Converting good ideas to good results requires useful tools and the skills to use them. Once the basic principles of poster design have been learned, it helps to acquire a basic understanding of two tools for making a poster: an image editor and a drawing program. Adobe Photoshop (for images) and Adobe Illustrator (for drawing) are popular examples of each type. This tutorial uses open sources (and therefore free to own) cognates, GIMP and Inkscape, because everyone can therefore download and use these software packages. The workshop's content can be applied to Illustrator and Photoshop, but the instruction is specific to the open source tools.
Prior attendance at Dr. Hamner's Data Visualization and Poster Design Lecture will be very helpful but is not required.
The workshop takes two hours to complete. In that time, the instructor introduces four topics, enabling users to make a poster without resorting to Microsoft PowerPoint:
- A short lecture outlining the fundamentals of computer graphics
- Image editing with GIMP
- Drawing with Inkscape
- Creating a poster in Inkscape
It is recommended that attendees download both GIMP and Inkscape software to a personal desktop or laptop and explore the user interfaces and functionality before this hands-on workshop. Even a modest familiarity with the software will be helpful.
About the Instructor:
Dr. Jesse Hamner is the Director of Library Research and Assessment at the UNT Libraries and Adjunct Faculty in the UNT Political Science Department.