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My Advice for Learning Graphic Design: Part 1

Alright in my last design centered post I had shown a little pictorial of how I designed my Beetlejuice Halloween stickers, but it has come to my attention that I may end up having readers who are interested in graphic design but do not know where to begin. So to help those readers I am going to do a two part series that has my advice for learning graphic design. This series will be having one section (this one) that has some links and images that have helped me with learning design principles and the other section (the next one ) will have a YouTube video where I show y’all what each tool is used for and teach you how to do a cute little design.

Photo Credit: Aleks Dorohovich via Unsplash

First things first please keep in mind that I am a self taught and my college education is actually in creative writing and business communications not graphic design so take this advice with a grain of salt. graphic design in a classroom and the kind of design I do for work are not exactly the same. With that said I do use professional resources to learn what i have learned so far and will continue to learn in the future.

My first resource for learning design principles is Satori Graphics on YouTube. He is super smart and his videos are extremely easy to follow even though he covers a lot of information in them. Any time I need to know about something related to graphic design I search through his channel first. He also does a lot of videos that give out FREE resources to his viewers. If you are wanting to get started in graphic design I highly suggest checking his channel out!

Photo Credit: Setyaki Irham via Unsplash

The next resource I have been using a lot lately to inspire my designs is The Brand Gap by Marty Neumeier. This book is super popular in the graphic design community and for good reason. It covers A LOT but in a way that is easy to understand and remember. If you are interested in this book I bought a physical copy off of Amazon.

Photo Credit: Christian Wiediger via Unsplash

Those are my top 3 but here are some more that I feel are worth mentioning. the first is a great resource that I use pretty often is Yes I’m A Designer on YouTube. They have some great basic videos for total beginners I suggest starting with the playlist that I have linked. The next honorable mention is Design Made Simple and Logos By Nick. These are two channels by the same person and they teach you a little bit about design but the main focus of each channel is how to use different design platforms. Design Made Simple is more for learning Adobe design programs and Logos By Nick are more for learning free design programs like Inkscape and Gimp. I actually started out learning logo design by watching Logos By Nick and using Inkscape, which is a free open source design platform that is perfect if you are not ready for Adobe subscription expenses. The last honorable mention is The Futur. This one has helped me a ton with the business side of graphic design and going from minimum of $15 a logo to a minimum of $75 a logo. Obviously I need to up my prices still to be in market properly but I’m waiting till after I’m done with school to do so.

Photo Credit: Edho Pratama via Unsplash

But I digress, the point is these different sources are a wealth of information and a great start for learning how to do graphic design. Some other tips I have are to start off learning with Canva, Inkscape, and Gimp (if you can stand Gimp’s UI). These different programs are great for practicing and getting the hang of using design principles and different tools that are often used in Adobe products as well. I personally learned how to use the pen tool and actually do graphic design on Inkscape and have learned a lot about spacing while using Canva. Canva is also great if you ever want to turn some of your designs into physical products like t-shirts or business cards.

Stay tuned for my next post which will be part two where I teach y’all how to design your own ghost stickers. The next part will also be on my YouTube channel, in it I will show y’all how to make the ghost stickers with a couple of methods, including a drawing tablet like the one pictured above.

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