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Design Basics

Basics for creating better designs and incorporating improved graphics into your work.

Design Tools

Consider the Need and the Tools

  • Logo - use a vector-based design program (such as Adobe Illustrator or Inkscape) to combine lines, shapes, and typography in inventive ways.
  • Poster - Use a publishing-oriented program (such as Canva, Adobe Illustrator, Snappa, or LucidPress) to create large, colorful, and/or graphically interesting content.
    • You can also use these programs to make your conference posters stand out from the stock posters you see.
  • Presentation - Use a slide-oriented program (such as Power Point, Emaze, or Canva) to create and present.
    • Prezi gained momentum as an alternative, but poses substantial issues for accessibility and tends to make viewers dizzy.
  • Flyer - Use a design program (such as Canva, Adobe illustrator , Inkscape or Canva) that will help you create the right-sized, printable media to promote your event, service, program, etc.
  • Brochure - Use a publishing-oriented program (such as Canva, Adobe InDesign, Publisher, or Canva) to guarantee that you have the correct layout for printing, etc.
  • Computer Graphic - use a vector-based design program (such as adobe illustrator, inkscape, canva, or gimp) to create something using a blend of elements from different sources (including stock images, shapes, typography, etc) to create a visually interesting item for on-screen display.
  • Social Media Post - use a design-based program (Such as Adobe Illustrator, Inkscape, Canva, Gimp, Photoshop, Lucidpress, or Scribus) to create specifically-sized images that will work well as headers, post-sizes, profile images, etc. to promote specific events, services, programs, etc.
  • Enhanced Photograph - Use a photo-specific program (such as Adobe Photoshop or Gimp) to adjust, crop, and apply effects or doctor a photograph as needed.