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Librarian Design Share

inspiration for library creatives

A New Beginning

In January we announced that we would be sunsetting Librarian Design Share. It was not a decision we took lightly, and it was one we mulled over for months. In response we heard from so many people about the ways in which Librarian Design Share had helped them. Thank you so much for reading, commenting, retweeting, and generally supporting this site.

Among these responses were folks asking if we’d consider passing along the torch to a new set of administrators who could keep Librarian Design Share going. It wasn’t something we had even thought of at that point, but the idea was exciting. Fast forward a month and a half, and this idea has turned into a reality.

We are so excited to announce that we are passing the Librarian Design Share torch to two new administrators, Naomi Gonzales and Jessica Denke. These wonderful, creative, and enthusiastic librarian-designers will be making Librarian Design Share their own. They will continue to cultivate a space where library workers can share designs and be inspired by the creativity of others. With that said, let’s get to know Naomi and Jess a bit better:

photo of jess denke

Hi!  I’m Jess, and I’m the Assessment and Outreach Librarian at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Pennsylvania.  I serve as the liaison to the social sciences and spend a lot of my time teaching and collaborating with faculty and students.  I’ve been very fortunate to have encouraging bosses and mentors who have allowed me to pursue design work in each of my library positions.  I’ve felt inspired and encouraged by the work featured in Librarian Design Share and by the opportunity to share my own work with this community.  I’m so excited to be able to support the design work being done in libraries, this community is awesome!  You can find me on Twitter @missjessmlis – in addition to design, I love talking about all things #critlib and #infolit.  If you send me a picture of your cats I will send one of mine in return!

photo of naomi gonzales

Hello Librarian Design Share readers! I’m the Web Management Librarian at the University of Houston-Downtown in Houston, Texas and am thrilled to be able to continue the good work of April and Veronica! Like many other librarians, I fell into design years ago mostly due the “other duties as assigned” part of my job right out of library school. I did the best I could for a couple of years before discovering Librarian Design Share and the community of other self-taught librarians. Currently, I find myself diving deeper into the design waters and have become interested in universal design and learning how usability, accessibility and design all work together. In my free time, I enjoy hiking, making cocktails, and am also an admin for Librarian Wardrobe.

So, forget all that sunsetting stuff. It’s a new day around here and Veronica and I are confident that this site will only improve with new energy behind it! Keep the love and clicks coming, along with the great designs that you are all creating. We’ll be following along, too.

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Featured post

Using Piktochart for Promotional Flyers

If you’ve ever tried your hand at making an infographic, chances are you’ve run into Piktochart as an option. But what about Piktochart for flyers?

Our latest submission is from Emily Merrifield, Undergraduate Experience Librarian at California State University in Sacramento. She has this to say about her designs:

I wanted to share promotional materials I’ve created using the Piktochart site (it was easiest to combine them with pdfs but let me know if that is a problem). I subscribe to the $40/year “pro” version which includes many more templates than the free version. I have attached 3 documents with 2 flyers on each for: workshops help in the library, poetry readings in our Special Collections dept, and a stress relief table provided during finals week. All of the images were used to promote on social media, and the stress relief flyers were printed out (about 22 by 28 inches) to display near the table. Icons and pictures used were either from the Piktochart options or from Pixabay.com.

I have also used Piktochart for infographics and images that I’ve put on libguides. I’ve found that Piktochart has improved a lot since I started using it in early 2016 – and allows for using their designs or easily adapting to your own.

One thing that is stands out about Emily’s designs is the use of the library logo colors in a way that’s attention grabbing without being overstated. I’m also a big fan of the stress-inducing mess behind “Are You Stressed?” in the second flyer.two fliers for stress relief activities

research workshop promotional flyers

Emily also mentions the use of Pixabay.com, which is a fantastic resource for free images that are CC0, meaning free for commercial use & no attribution required. You can create an account for free and it even gives you the option to donate some money to the original artist if you’re so inclined.

