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Greeting cards - InDesign or Illustrator?

New Here ,
Nov 11, 2020

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Hey guys,
I'm in the baby steps of creating a business with a business partner. They enjoy artsy types of things, and I'm an SEO professional, who also loves to write software. So we thought, let's design, print & sell greetings cards! 

My business partner has no experience with any Adobe software and needs to go on a few courses to learn the basics. Initially, I thought they would need to learn Illustrator, but after some research, it seems InDesign might also be a good shout. 

Obviously, in time, experience in both will be possible, however, which would be better to start with to enable them to design relatively basic designs for our greeting cards as quickly as possible?

Thanks in advance!

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Greeting cards - InDesign or Illustrator?

New Here ,
Nov 11, 2020

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Hey guys,
I'm in the baby steps of creating a business with a business partner. They enjoy artsy types of things, and I'm an SEO professional, who also loves to write software. So we thought, let's design, print & sell greetings cards! 

My business partner has no experience with any Adobe software and needs to go on a few courses to learn the basics. Initially, I thought they would need to learn Illustrator, but after some research, it seems InDesign might also be a good shout. 

Obviously, in time, experience in both will be possible, however, which would be better to start with to enable them to design relatively basic designs for our greeting cards as quickly as possible?

Thanks in advance!

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Nov 11, 2020 0
Adobe Employee ,
Nov 11, 2020

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Either Illustrator or InDesign should meet your needs.

 

Illustrator definitely has the edge if you need to design highly-complex vector objects. InDesign has the edge for multipage documents with articles flowing between frames and pages as well as for dealing with ICC color management and text.

 

Personallly, I use InDesign for most of my work and when I need some artwork that Illustrator is better at, I create an modify such artwork in Illustrator, save a copy as PDF/X-4 in Illustrator, and place that PDF/X-4 into InDesign.

 

Note that if you license the Creative Cloud, both InDesign and Illustrator are included as is Photoshop (which you need to edit any raster images on those greeting cards) and Acrobat Pro DC which you really need as part of your PDF print publishing workflow (hint: you don't send InDesign or Illustrator files to whoever will print your greeting cards; you send press-ready PDF/X-4 files!).

 

PS:  Both InDesign and Illustrator have fairly steep learning curves. Investment in training in full and proper use of any Adobe software is essential and rewarded later in terms of higher quality and more reliable output!

 

- Dov Isaacs, Principal Scientist, Adobe

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Nov 11, 2020 1
Adobe Community Professional ,
Nov 11, 2020

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You are on the InDesign forum, so you are likely to get a lot of InDesign!, but I'd use Illustrator for greeting cards, personally. They are relatively simple—so well suited to an Illustrator layout. If you are using line art on the front, you'd be making that in Illustrator, anyway. And you can place images from Photoshop onto your Illustrator artboards, as well.

 

~Barb 

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Nov 11, 2020 1
Adobe Community Professional ,
Nov 11, 2020

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I would also vote for Illustrator. Illustrator comes with some nice borders and symbols that could be useful for your greeting cards.

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Nov 11, 2020 0
Conrad C LATEST
Adobe Community Professional ,
Nov 11, 2020

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The software you want to use hinges largely on how you would like to make the cards, what kind of artists you are, what skills you want to use:

 

  • Do you like creating pictures that look like paintings, or combining photos and text like in a movie poster? Then you could make your cards in Photoshop. 
  • Do you like creating modern-style graphic art, drawing cartoon-like characters or subjects that tend to have distinct shapes and hard edges, or working with patterns and interesting line styles? Then Adobe Illustrator might be best. 
  • Do you expect to create the cards by combining clip art or stock photos, maybe because you’re more into collaging rather than painting or drawing by hand? Or you want to make a template so that it’s easy to create different cards based on the same design, by changing a photo or other picture, and changing the text? Then InDesign could be the one to use. 

 

I’ve created greeting cards in all three of those applications at one time or another. All of them let you mix different kinds of imported art, create high-quality typography; structure your design with layers; combine layers by using opacity, masks, and blending modes; and export a press-ready PDF file to send to the company printing the cards. The differences between the three come down to what they focus on, which is what that list is about. Photoshop and Illustrator are great if you are skilled in painting or drawing your own art by hand, InDesign is more about bringing together typography, photos, and art from different sources into a unified layout.

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