Renowned New Mexico artist Georgia O’Keeffe began her career in New York City. She painted the Ritz Tower soon after it opened in 1927. But her painting wasn’t an exercise in photographic realism. She said, “One can’t paint New York as it is, rather how it is felt.” To that end, O’Keefe accentuated the halo of the streetlamp and made the tower abstract and dynamic.
Often artists make a subject more dramatic and interesting via their impression of it. In fact, we rode on horseback past many of O’Keeffe’s arroyos and mesas, and her paintings are much more dramatic and affecting than the real thing.
Consider every piece of content you present the same way. Yes, it may be technically accurate, but it can be more memorable if you add your impression, or the way it makes you
feel. Consequently, that emotion will be transferred to your audience. Like visitors to Santa Fe’s O’Keeffe Museum, as they look at a painting from different angles, they will savor the feelings it evokes. There’s nothing better for your audience to filter your presentation through their emotions. Like experiencing a great painting, they will want to linger.