All of Emily’s submitted flyers are available on our Google Drive. All submitted work will be published on this site under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license.

Combine Display and Flyer Design

Here is an interesting design from Rainer Rees-Mertins, who works at Lib4RI-Library for the Research Institutes within the ETH Domain: Eawag, Empa, PSI & WSL in Switzerland.

survey

Rainer created the flyer in order to get community feedback on the library’s services. The flyer contains a QR code that leads directly to a survey and survey information on the back.  Community members were encouraged to take the flyer directly from the display.  I think that this is a cool, interactive display idea!

Rainer says,

…the flyer consists in Indesign of four swatches in standard postcard format, into which the print version was then cut. We placed the four flyers next to each other so patrons could read “Survey” already from pretty far away and they could take a flyer nonetheless. However, we also used the flyer as a whole for online materials to advertise the survey.

Rainer was also intentional about the colors that they used when designing the display.

The colours in the background are an enlarged version of our logo (see back of the flyer for the logo). I try to use these colours as often as possible for designs I make, because of the recognition value. What I liked especially about the flyer was the shift in the font colour from white to black in the “U”.

Thanks to Rainer, you are able to find this design on our Google drive.  All submitted work will be published on this site under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license.

 

Sign Design: Branding through Consistency

Determining how to attract attention to signs can be a struggle.  Each sign is carefully crafted to draw the community’s attention to a particular announcement, but when there are too many signs the effect may be the opposite.

Linda Kramer of the Martin Luther College Library in New Ulm, Minnesota navigated this predicament by varying sign messages and colors but maintaining a simple, consistent design.  She submitted a series of Canva signs that she made when she realized that students weren’t aware of the names or locations of library services.  She used anecdotal evidence to determine what to highlight.

 

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Linda says,

My goal was to allow each sign to be read in two ways: using all of the words, or using just the white words. Because one iteration of each sign was placed on digital signs around campus, the language needed to be easily read in a few seconds while students are walking past the signs. It was fun to try to come up with wording that could be read in both ways, and I think it worked well, except for a couple where the punctuation got in the way.

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In describing the project, Linda noted that she rotated the signs on digital displays around campus, hoping that the alternating colors would catch the eye and the consistent style would be associated with the library.

You can download all twelve PNG posters from the Librarian Design Share Google Drive, and you can contact Linda with any design-related questions.

Happy Poetry Month

Libraries have the special opportunity to generate excitement about poetry every April.

My colleague Stephanie Hanni of Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Pennsylvania made a display in the style of blackout poetry.

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She also created buttons!

 

She shares her thoughts:

In my head, I envisioned an image of an older poet with a gnarly beard and was elated when I found one! I used several overlays to create the look of a picture created from words and then I created the title of the poster to mimic the “blackout poetry” using Photoshop to construct the words. It was a lot of fun to create!
Pictures used in the poster were from creativecommons.org
Fonts used in this poster: Traveling Typewriter, creator: Carl Krull. 

I work right down the hall from this display and there was a lot of buzz from our community members about these buttons.

 

Thanks to Stephanie for her work on the display and for sharing it with Librarian Design Share!  We would love to see your National Poetry Month displays – submit your own work to show our community how you generated excitement about sonnets, limericks, or haiku.  All submitted work will be published on this site under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license.

 

Signs About Sound

A couple of weeks ago we asked for submissions about sound, and you delivered! We received three sound-specific submissions, all of which take a different design approach. It’s worth noting that in spite of these differences, the first two of our featured submissions make use of the red, yellow, green color scheme to denote acceptable noise levels within the library. The last, designed for digital signage, uses large eye-catching text and simple icons to get the message across.

The first submission is from Brenda Sevigny-Killen at the Bennett D. Katz Library – University of Maine at Augusta.

Sign that reads "Silent Zone" in a library.

