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So, you’ve been asked to create a marketing document using Indesign, and you thought it would be just like using Word or Powerpoint, only with more images and more text columns. Or maybe you completed a one-day course and hope that putting your new Indesign skills into practice will be a walk in the park.

The truth is, although Indesign may be very user-friendly it can take a long time to fully grasp it. This means the less experienced user often requires quite a bit of help as they get going.

The graphic design team in our department receive a lot of Indesign queries from University staff. Although we’d like to be able to help each person individually, it does take time – and we hardly ever have enough of that! But although I can’t talk you through the entire program, I can share a few tips to make your first Indesign excursions a little less frustrating. Most of these resources will also be found within the Marketing and Communications website.

USE THE INTERNET

First, click on this Adobe help link and bookmark it.

Now save it as your homepage.

This resource has everything you can think of related to Indesign, laid out in a logical, easy-to-follow way. If you’ve already started using Indesign you should have a basic understanding of layers, objects, text boxes and links, so chances are you’ll know how to phrase your question to find the right answer.

If you can’t figure out what you’re looking for, but know it has something to do with, say, fonts not working, then go to this forum.

You can either start your own forum thread, or search for something similar. At the very least you will learn something new. At best, you’ll learn how to fix your problem and create a dialogue thread that will help other people solve the same problem in future.

QUICK FIXES

In addition to the two links mentioned, here is a list of resources to help you create a masterpiece of university marketing material in the smallest amount of time possible.

Trouble selecting objects on the page
Unlocking the secrets of Indesign

How do I install fonts such as Replica?
PC Users
Microsoft help
The above link will explain that you need to place the font files (.ttf, .otf or .fon) into the Fonts folder, usually found at C:\Windows\Fonts or C:\WINNT\Fonts
You can also reach it via the Start Menu > Control Panel > Appearance and Themes > Fonts.

Mac Users
If you’re on a Mac, you’ll need to put the font files into the folder /Library/Fonts (for all users),
or into /Users/Your_username/Library/Fonts (for you only).

How do I make a PDF, or print from Indesign?
It is best to make a PDF rather than printing straight from Indesign, otherwise the document might stall the printer. Click here to learn how to export to PDF and learn the different setting options

Is there a brand template for …?
The University’s Brand Style Guidelines website tells you everything you need to know about using our brand for University publications. Please ensure you are familiar with our branding guidelines before using any of the templates. Download the Brand Guidelines document (PDF) here

Once you are familiar with the branding guidelines, and have a general understanding of Indesign, the best thing to do is jump on in and start using it. Along the way you might find these other resources helpful too.

MarComms website
Most print/design/editorial resources can be found here

Brand Guidelines
This includes resources such as templates, logo requests, editorial guidelines and many more

Editorial styles
Anything you need to know about university editorial styles

Local Brand Approvers
Find out who your Local Brand Approver is

Large file transfers
Sending large files such as images via email

Common printer terminology
A-Z of common print and design terms

University ImageBank
Approved university images for use in marketing material

External image resources
If you are looking for something quite specific, you can purchase images from the following websites. Please note you need the correct license to use them.
Stock.xchng
iStockphoto
Getty Images
Corbis Images