9 Replies
Tim Slade

Hi Mariann,

I would highly suggest slide:ology, as Phil mentioned. It's my bible and I keep it with me all the time.

I would also say, although you'll get a lot out of PPT and Storyline with their design tools; in the long run, it's really worth your time to learn Illustrator if you're truly serious about improving your graphic design skills. Illustrator has a lot of the same basic design tools that you'd use in PPT or Storyline - so the learning curve isn't that bad. Plus, there's tons of free resources online to help you learn. Just a suggestions.

Best of luck!

Holly MacDonald

I had this link squirreled away for a "rainy" day...perhaps it'll have some inspiration for you:

http://99designs.com/designer-blog/2013/04/02/online-graphic-design-courses/. I also like Connie Malamed's book Visual Language for Designers.

I also think it would be a good business opportunity for someone in the community to come up with some tutorials on basics for e-learning, including beginner graphic design! Maybe using an Articulate tool...just sayin.

Hope that helps


Jerson  Campos

I would stay away from courses that teach a specific tool. Try to look for courses/books that teach the fundamental such as good composition, color theory, visual hierarchy. Since I usually apply what I learn from web design to my slides some knowledge on UI design would also be helpful. You may not become an expert, but at least you would be able to speak the same language as your graphic designer. 

Steve Flowers

For a broad overview of principles of design and a definition of design concepts, I really like this book for the price:

The before and after books are also pretty helpful in seeing the nuances between something that's not designed or sloppily designed and something that's designed with purpose and principle:

One of the things I wished more graphic arts folks did is study the why behind the creation of a visual or other media element. Too often, things boil down to "make it pretty" and while this is a fantastic quality to have, if the graphic, media, or interface doesn't function... it's sort of a waste of time. These books help with that a bit:

There are LOTS of fantastic references out there. Visual design clarifies and explains, makes it easier to make decisions, adds aesthetic characteristics that can make boost trust and pleasure in an experience. For the price, you might enjoy taking a few classes with Skillshare. These usually provide hands-on challenges and feedback. I found Dan Roam's Napkin Academy to be a fantastic resource for selecting what to use when. Good luck and have fun

Sheila Bulthuis

Great resources listed in this thread.  +1 for The Non-Designer's Design Book and The Back of the Napkin, which were the first two books I got on design and which continue to help me (a decidedly non-artistic, no-design-background person) understand the basic principles.

I'm adding slide:ology and Steve's suggestions to my wish list!