As a graphic designer, there never seems to be enough hours in the day to get everything we need done. And as our To-Do lists get longer and longer and deadlines approach we’re always looking for ways to do things faster and make the day easier. One of the biggest ways to simply save on time is experience. The more experience you have, the more proficient and more comfortable you are working. By spending the time mastering your skills you end up developing timesaving methods and have encountered mistakes and complications that you now know how to avoid.
So even if you’re not as experienced as you’d like to be, here are some more important tips to help you save on time, which ultimately saves you money.
-Learn and practice using keyboard shortcuts
We all know “command c” or “ctrl-alt-delete” but there are so many keyboard shortcuts that can help save you time. By taking the time to learn and practice these shortcuts you will begin to notice how fast you can complete a project.
-Customize your workspace in design applications
We’ve all been there when your looking for a tool and you can’t seem to find the panel behind all the clutter on your workspace. Well it’s a big timesaver to have all the necessary tools and panels readily available for you and be able to access them quickly. You can customize your own workspaces or choose one of the standard default workspace settings for easy use for Type, Web, or Video design.
-Create reusable files or templates with commonly used settings
If you find yourself creating the same projects but just for new clients then designing a basic template for those projects will save you hours of time. So before you begin your project you should set up your document with the correct size and dimensions, create necessary guides, and make layer folders you will need each time. Save it as a Template and title it something like “my template” so the next time you begin to design your project will be ready to go.
-Record and use Photoshop actions
One of Photoshop’s most helpful time-savers is the actions panel. This action allows you to record a task that you plan on doing again and again so it can be used later for similar projects. So if you have ten files that all need to be re-sized the same just record the steps with one file and once you’re finished you have a new action. Then just use it on the rest of the files to do the work ten times faster.
-Vow to learn and use one timesaving tip per day
There are so many keyboard shortcuts out there that assigning all these to memory in one day is impossible. So instead pick one or two and practice using it each day. You may not realize it at first but by the end of the week you’ll be using your short cuts like second nature. By saving time on your projects you’ll have more time to spend enjoying the benefits of being a successful graphic designer.