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MacBook-Gal
Feb 18, 2008, 11:50 PM
What is your favorite graphic design software for Mac? I am looking for something that I can use to create note-cards, business cards, and do other graphic design type jobs with. I have been thinking about getting Quark or Indesign, but can't really decide between the two of them. Which one do you think would be better for doing these publishing jobs? Or is there some other program that would be better than them? Thanks for any opinions!:):apple:



TatsuTerror
Feb 18, 2008, 11:51 PM
For making business cards and such, I'd recommend Adobe Illustrator.

MacBook-Gal
Feb 18, 2008, 11:54 PM
I have thought about getting Illustrator, because it looks like a really cool program. How easy is it to get the text centered and sized right for a business card with it?

jerryrock
Feb 18, 2008, 11:55 PM
InDesign is the best for page layout.

klymr
Feb 18, 2008, 11:56 PM
I agree. I voted InDesign, but I agree that Illustrator would be your best bet by far. I like InDesign for bigger projects, layouts and things. For smaller projects such as you mentioned, Illustrator is the way to go.

TatsuTerror
Feb 18, 2008, 11:58 PM
I have thought about getting Illustrator, because it looks like a really cool program. How easy is it to get the text centered and sized right for a business card with it?You can center stuff easily in any good program, so I wouldn't worry about it.

InDesign is good also, though I find Illustrator to cover more areas of design. InDesign does what it should very well...it just depends on everything you plan to design. Illustrator probably will cover more for you, though.

miguel mouse!
Feb 19, 2008, 12:46 AM
adobe illustrator allows for more manipulation of your type than indesign or quark, plus with illustrator you can create graphic elements and, of course, digital illustrations for your note cards and business cards.

tothelimit
Feb 19, 2008, 01:22 AM
quark and indesign and more fit for publication layout (magazines, newsletters, calendars...) - it is where you will see the most benefit from the functionality of the programs. for what you have mentioned, you will be far better off illustrator like most here have said. vector illustration can be tricky, but if you are doing mainly type layout you will find illustrator pretty straight forward. goodluck!

smurfjammer
Feb 19, 2008, 01:25 AM
I'm a sucker for FreeHand :D

But use a combination of FreeHand, Illustrator, Photoshop & Indesign, each have their own uses....

Highlander
Feb 19, 2008, 08:29 AM
InDesign is the best... But it is even better if you use it together with Photoshop and Illustrator... ;)

ayale99
Feb 19, 2008, 09:16 AM
Illustrator. I only use Indesign for multi-page layouts.

Z.Beeblebrox
Feb 19, 2008, 09:20 AM
I voted for Quark because I consider it the true design program. Illustrator and PhotoShop are both used for creating artwork and images, but what I consider "graphic design" is the incorporating a group of those images into a layout along with text and other design elements and arranging them into a complete "design". Of course you can use the other programs to layout a piece, but that's what Quark was built for. Illustrator and PhotoShop were not built for intended use as a layout program. InDesign is ok, but Quark is my personal preference.

drawstring
Feb 19, 2008, 10:23 AM
for business cards, I would use illustrator to design/prep/adjust whatever logo and images; and then place that in InDesign to add and adjust the text etc. i much prefer InDesign's text tools.

G4DP
Feb 19, 2008, 11:11 AM
Another tale of people using the wrong package for the wrong jobs.

Photoshop - All Photographic manipulation.
Illustrator/FreeHand - Graphic Design
InDesign/Quark - DTP

If you use these packages for anything else you are using the wrong package. I don't know how many time I have come across people using PhotoShop to design complete posters. Drives me mad. I think anyone who does things like that does not belong in the design business.

IgnatiusTheKing
Feb 19, 2008, 11:17 AM
Illustrator is the best, by far, in my opinion.

InDesign isn't really "graphic design" software at all, but is fantastic for layout. I don't generally create anything in ID, but instead use Illustrator and Photoshop and then place those in InDesign.

tobefirst
Feb 19, 2008, 11:32 AM
InDesign isn't really "graphic design" software at all, but is fantastic for layout.

This graphic designer would strongly disagree with this sentiment.

IgnatiusTheKing
Feb 19, 2008, 11:47 AM
This graphic designer would strongly disagree with this sentiment.

Care to expound on that?

I use InDesign every day but rarely use anything but frames and text. I design everything in Illustrator (or occasionally Photoshop) and then place it. Do you use the Pen tool to draw in ID? I can probably count on one hand the number of times I have.

