The Power of Art to Influence!

TEDx talk - “The Power of Art to Influence”

Only a month or so ago I was lucky enough to achieve a goal that was so out there I never considered it beyond my wildest dreams let alone ever thought it would happen.

Have you ever heard of TED talks? TED is one of the biggest keynote presentation events which has now spread around the world via the TEDx platform. With a Youtube following in excess of 15,000,000 TEDx presentations reach a global audience like no other.

I have been a huge fan for many years and watch them almost daily as a source of learning and inspiration.


I would often wonder if maybe one day I would have something important to say that might led to an opportunity to present at such a prestigious event.

That opportunity presented itself to Paul Hoelen and Myself just a couple of months ago via the Black and Blue, Coal or Coral Photographic Project by The Light Collective, which I am a part of.

Black and Blue is an artistic and symbolic exploration of the modern relationship between the extraction and consumption of old world resources (fossil fuels) and the well-being of one of our world’s great natural ecosystems. 

One of my greatest fears has always been public speaking and the thought of talking to a live audience of 200+, live streamed to potentially several million, not to mention the 15,000,000 YouTube followers with only 2 weeks to prepare our talk, left me freaked out.


The easiest choice was to say, NO, there were many excuses that I could live comfortably with, however, this was not about me, I felt we had to tell this story for the sake of the Great Barrier reef and the future I was leaving for my 4.5 year old little boy.

Sure, it wouldn't be easy, my anxiety would be at a new level, I was scared and uncomfortable, however, the thought of doing nothing at this important moment was a decision I could not live with.

When my boy asks me in 20 years if I tried to help preserve our natural wonders or stood by and did nothing, I can point proudly to this moment when I faced my greatest fear to stand up for the future I believe in.