What They Don't Teach You in Design School

This is the first in a series of brief posts about the transition from graphic design student into a professional design employee. I wish they had taught us these important and curious facts about what to expect post-college as graphic designer. These lessons apply to InHouse, Agency, Freelance and any other graphic design careers in between.

Microsoft Office.

Yep, I said it. And I MEAN it. You will be working in Microsoft Office a lot. They really should teach designers how to use this ridiculously clunky program. Your clients will make a project request and you need to be prepared to caress, maneuver and when applicable want to hurl your keyboard at the monitor.

As a Graphic Designer you will be asked to create word templates, headers, footers, letterhead, text boxes, calendars, Powerpoint templates/headers/pages/layout (perhaps you will even experience the joy of laying out over 100 slides). Exporting information from Excel into InDesign. There is a plethora of nonsense that involves using the dreaded "Office".

No one tells you this, but all designers secretly, are just as frustrated as you are.

Here's a tip for importing images (i.e. header + copy or some sort of non-editable layout or background into Word)

1. Create the layout in InDesign
2. Save as an .eps
3. Open in Illustrator
4. Save as a TIFF
5. Place the TIFF in to the Word document
6. Size and place as needed (making sure to adjust layout/size accordingly)

*It took me about an hour of trial and error to get a clear/decent resolution from a Mac (InDesign) to a PC (word document). You cannot skip to just saving as a TIFF from InDesign/Photoshop, for some reason the resolution is not as crisp. So all six time consuming steps are necessary.