The world is turning more visual everyday. People just don’t have the time to read, but an image says it all in only a glance.
With all the big players have onboard graphic designers, and creating high quality graphics and using impressive photography, how can you keep up just by yourself?
With no time, design skills, or money to keep paying a designer, it can be tough.
BUT have no fear atomic is here to help. Here’s the easiest, cheapest and best ways to get high quality imagery without being a designer, on budget, and quickly.
What to Design in?
Firstly, if you had the time and budget, we would suggest purchasing Adobe Illustrator/Photoshop, and getting some training on it. However this is not going to be cheap or quick. Don’t worry though we have some alternatives where you can do just as good.
Secondly, at all cost AVOID designing in Microsoft Paint or Microsoft Word.
Ok so here are the alternatives that work pretty well…
A free photoshop alternative, that’s actually really good, check it out here.
Powerpoint is ‘OK’ for doing simple graphics that are mainly text based. You can set your canvas size to whatever size you like, and you can save the slides as images (.PNG or .JPG).
Another player that has recently came into the market is a website called ‘Canva‘, which allows you to create designs online for free, using their range of templates (you can upgrade to access more tools). This is definitely worth checking out, easy to use and you can create some great pieces of graphics on there. Their templates are great for making sure you are making the design is the right dimensions for things like Facebook timeline photos or Twitter headers and so on.
ACTION: Choose a tool to design in and get really good at designing in it. The more practice, the better you’ll get.
Sometimes, if you don’t have time, or you are working on something important where the graphics matters, it is definitely worth spending a few quid on a good graphic designer. Here’s an article on knowing when to spend money on graphic design and when not to.
Many experts say outsource your graphic design to a cheap source such as oDesk or Fiverr, where you can hire people from around the world for pennies to create graphics for you. The problem is that by the time you have made an account, faffed on with your brief, sifted through hundreds of responses, and gone through all the initials drafts and tweaks – it would just be easier to make it yourself would it not for a small job. And for a big job or something important, then it’s probably worth getting it designed by a professional designer. Here’s ‘10 Reasons why you Need Good Graphic Design in your Life!‘
If you are struggling with designing graphics, or don’t feel confident enough to do it, here an article on ‘How to FAKE being a designer.’
Where to get good photos
The copyright world of photography can be a bit of a minefield, and in most cases it is just easier to pay for a few photo’s here and there. Be very careful if you are taking photos from places like Google or Flickr – you could get fined. We know people who have been fined £900 for using a photo with the correct rights.
Dollar Photo Club is very good and one of the cheapest for stock photo’s at only $10/month for 10 photo’s with any extra at $1 more. Photo’s not used in one month roll on to the next month which is good.
Shutterstock has the largest range of photo’s but is very expensive, around £35 for 5! if you are creating a Facebook ad however you can click ‘Browse library’ and use Shutterstock photos for free.
Here are three totally free photo sites where there is no copyright issues at all, you don’t have to credit, and you don’t have to pay for them either. We love these sites.. Albumarium, Gratisography and Unsplash.