Part 2: Becoming a Graphic Designer
So I hope you found Inkscape and Nick Saporito useful to start your graphic career. I think I spent at least a month, or maybe more, trying to work out the basics of the program and get to a stage where I was able to use it effectively. Again I had no previous experience with these kind of programs. If you have some experience or know your way around a computer I’m sure you could do it in a few weeks.
Once I felt I had a grasp for Inkscape I began to realize that it lacked many of the more advanced features of Adobe Illustrator which I needed to use if I was going to progress in a very competitive industry. The obvious choice was to look into the Adobe Creative Cloud series. I was more interested in just using illustrator as that was my initial need. The problem is that Adobe does not sell you the program outright but gives you access via monthly payments or annual subscriptions. The real downfall for me was how they have created their packages. If you want to use a single program you basically pay 2/3 of the price of getting the entire package containing all the programs.
I was simply not ready to go all in on all the programs when I had only recently started to use Inkscape. So I found a way to get illustrator through a friend’s subscription who was currently not using it. This was a massive break for me. I had time to get to grips with the program without having to put in any initial investment. You can get a 7 day trail version to check the program out even without a subscription.
I now needed to find a way of teaching myself as I still was not yet ready to pay for an online course when I didn’t know the basics of the program. The Adobe site offers many tutorial videos but I was simply blown away by Tastytuts youtube channel created by Gareth David. He had a beginner’s course for Adobe Illustrator for free. A more valued resource I could not find. Thanks to this channel I slowly began to get to grips with Illustrator. This channel is a wealth of information! Thank you Gareth David!
Within a month or so I had got my head around the basics. I did however begin to plateau. I also did not have the time I previously had as I went back to South Africa to do some time guiding. I believe the time lost here set me back, as I was just getting into the swing of things. If you have access to Illustrator, get it as soon as you can. Don't be overwhelmed by the program. Again here it was difficult to keep striving and persevering through all the research and often by the end of the day and I hadn’t come out with much. Those hours I hope to save you here. So here are my tips for this post:
1. TastyTuts by Gareth David
2. Adobe Illustrator
Next I will reveal more channels and links that I used post TastyTuts. I still visit Gareth's channel and I think his beginners course to Graphic Design you may want to have a look at as well. It is not as easy to find valuable resources straight away.