Brenda had this to say about her signs:

After our library greatly deaccessioned our reference materials, we opened up space for collaborative study areas with rolling whiteboards, chairs & tables, and comfort seating.  To encourage collaborative use of this new space, staff designed signs to promote the new area.  We also designed a sign for the quiet area since the multiple tables for 6 falsely encouraged noisy collaboration. There are times when we have to redirect groups to the collaborative zone so this space remains sacred for silent study. This project has been hugely successful and we now find we need much more collaborative space as more and more students find sanctity and camaraderie within the library walls.  Another happy side effect is getting to know more of our students and subtly infusing a atmosphere of support, care, and staff dedication which we hope contributes to their success.

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Brenda’s posters were designed in Publisher and are available in our Google Drive.

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Erin McCoy at Massasoit Community College in Brockton, Massachusetts submitted designs that she created in Canva.

I was inspired by a recent conversation on a list serve to take a look at signs for “sound expectations” – I like the one in the google drive, so I decided to riff on it in Canva for those of us without Adobes or Publisher skills.

Our library is one big room, that is square, so it’s hard to place signage and to communicate where the different zones are, so we’ll see how this goes!

 

 

Kudos to Erin for tackling the challenge of signage for the one-room library layout! You can find the complete set of Erin’s signage on the Librarian Design Share Google Drive.

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Our final submission is from Lauri Miller at the Paul & Harriett Mack Library in Bethlehem, PA. Lauri created her sign through Google Slides and used icons from one of my favorite resources, The Noun Project.

Here is my submission about sound levels in the library. I created it in Google Slides which feeds the digital sign in our lobby. The sign flips between slides, so I tried to keep it brief, understandable, and eye catching the foot traffic in and out of the library.  The cell phone icon is by Creative Stall, and the earbud icon is by Erman Tutan. Both are from nounproject.com.

cell phones on silent signage

Thanks to Brenda, Erin, and Lauri for their submissions. Remember, you can submit your own work to feature or request feedback at any time. All submitted work will be published on this site under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license.

In need of Submissions about Sound

Many responsibilities of library employees are opaque to our patrons, but the public has in mind that one of our day-to-day responsibilities is maintaining the library’s quiet environment.  My family makes frequent jokes about my proclivity towards shushing, which I argue is 100% false.  However, it is true that to be an environment that allows people to read, study, and research the library must maintain a certain level of muted sound.

I imagine that many of us are engaged in a balancing act of meeting patron’s varying needs for space for group work and silent study.  That’s why we are interested in the flyers, signs, and other materials that you use to communicate your library’s noise levels and environment to patrons –  the formal, informal, and funny!  Or if you have a work-in-progress that needs some feedback from other librarians, send it here too.  We’re looking forward to seeing the various ways that our community designs around this library phenomenon.

 

Flyers: Our Bread and Butter

April and I started our foray into graphic design for libraries designing humble flyers. We wanted to share information with our community about library events, hours, policies, and practices. Today’s post, the final Librarian Design Share post, brings us back to where it all began. Here are some lovely flyers to close out our site.

nov holiday craft.jpg
Created by Marisol Gerena from Plattekill Public Library using Microsoft Publisher
StudyPaws
Created by Christine Seliga, Library Services Specialist at Pima Community College – West Campus using Microsoft Publisher and Canva to advertise therapy dog study break.
IT'S COSMIC.jpg
Created by Christine Seliga, Library Services Specialist at Pima Community College – West Campus Library for a book display celebrating the solar eclipse. Created using Canva, Microsoft Publisher and Microsoft Paint.

Research Guides with Style

Springshare’s Libguides have become an integral part of our work as librarians, and although we’ve all come to accept certain best practices in their creation, there’s still the matter of making well-presented information look good. Miyo Sandlin, Digital Services and Instruction Librarian at St. Francis College, recently revamped the library’s APA Style research guide with an eye towards usability, aesthetics, and style.

Continue reading “Research Guides with Style”

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