EDIT: let me also note that I love ID and am not disparaging it, just pointing out how I like to use it and am curious how others do.

klymr
Feb 19, 2008, 11:59 AM
Just because it's text doesn't mean it isn't graphic design. Graphic design is all about the visual layout of both graphics, (be it photos, illustrations, or whatever) and text. I'd almost say the more successful graphic designer knows how to work the text into their design more than how to make a picture pretty.

EDIT: And here is the definition from the beloved dictionary built into OS X:

graph•ic de•sign
noun
the art or skill of combining text and pictures in advertisements, magazines, or books.

Cromulent
Feb 19, 2008, 12:00 PM
If you use these packages for anything else you are using the wrong package. I don't know how many time I have come across people using PhotoShop to design complete posters. Drives me mad. I think anyone who does things like that does not belong in the design business.

That is just foolish thinking. It is the end product that matters, not how it was achieved.

Wee Beastie
Feb 19, 2008, 12:01 PM
Another tale of people using the wrong package for the wrong jobs.

Photoshop - All Photographic manipulation.
Illustrator/FreeHand - Graphic Design
InDesign/Quark - DTP

If you use these packages for anything else you are using the wrong package. I don't know how many time I have come across people using PhotoShop to design complete posters. Drives me mad. I think anyone who does things like that does not belong in the design business.

A multi-application approach to design works best for me (and obviously to you), but people are going to develop individual approaches that work for them. What drives me mad are snobby GD know-it-alls who think that their methods outshine everyone else's.

tobefirst
Feb 19, 2008, 12:02 PM
Care to expound on that?

I use InDesign every day but rarely use anything but frames and text. I design everything in Illustrator (or occasionally Photoshop) and then place it. Do you use the Pen tool to draw in ID? I can probably count on one hand the number of times I have.

EDIT: let me also note that I love ID and am not disparaging it, just pointing out how I like to use it and am curious how others do.
Sure. No problem. I probably should have clarified initially, anyway.

I largely take issue with the separation created by your initial statement. What, in design, is more important than "layout?" Whether that be the layout of a logo, paragraph, illustration, page, or book. If the layout software isn't "graphic design" software, then layout itself isn't "graphic design." That is what I take exception to.

tobefirst
Feb 19, 2008, 12:07 PM
That is just foolish thinking. It is the end product that matters, not how it was achieved.

I thought the same thing...until I had to edit/update a document another designer had done. There is beauty in having a document technically correct in much the same way a web designer will tell you that "code is poetry." Just because the majority of the public won't notice doesn't mean it isn't worth doing.

Father Jack
Feb 19, 2008, 12:09 PM
My preference is a mixture of Illustrator, Photoshop and Quark Xpress.

superleccy
Feb 19, 2008, 12:15 PM
Before switching, I used Corel DRAW! 6 for the PC since its release - one of the first non-Microsoft Native Windows 95 programs to be released. Once you'd applied all the patches and disabled 'multitasking', it was actually very stable - contrary to popular opinion.

I used it right up until I switched, as a hobby, and to make money on the side doing adverts for Yellow Pages and local papers.

I've still not found anything for the Mac that comes close in terms of usability and functionality (tried Linedraw, Eazydraw, Inkscape, Intaglio). I suppose Adobe CS3 is the way forwards, but I refuse to pay for something in the UK that is cheaper in the US even after you've taken taxes and air tickets into consideration.

I remain gutted about this. Go on, post a picture of a crying baby. I don't care. :mad:

SL

Z.Beeblebrox
Feb 19, 2008, 12:31 PM
Photoshop - All Photographic manipulation.
Illustrator/FreeHand - Graphic Design
InDesign/Quark - DTP


Agreed. You can open a can of beans with a hammer OR a can opener. Both will work, although one is designed specifically for the purpose and the other is a little less practical.

IgnatiusTheKing
Feb 19, 2008, 12:40 PM
Sure. No problem. I probably should have clarified initially, anyway.

I largely take issue with the separation created by your initial statement. What, in design, is more important than "layout?" Whether that be the layout of a logo, paragraph, illustration, page, or book. If the layout software isn't "graphic design" software, then layout itself isn't "graphic design." That is what I take exception to.

Fair enough. I tend to think of the creation of the artwork differently than adding text later, but that's probably just because of how I use the programs.

