Starting out as a graphic designer and wondering what you need to be productive and efficient? Seeing how you are a creative person, you have most of the essential stuff handled—like passion, inspiration, and imagination! But what about the stuff that makes work easier? Of course, just like any job, you need the right tools.
Here are 5 essential things that every Ottawa professional graphic designer needs to work well and succeed:
1. Laptop or Desktop With High-Res
Regardless of what kind of graphic designer you are (digital nomad vs. at-home worker vs. professional in a company), you will need a top-quality computer that performs without fail. Some laptops and desktops are better than others. You need one that has a high resolution screen that works well with graphic design software, like Adobe. Some new desktops and laptops even function as a digital canvas where you can grab a stylus and draw right on the screen, making it a versatile option and highly cost effective.
2. Notebook or Sketchbook
Plain paper as a graphic designer? What? But it’s no joke. Graphic designers oftentimes jot down their ideas in a sketchbook, using inks and pencils and geometric shapes. You never know when inspiration is going to strike—especially when you are discussing options with clients and need to visually show them a rough representation of your ideas.
3. Portable & Secure Storage
As a graphic designer, many of your projects are going to have huge file sizes, and you are going to be saving loads of sensitive data to your computer. Instead of relying on the computer’s own hard drive or solid state drive, get a portable terabyte (TB) drive that can be encrypted. Optionally, you can get several USB drives to do the same thing. This also helps you save projects in multiple places in case data gets corrupted or you need to revert to an older copy of a project.
4. Pantone Swatch Book
When you do a lot of print work, you will encounter spot colors. While Pantone swatch books do not come cheap, they are indispensable. Not only do you get a close match to all CMYK colors, you can also help clients decide on four colors within a palette and stop them from adding a fifth.
5. Tablet & Stylus
Two reasons you need a tablet and stylus:
1. You need something portable to showcase your work to new and potential clients;
2. You need a place where you can draw graphics that connects to cloud storage, allowing you to access designs and work from anywhere.
Instead of carrying around a high-end work computer, a tablet, such as an iPad Pro, can be a cost-effective option with tons of features available.
There you have it! Did any of these items surprise you? While there is a lot of technology that graphic designers can make use of, these items are multipurpose and portable. This helps you get the job done quickly without reducing the quality. Now, it’s time to get busy!
Add your voice to the conversation
Did we miss something? Have any other recommendations? Let us know by replying in the comments section.