotional triggers: Sometimes you’re trying to illustrate a feeling, like fear, joy, or unbearable itchiness. Instead of searching for the emotions themselves, try thinking of what would invoke that feeling, whether it’s extreme heights, tasty pastries, or wool sweaters.

Dealing with Dead Ends

If you hit a dead end with your image searching, try a different tack and keep exploring! When we’re creative with our keywords, and willing to go beyond the first few image results, we often get inspired by a new, unexpected creative direction. (We’ve also been known to get “inspired” by afternoon cappuccinos when we’re supposed to be finishing the press kit for our upcoming new version, but that’s a different story.) Here’s a Haiku Deck we created for Nolan Haims that was particularly fun to find images for:


Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that’s simple, beautiful and fun.

More Presentation Inspiration

For more creative image ideas and presentation inspiration, be sure to browse our Featured Gallery and Popular Gallery. (If you’re using Haiku Deck for iPad, you can also do this right from the app.) If you have a question about image searching or a tip of your own, let us know! And if you have a Haiku Deck with inspired imagery, send a link to gallery@haikudeck.com (or tweet it using the hashtag #hdgallery).

  • Paul Dandurand

    Will you allow users to upload their own files? I have screenshots of my app that I would like to turn into a slide deck. Thanks.

  • Adam

    Hi Paul,

    We already DO! Look for the camera icon in the screen shot above… Tap that to access photos or screen shots from your local ipad or popular photo sharing services like DropBox, Instagram, Facebook, etc.

  • Myrna

    Every time I want to use my own photos, the resolution is so inferior to the stock photos that I cannot incorporate my actual examples. Suggestions?

    • Haiku Deck

      Hi Myrna,
      I’m sorry to hear that your photos aren’t looking as high-res as hoped. 1124×768 are the dimensions for images that should look best on the iPad. Below that, the smaller your images’ dimensions, the lower the resolution will look.

      If your images are of those dimensions or higher, drop us a line by clicking the “Support” link at the bottom of haikudeck.com and let us know so we can help you out further with getting your pictures looking great.