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How hard for a newbie to use In Design for a picture book?

Community Beginner ,
Jul 12, 2018 Jul 12, 2018

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Hi, I am working on a picture book, soon to format into files. I have no experience yet with In Design, but have been warned that it's "very difficult", but also the best. Any comments? I'm not a computer whiz but pretty good at learning.

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LEGEND ,
Jul 12, 2018 Jul 12, 2018

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Being experienced in graphic design is IMO more important than being a computer whiz. If you have a background in graphics design, then you'll go "ah this is how InDesign does that particularly perfectly normal instruction".

If you don't, you may find yourself go "what the heck is "bleed' and "spot" and contextual swash and overprint and color management and why is type measured in a 15th century unit and why can't I start a left hand page numbering with '1' and why is InDesign not telling me what all of these functions are for and how to not use it and why should I have to know all these things because in Word you don't need to know all of that at all to type just a simple text and place a picture".

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Participant ,
Jul 12, 2018 Jul 12, 2018

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Lol - I enjoyed reading that!

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Community Expert ,
Jul 12, 2018 Jul 12, 2018

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Lets take it that way:

I learned Indesign, so it cannot be that difficult.

Look for a good book (like Classroom in a Book), look for learning resources: Adobe has some tutorials, Youtube is also a source, but you need to know how to sort out the bad tutorials, and there are paid learning resources, like linkedIn Learning or similar.

ABAMBO | Hard- and Software Engineer | Photographer

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Community Expert ,
Jul 12, 2018 Jul 12, 2018

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Start with a book called InDesign Visual Quick Start

A few simples rules for beginners to make your life easier.

Don't use lots of fonts - pick one or two that work well together, and stick with various weights of those.

Everything on your page should have a Style applied. Paragraph Styles, Character Styles and Object Styles. If you do this, (and don't override the styles), you will have a more consistent-looking book, and  it will be far easier to make global changes.

If you are using an online service to print your book, pay close attention to their specifications, and make sure you understand them before you begin - this could save you a lot of reworking down the line.

InDesign CC: Visual QuickStart Guide: Sandee Cohen: 9780321929570: Amazon.com: Books

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Community Expert ,
Jul 12, 2018 Jul 12, 2018

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You might be better using a service like Blurb who offer an easy way for people to create Photobooks, with or without InDesign.

Create, Print, and Sell Professional-Quality Photo Books | Blurb

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 12, 2018 Jul 12, 2018

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thanks very much!

On Thu, Jul 12, 2018 at 9:25 AM Derek Cross <forums_noreply@adobe.com>

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Community Expert ,
Jul 12, 2018 Jul 12, 2018

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I used Blurb at the time, because it offered me the possibility to use Indesign. Very few photobook service printing companies do that. The layout in Indesign is more fkexible. The Photobookapplications are not bad, but they are not professionel enough.

ABAMBO | Hard- and Software Engineer | Photographer

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Community Expert ,
Jul 12, 2018 Jul 12, 2018

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LATA  wrote

...but have been warned that it's "very difficult", but also the best.

Hi Lata,

Is it difficult to make a quilt? Is it difficult to build a table? Is it difficult to change your oil?

Not for those who have taken the time to learn how before starting.

It's the same with InDesign. First learn how to use it, then start working on your picture book. The difference will be fun vs. frustration.

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 12, 2018 Jul 12, 2018

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Great perspective!

Sent from my iPhone

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Engaged ,
Jul 13, 2018 Jul 13, 2018

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Personally, I started off by using Photoshop, literally anything I wanted to create I’d do it in Photoshop – Magazine? Photoshop. Logo? Photoshop.

Then many years ago (Before I was a professional) I decided enough was enough, if I wanted to take this work seriously I need to learn how to use indesign and Illustrator.

Lucky for me the layout is very familiar, and I quickly learnt why there are 3 separate programs - though I never actually took a class I learnt by trial, error and youtube – when using InDesign this forum is a godsend, you should always ask yourself “Is there an easier way of doing this?” because there probably is! I would say it’s easy to learn hard to master if you’ve got some experience with Adobe software you’ll feel somewhat at home and having an understanding of graphic design will help 10x.

But, that’s what the forum is for – to support and help you. Use and abuse us, you’ll always learn something.

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 13, 2018 Jul 13, 2018

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Encouraging, thanks!

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Community Expert ,
Jul 13, 2018 Jul 13, 2018

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I would highly recommend Sandee Cohen's book: The Visual QuickStart Guide to InDesign. Unlike other books, that use project-based learning, this covers the features fully. It's also a great reference book with a good index to find what you're looking for quickly.

When I first started in InDesign (a lot of years ago), I read Sandee's book, and became an Adobe Certified Expert two months later.

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