I began my career many years ago in the field of Graphic Arts in which I was portrayed by those around me as somewhat of a sorcerer’s apprentice. Using some form of “wizardry trickery” it seemed, I transformed my creative thoughts and ideas into the pages of magazines and onto brochures and record sleeves. Nobody outside of my profession understood how I did my job. I thought of myself a magician of sorts.
Winter 1990. I recall being summoned by my boss at the time to a attend a training course on how to operate this contraption he had invested in that was going to ‘revolutionize’ my job. Behold! Apple Computer’s IIci. It came well equipped with a Syquest drive and a device called Scanman. Now, I was familiar with our service bureau at the time having these monolithic desks with built-in typewriters that decoded my typographic instructions and a few hours later, spat out what I needed for paste-up, but this was the beginning of the end of the world as I knew it. My point of all this reminiscing is that up until then you HAD to be a graphic designer to produce graphic design.
Present day. EVERYONE AND THEIR MOTHER IS A GRAPHIC DESIGNER. With the onset of all this wonderful technology and the prevelance of graphics software, digital cameras, the Internet, etc, etc, we all know a self-proclaimed designer. A fair portion of our customer base, besides graphics professionals, are small business owners and in-house marketing personnel using Microsoft Office software and HP desktop printers taking on the role of the do-it-yourself ad agency. Well if you’re going to do it, then do it right! Microsoft has a great resource for all you DIY’ers on their Office Online website with a wealth of free templates that will help any hands-on novice create professional looking designs for most industries.