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What online Graphic Design courses would you recommend? (Preferably free)

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sa_ill

Contributor
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Feb 10, 2020
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I want to learn Graphic Designing to create my company's assets, like product pictures for Amazon, Social Media posts, product packaging.
I dont want to outsource because it will cost me money which my bootstrapped business lacks.

Any recommendations for Graphic Designing courses I can study to allow me to achieve my goals? YouTube channels? I prefer free because I am broke, but if there's a great paid course which provides great value, I wouldn't mind dishing out a few bucks.
 
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nickgraham1234

Contributor
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Apr 16, 2019
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California
I want to learn Graphic Designing to create my company's assets, like product pictures for Amazon, Social Media posts, product packaging.
I dont want to outsource because it will cost me money which my bootstrapped business lacks.

Any recommendations for Graphic Designing courses I can study to allow me to achieve my goals? YouTube channels? I prefer free because I am broke, but if there's a great paid course which provides great value, I wouldn't mind dishing out a few bucks.
I have heard good things about the 'Illustrator Masterclass' on Udemy. Its only 20 bucks. Right now iI am taking a graphic arts class online through my local community college. Its really just taught out of the book we have- 'Adobe Illustrator Classroom in a Book' I would take a basic online course first, dial in all the basics, then learn advanced techniques from you tube.

Edit: I forgot illustrator is pretty expensive if you don't have Adobe Creative Cloud. I would also recommend Canva for easy logo design, posters, banners etc.
 

enri

New Contributor
May 4, 2019
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4
Lynda offers a 30 day free trial. There's a 22 hour "Become a Graphic Designer" learning path. Would also reccomend watching everything by Sean Adams, John McWade, Ina Saltz. If you're from US, you might even get to use Lynda for free with a library card.

Overall when learning graphic design, the focus should be on 3 main skills - typography, layout, color. Color is the easiest. You could spend a whole day watching "color theory" related videos on youtube, and at the end of the day you pretty much know all the basics.

For any inspiration, check out top rated works on Behance.

When it comes to product packaging design specifically. Then for that you do need a designer. Print production is not really something that can be learned by just taking courses, unless you're willing to spend months on trial and error of making your local print shop go crazy. Which is a lot of time and money spent (not to mention the probable cost of a new monitor and a home printer).
If you want the cheapest option, befriend a fresh graphic design graduate who has at least some print production experience. Someone who wants to fill his/her portfolio with real life examples. I would stay away from cheap Upwork "professionals", as their skills are limited to software only, no matter how shiny something looks.
 

sa_ill

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Feb 10, 2020
41
27
Edit: I forgot illustrator is pretty expensive if you don't have Adobe Creative Cloud. I would also recommend Canva for easy logo design, posters, banners etc.

I did try out Canva. I like the way it works, but it isn't something I would use in the long term. Also, in Canva one has to pay for literally every asset they use.

I did check out the Illustrator Masterclass and it looks interesting. I am adding to my list, out of which I will shortlist the one which suits me the most. Thanks!
 

BrianLateStart

Bronze Contributor
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Jun 11, 2019
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Horseheads, NY
I've been a longtime user of Photoshop, but quit using it when it became subscription. I had a side photography business at the time and free alternatives like Photopea and Photoscape do everything I need.

What I have a hard time with is vector graphics which I think is much better for creating logos/graphics. I've been using a free program, Inkscape. Made my own logo with it. As far as learning graphic design, I can't really help you there. I followed some Inkscape tutorials, but I have very simple needs for it.
 

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