Designing 101

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Designing 101

Hi! I'm still somewhat new here and trying to learn the site so sorry if this has been asked (I'm sure it has but I can't find anything so please delete this post and point me in the right direction if needed). Anyways I'm looking to try designing and don't know where to start. Is there a *Designing 101* area on this site? Tips for getting started? I saw mentions of a Designer Mentor program but can't tell if that exists here. Thanks for any help! smiley

There is a thread called Tutorials. There are tons of design tips in there. Papers, elements, etc. I would start looking thru there and then the rest is where your imagination takes you. Start with papers. That’s where I started. Then check out designer challenges.

Thank you, Karry!

I have all my tutorials here, which is basically everything I know. We just finished up our Designer Madness last month, which is a good way to get started. We'll be running that again in a couple months. And there's always our monthly blog train, which is a good way to get a little exposure and have some of the thought taken away since the palette is provided. I'm always happy to answer any specific questions when they come up smiley

Which program are you using, Shannon? Marisa's tutorials are great for Photoshop, but I've also managed to turn out graphics using Paintshop Pro.

Like Karry said, I'd start with papers. They are much easier to make than elements. Brushes and custom shapes help a lot with designing elements. You can Google for those.

Photoshop and thanks for the advice!

Shannon, I know I'm late to the conversation, but here are some tips that have worked for me:

Definitely start with papers - they're still my favourite thing to do! Also, when I'm making a kit or bundle, I make the papers first so that I can use them in my elements and alphas, making the whole thing coordinate.

The graphics files here are a brilliant resource -- has a LOT of paper and element templates, as well as paper textures. Marisa's tutorials will teach you how to use the templates and textures.

And I agree about starting off designing for the monthly blog trains, you will also get good feedback if you post in the forums.

[I don't know if I'm allowed to endorse other sites, so admins and mods, please feel free to delete anything not allowed.]

I love Pixabay, for photos and other CU images to use in designing. [Tip: when using Pixabay's PNG files, make sure you check to see if the original image author has extracted the item properly. Most do a good job, but some don't. The easiest way to check if there are stray pixels floating around is to apply a stroke in a contrasting colour; you will easily be able to see anything that needs to be deleted.]

I also subscribe to Creative Fabrica, which has fonts, graphics and other CU resources. They have daily freebies you can download, but if you subscribe, you get unlimited access to every item on the site.

When I'm designing, I keep a Notepad document open, so that I can note down anything I use [graphics, brushes, templates, textures, styles etc etc], which I then use as a reference for my Credits file. Make sure you pay attention to the Terms Of Use files for anything you use, so that you know that you're using the product as the original designer allows.

Don't forget about your software itself; the program's graphics, backgrounds, shapes etc are also good design tools.

But most of all, experiment, play, and simply have fun!

Thank you so much!