This is me on a self-imposed crash course in Photoshop. Oh, the possibilities! Oh, the fun! Oh, the faceplants. Ctrl Z is my friend.
I’ve been teaching myself InDesign and Photoshop for no good reason except my own personal curiosity and standards. I’ve been fascinated for a long time with form and function, effectiveness of design, and elegant solutions to problems. Also, I can be particular about stuff, and learning these programs allows me express my particularness in very particular ways.
It started last winter with poster design. For example, this poster was created for a conference based on my work with the University Musical Society. When I started this job, one of my goals was to publicize our LibQual results from this year. Based on my experience, and as a way to model poster design for our students who must create one as part of their Capstone projects, I chose to create a big, conference-sized poster at the front of the library. When I sat down to make the poster in September, it turned out that I remembered almost nothing about InDesign. This was probably a good thing, as I knew that I was using it in the most amateur-ish, ugly, inexperienced way possible. Better I forgot everything. So I decided to learn how to use it for real, and let me tell you, it’s quite the process.
Luckily, I’ve been taking advantage of the subscription to Lynda that is available to me through the Northern New York Library Network. The tutorials are great and useful, but they’re more focused on the traditional uses of InDesign for books, magazines, order forms, etc. What I’m looking to do is a bit more free form. I’m finding it nearly as effective to work until I come up against a specific problem and then just Google the problem. It’s a cumbersome method, sifting through search results and cobbling together pieces and parts from tutorials to accomplish what I want to do, but it is effective in a sledgehammer-y way.
I do enjoy a challenge, even when it occasionally leaves me faceplanted in my desk at the end of the day.