Prompted by a David Gaughran (opens in a new tab) newsletter a few months ago, I’ve been working to improve my image creation skills for better social and website engagement. I jumped into Canva a few months ago because it’s the go to solution. I am not a Canva fan. It’s a great product and I love that it’s web based but I got frequently annoyed with it because its workflow doesn’t gel with mine.
I even took a course, but no, Canva isn’t for me right now. Instead, I’m going back to my Open Source roots and installed GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) – think Photoshop but for free.
Which is great BUT like Photoshop GIMP expects the user to know what they are doing and I don’t.
I found two amazing, low-low, cost courses to change that (non-affiliate links below).
Chip Kidd is a rock star among Book and Comic Book cover design. He’s created some of the most iconic covers of the last few decades.
Chip’s course is less about the how and more about the what, as in WHAT should my cover look like? Even if you’re not going to create the cover yourself this course will improve the brief you give to your artist to get the best cover for your book. Chip also goes into detail on how to proto-type your cover. If you’re an arts and crafts type person you’ll love this approach.
Michael Davies GIMP course is an engaging practical walk though on how to use ALL the features of the program. After guiding the student through the tool Michael moves into examples with different projects, including 2D and 3D book covers. This course is over 37 hours long, so it’s a major investment of your time.
If you tend to farm out most of your graphic creation work, including book covers, you only need Chip’s course. If you want to get more hands on and create your covers, ad graphics and social images, buy both for less than £30 while they’re on special offer.