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confused newbie

Discussion in 'Graphic Design Forum:' started by MAKADON, May 9, 2010.


    MAKADON New Member

    id say im an entry level person in to graphic design as i only got into it last year. completely different to my degree.

    i love using photoshop and use it to design posters (A5 size) BUT hate using illustrator and in-design!

    So would photoshop be sufficient enough for designing posters, or do i have to use illustrator and in-design?
  2. NeedForBleed

    NeedForBleed Member

    In theory, you could get away with just photoshop. But in reality, you'll need to learn both Illustrator and InDesign, as they're actually key in this industry. Many printers will ask for either an InDesign file or Illustrator (if it's not quark). Some will say a TIFF will suffice, but you're limiting yourself by purely using photoshop. If ever you do need to increase the size of your posters from A5, things could get a little messy unless it was done in Illustrator. And then there are colour matters which just aren't worth the hassle in photoshop. The filesize will be smaller with Illustrator made files too.

    I was in a similar situation too, my degree wasn't graphics based, and I only knew photoshop. But sooner or later, you'll need to learn the others, and it's only because I didn't appreciate the true power of vector based graphics, that I refused to learn. Now I only design in Illustrator and use photoshop for cropping images and altering elements in photos.

    If you feel a little lost in Illustrator and InDesign at the moment, I would suggest getting some tutorials from google and generally play about with the tools. Give it a while though, persevere, and you'll be wondering what all the fuss was about.
  3. bigdave

    bigdave Moderator Staff Member

    Rule of thumb: Photoshop for photos, Illustrator for illustrating and InDesign for wacking the whole shabang together! I know its a bit of a twat to learn illustrator but it opens up a whole new world.

    MAKADON New Member

    Btw, i have only doe posters for the web, as its my online portfolio and have no idea what things to look out or when and if it goes to print apart from using cmyk and bleeds. i wish there was an easy way to learn about this step by step vid tutorial, rather than reading.

    yeh i knew what the programs were for, but thought using only photoshop, there could be an easy way out lol

    could i still get away with doing my posters in photoshop even though are somewhat simple, like these: Blue Sky Church Poster Template | Flyer Templates

    and not complex like the movie posters u see on billboards.

    thks for ur input
  5. Katedesign

    Katedesign Well-Known Member

    I concur with bigdave - learn the programmes - does some good video tutorials. Other reasons are that you will be easily able to make changes, scale artwork, use pantones, smaller file sizes and more. Printers generally prefer pdfs nowadays btw.

    MAKADON New Member

    Wow, inDesign doesn't seem that hard, BUT Nigel French goes turbo mode about lines, margins, gutter etc and his accent puts me of lol. SO CONFUSING! Im British, but an American accent would be better in explaining this lol like Deke McClelland, his videos are so easy to understand.

    Correct me if im wrong, but:
    Photoshop - pics
    Indesign - Text/Layout
    Illustrator - Drawing

    1 - So, indesign seems same as photoshop, by which i mean, i can lay out all the text and image with ease, but when i zoom in, it pixelates, but not in illustrator (i knw the reason why, but why do ppl still insist on using indesign to design posters). im still finding my feet, but as for now im using indesign. So would it b best to make the poster in indesign eg insert pics and text and then export to photoshop to do outer glow, blend modes etc?

    2 - on my background layer,i have inserted 3 pics in indesign and i want to blend all of them together seamlessly to make it look like one background. How would i blend 3 pics in a background when i export from indesign?

    3 - Btw is it ok to not use illustator for designing posters/business cards, as im NOT drawing anything. I am ONLY placing a background, with text on top and adding some layers styles in photoshop?

    thnks guys!!!!!!!!!!!
  7. Logopro

    Logopro Member

    It's not really ok.

    You see, as soon as you want to make anything bigger than it was when you designed it your making it pixelate and distort.
    The point of Illustrator is that, with vectors, there is no knock in quality when resizing.

    If you feel that you'll NEVER need to resize anything (and how can you be totally sure what your clients might want it for after the initial job?) then you could probably feel quite safe in using just photoshop - otherwise, I think you'll struggle as soon as somebody needs to put your poster on a billboard :icon_tongue_smilie:
  8. bigdave

    bigdave Moderator Staff Member

    Anything that needs blending modes should be done BEFORE working InDesign. if its text that needs working on and you cant get the effect right in InDesign, produce the text at the correct size and resolution in photoshop and save it as a .TIFF or .EPS then import it into InDesign as an image.