Whenever I have text closely integrated with graphics, I am usually using AI exclusively (or in conjunction with PS if there are images that need modification) whereas I use ID for blocks of text in books and other layouts where the text and the graphics (which may include text) are somewhat separate.

mperkins37
Feb 19, 2008, 01:02 PM
I use Illustrator, Photoshop, & Indesign.
Illustrator for Text & Typestyling, and Photoshop for effects, & Eye Candy.
It really depends on your design style.
I personally love Photoshop, & contrary to common belief it is used to great effect with design.
Many magazines are dedicated to nothing but Photoshop, and designing with it.
The more tools in your Box the more you can improvise.
Illustrator would probably suit best for most Design needs, unless you need DTP layout software. Should probably try & get a CS3 suite that suits you and get the best of all that the apps have to offer.
My 2 cents.

decksnap
Feb 19, 2008, 01:21 PM
Illustrator is the best, by far, in my opinion.

InDesign isn't really "graphic design" software at all, but is fantastic for layout. I don't generally create anything in ID, but instead use Illustrator and Photoshop and then place those in InDesign.

Yeah this graphic designer strongly disagrees with that as well.

JSchwage
Feb 19, 2008, 01:24 PM
I've been using Fireworks MX (2004) ever since I first started doing web design. I've tried using Photoshop but I've found it to be very confusing and has a high learning curve. Fireworks is so much easier to use.

decksnap
Feb 19, 2008, 01:30 PM
I've been using Fireworks MX (2004) ever since I first started doing web design. I've tried using Photoshop but I've found it to be very confusing and has a high learning curve. Fireworks is so much easier to use.

Fireworks is much more directly tuned for web design anyway. It is a far better tool for that job than Photoshop.

TatsuTerror
Feb 19, 2008, 01:36 PM
Think of each program as a tool in a toolbox. Sometimes you'll need a few to get the job done. Adobe offers different sized toolboxes to allow you to buy the one that best suits your needs. The good thing about using programs from the same suite is that they often work together more productively.

benpatient
Feb 19, 2008, 01:38 PM
I have found that with each new version of ID, I need Illustrator and PS less and less for what I do.

Really complex illustrations need Illustrator, yes. Really complex photo stuff needs photoshop, yes.

but most of the time, I just don't need to spend a lot of time in those apps.

Of course I was a big-time Quark supporter until the 6.0 debacle, and strictly ID since.

I will say that everyone telling the OP that Illustrator is better for business cards must be working with more complicated business cards than I do...

question for the OP:

Do you mean that you will be making lots of business cards with the same basic design on them (as in, cards for a single company's 100 employees), or lots of different "blanks" for various clients.

Because I have to say that dropping a spreadsheet into ID's data merge feature and having it spit out all the cards at once with formatting and everything accounted for is really a lot easier than anything you can do in illustrator.


But then I use all 3 of those apps all the time...i just spend more time in indesign actually designing.

I couldn't get by without all 3.

nfocus design
Feb 19, 2008, 02:44 PM
I count Quark and InDesign as more of an app for multipage layout and not an actual design app. Illustrator and Photoshop are my top 2 favorite design apps.

lizard51
Feb 19, 2008, 05:03 PM
Dont use Photoshop for text use, please please please! The amount of hours I have had to sort out peoples wrong artwork for print because they have tried to make things solely in Photoshop - making text in odd layers, no spot colours where they should be etc.. Take it from me your text will print fuzzy - I have seen it many times!

As has been said, design programmes all have their uses, their pros and cons, learn to use each one for what it was meant for and you cant go wrong. You learn to work in your own way but ultimatley you need that artwork ready to go on the press or the web so you need set up your artwork correctly in the correct software. Software programmes should all work together as a team and the way CS2 and now CS3 ID, PS & ILL work together nowadays is great - even cutting and pasting between them! Makes Quark 5 look like a dinosaur!

Your workflow will seriously suffer if you do not learn how to optimize your skills and in a busy design studio you cant mess about, as customers want their jobs now now now!!

Some of the comments that have been made in the previous threads such as 'layout is not design' and 'InDesign is not graphic software' etc.. it all seems a little misguided and not seeing the bigger picture. Create and learn, learn and create and have fun while your doing it!!

P.S. - My prefs for design for print:
InDesign over Quark.
Illustrator over Freehand (would be good to combine the best of both tho).
Photoshop for everything Photoshop was made for (NOT editorial).
Extensis Suitcase
Preps and Apogee X PDF workflow (from Postscript to proof to plate in one easy step :))

Hope this all makes sense! - Ive rambled on a bit. ;)

MacBook-Gal
Feb 20, 2008, 06:14 PM
Thanks so much for all of the input, and suggestions, everyone!

question for the OP:

Do you mean that you will be making lots of business cards with the same basic design on them (as in, cards for a single company's 100 employees), or lots of different "blanks" for various clients.

Because I have to say that dropping a spreadsheet into ID's data merge feature and having it spit out all the cards at once with formatting and everything accounted for is really a lot easier than anything you can do in illustrator.

Actually, I am an artist, and want to be able to design a variety of note-cards, newsletters, posters, and business cards featuring my art. I won't be mass producing a lot(as in hundreds) of each design, but I do like the idea of having ID's formatting for doing some projects.

Dont use Photoshop for text use, please please please! The amount of hours I have had to sort out peoples wrong artwork for print because they have tried to make things solely in Photoshop - making text in odd layers, no spot colours where they should be etc.. Take it from me your text will print fuzzy - I have seen it many times!


Lol......I learned that the hard way! What you said makes a lot of sense. I will probably end up getting several of the Adobe programs so that I can use the right one for each project. It looks like it would be a better buy to get the Adobe Suite than it would be to purchase just one anyway. I think that I will be able to get a big student discount on them. I have been wanting to get illustrator so that I will be able to start doing some vector illustrations. Just out of curiosity, does the text get fuzzy in Illustrator when it is enlarged like it does in Photoshop?

Thanks again, for all of the input!:)

decksnap
Feb 20, 2008, 06:18 PM
No, it doesn't get fuzzy.

Edu discount is the way to go for sure.

IgnatiusTheKing
Feb 20, 2008, 06:25 PM
TJust out of curiosity, does the text get fuzzy in Illustrator when it is enlarged like it does in Photoshop?

Illustrator is vector based, so the art/text can be enlarged as much as you want and it will still be sharp and crisp.

MacBook-Gal
Feb 20, 2008, 07:06 PM
I like the sound of that! One other thing that I am wondering about Illustrator and InDesign is if they allow you to resize photos easily, without them getting stretched out of proportion in the process. It may be because of a setting that I need to change or something, but the older version of photoshop that I have been using will not keep the photos proportions when I resize them and it is really a pain.

nfocus design
Feb 20, 2008, 07:21 PM
I like the sound of that! One other thing that I am wondering about Illustrator and InDesign is if they allow you to resize photos easily, without them getting stretched out of proportion in the process. It may be because of a setting that I need to change or something, but the older version of photoshop that I have been using will not keep the photos proportions when I resize them and it is really a pain.

Just make sure the Constrain Proportions box is checked.

Krebstar
Feb 20, 2008, 09:41 PM
Out of Quark and InDesign, I would take InDesign, hands down.

Overall, Illustrator is my personal favorite to work in.

IgnatiusTheKing
Feb 20, 2008, 10:43 PM
I like the sound of that! One other thing that I am wondering about Illustrator and InDesign is if they allow you to resize photos easily, without them getting stretched out of proportion in the process. It may be because of a setting that I need to change or something, but the older version of photoshop that I have been using will not keep the photos proportions when I resize them and it is really a pain.

Hold down the shift key while dragging the corner of your image and the proportion will be maintained in both Illustrator and Photoshop. In InDesign it's a little different because you can scale the frame (using the shift) or the image and the frame (using cmd+shift) while dragging a corner.

ricke46
Feb 21, 2008, 02:23 AM
Illustrator.

papegaai
Feb 21, 2008, 02:58 AM
I agree. I voted InDesign, but I agree that Illustrator would be your best bet by far. I like InDesign for bigger projects, layouts and things. For smaller projects such as you mentioned, Illustrator is the way to go.

In inDesign can I make A1 posters and print A3 pages to stick together to make the poster?

taylorcjones
Feb 21, 2008, 03:01 AM
I love InDesign CS3, PS CS3, and Lightroom. Lightroom is similar to Bridge, but I think it's better for the kind of work I do on a daily basis. InDesign is great for layout and type setting. I really don't like Quark, but that's just because I started out using InDesign.

IgnatiusTheKing
Feb 21, 2008, 08:07 AM
In inDesign can I make A1 posters and print A3 pages to stick together to make the poster?

You can make a document any size you want and any number of pages you want in ID.

MacBook-Gal
Feb 21, 2008, 09:35 PM
Being able to resize the images without them getting squished and stretched out of proportion helps a lot! How did I manage to overlook that little button?:o Thanks a million for telling me how to do it!:)

Santabean2000
Feb 22, 2008, 02:08 AM
Agreed. You can open a can of beans with a hammer OR a can opener. Both will work, although one is designed specifically for the purpose and the other is a little less practical.

Exactly. I got Adobe Master Collection, (Ed version - so cheaper I guess...), now the world is at my mouse point.:D