    Use photoshop! you can blend the images in InDesign but its easier and will look better done in PS!

    Photoshop does bad things to text! If you want a bit of an experiment, paste a picture into photoshop and type some wording over the top then save it as a tiff. open a new file in InDesign, and do exactly the same. same pic same size same font same words. Place the TIFF you made in photoshop onto the InDesign document so youve got both on one page and print it.

    Photoshop will have converted the stroke of the text into an image which visibly reduces the printed quality.

    thnks guys!!!!!!!!!!![/QUOTE]
  9. bigdave

    bigdave Moderator Staff Member

    as an example of the differences between text produced in photoshop and the text produced in indesign, I've done that little experiment for you:
  10. LovesPrint

    LovesPrint Member

    Coz it's a page layout programme and you are laying out a page.
  11. AppletreePrint

    AppletreePrint New Member

    Learn the programs


    I'd really suggest learning Illustrator, keep using it until it becomes as familular as photoshop is to you. Once you master the basics of illustrator you will wonder why you never used it before. I always try and learn a new illustrator tool or design method every now and again to expand my knowledge of what is possible using illustrator.

    Using vector graphics will be in my opinion essential for a poster designer, especially when creating a3 to a0 poster sizes, this will ensure the highest quality print of your finsihed design.

    Don't get me wrong I love photoshop and use it alot, however once you learn how both programs work you will see how they can both compliment each other.
  12. Katedesign

    Katedesign Well-Known Member

    You really should learn Illustrator. . and you're right. . .
    Illustrator for Drawings/logos so that they can be scaled
    Photoshop for Photos
    Indesign or Quark for Page layout

    It's all just a question of practice!
  13. SparkCreative

    SparkCreative Member

    lol beat me to it. It's because it's industry standard. If you're laying out anything more than a poster, ie anything with more than one page, printers will curse you to high heaven if you start giving them Illustrator files. And even more if you start giving them Photoshop files.

    You say you're finding this all hard to learn - well that's why most of us spent at least three yeas in College before we even contemplated doing this as a job. Frankly, I find it a little insulting when people go "Oh I did something completely different as a degree, but I fancy doing graphic design. Why? Because you think it's easy and doesn't take any training?!


    MAKADON New Member

    thanks 'bigdave', nice advice! and as for the pic,in normal mode when i zoom in in-design, it pixelates the pic, but i saw a vid tutorial about how u can change a setting to see the images in crisp detail when zoomed in in-design. kool!

    btw, i never use vectors. all my posters have been made using 300dpi images and simple text.

    So to summerise to design posters:
    1 - Do my text and image blending mode effects in photoshop and save them as .tiff
    2 - open indesign and add bleeds, margins etc
    3 - import image and text to indesign
    4 - add additional text eg time, date, location of event in indesign

    supposing i knw how to create my file to print and have my cmyk turned on. what would be the next step/s after step 4? as i have read in some places, it says you should make all text as outlines, where others have falied to mention this. so im kinda confused here. Anything else i have missed out?

    thnks all for ur input!
  15. bigdave

    bigdave Moderator Staff Member

    the dodgy looking pictures in InDesign are because, to save memory InDesign only places a low res image into the document. If you go to View > Display Performance it gives you the options to adjust how the image displays. But remember, however it displays, isnt a true reflection of the actual image quality.
  16. LovesPrint

    LovesPrint Member

    You can outline text if you want to, but save it as a copy and keep an editable copy for you just in case. At our printers we would request that you create a PDF compliant with X1a 2001 or X4 2008 (with crop marks and bleed turned on) which ensures all your fonts are embedded so there's no need to outline. Alternatively, you could package up your InDesign file which would make sure all relevant fonts and links are there and send that folder to us.

    MAKADON New Member

    Thnks for all ur input. BUT are the 4 steps i mentioned above correct and in the right order? and is there anything else i need to do to prepare my work for print? thnks
  18. bigdave

    bigdave Moderator Staff Member

    That seems to be ok. dont forget that from InDesign, you can jump to and from photoshop & illustrator to edit images already placed into the InDesign document so if you decide to change anything its just a quick click away.

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