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Librarian Design Share

inspiration for library creatives

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Publicizing Social Media Accounts

Follow the Michigan Tech Archives on Social Media - bookmark side twoLike so many libraries and archives, the Michigan Technological University Archives was trying to publicize their Twitter account to their campus community. Their solution? A web advertisement on the library homepage and a great bookmark. Sawyer Newman, Communications and Research Assistant at Michigan Tech’s J. Robert Van Pelt and John & Ruanne Opie Library, created the bookmark to publicize the Archive’s new Twitter account and remind patrons of their other social media accounts.

Side one of the bookmark (above) is also a digital slide within the library and on the library’s homepage. Side two (left) includes all of the Archive’s social media accounts for the community to follow.

You can find the PDF version of this bookmark along with the original Photoshop and Illustrator files on the Librarian Design Share Google Drive.

The Anti-All-Nighter

As we continue to make our way through finals week and the end of another academic semester, it’s clear that you are doing some amazing outreach work at your libraries. Earlier this week we shared the emerging trend of The Finals Fairy, a benevolent creature whose power lies in its ability to bring sugary snacks to stressed out students. A bit less magical, but just as effective, are libraries that seek to help take some of the stress out of the end of the semester with study break activities and research and writing help.

Ashley Chassé at the Boston College O’Neill Library did an amazing job promoting her library’s Anti-All-Nighter program with this lovely poster. Here’s Ashley discussing her design:

Continue reading “The Anti-All-Nighter”

A Reading Journey

Selling adult reading programs can be a challenge. The demands of family, work, and day-to-day life can easily overpower leisure time that might be spent on reading, and finding the right marketing message to reach this busy audience can be tricky. Earlier this month we received a beautiful and thoughtful design submission from Stephanie Huff, Marketing & Communications Manager at the Wichita Public Library. Her poster and brochure designs highlight this year’s theme for WPL’s Adult Winter Reading Program, “Tour de Wichita: a reading journey,” which incorporates city sites and attractions. It’s a stellar example of community outreach and attractive design.

Continue reading “A Reading Journey”

NIH Compliance in Four Steps

In 2013, when the National Institute of Health began enforcing its Public Access Policy to withhold or delay federal grant funding if peer-reviewed publications were not submitted to PubMed Central (PMC), it caused a great stir in the world of researchers and in the academic and medical library community.

Continue reading “NIH Compliance in Four Steps”

That Librarian with the Beard

We might be surprised by what stands out to our patrons or students about our respective libraries. Sometimes it’s a spot in the building with just the right amount of sunlight and privacy for studying; sometimes it’s a Facebook post that makes them smile; and sometimes it’s just a friendly librarian with an epic beard.

Stacy Taylor, Emerging Technologies Librarian at Adams State University’s Nielson Library, took an aspect (well, person, really) of the library that made a positive impression on students and used it to market the library’s ability to help students. It’s genius, really. Here’s Stacy’s take on this outreach effort:

Continue reading “That Librarian with the Beard”

Advertising Hours

For those of us in academic libraries, it’s that time of year again: Finals Week (or impending Finals Doom, depending on who you ask). All of our laptops are checked out, extension cords line the walkways, and students begin appearing more and more disheveled as the week progresses. Our patrons are less interested in research help (all those papers were due last week!) and more interested in the amount of coffee needed to power through an all-night study session.

One thing that often changes during this time of year are our hours of operation. Extended hours during finals week, fewer open hours immediately afterward–all of these changes require eye-catching, easy-to-scan signage. Here are a few great signage submissions advertising library hours.

Edita Sicken, Instruction and Access Services Librarian at Manchester University’s Funderburg Library, used Canva to create the her library’s changing hours signage.

Extended Hours Signage

Here’s what Edita had to say about her hours signage:

I used Canva for all of these and none of them utilize any of their pay-per-use graphics. Some of the images used were our own, most of them are under creative commons licenses. I’m well-versed in Photoshop, Illustrator, and Publisher but Canva is really handy to use because of all the templates, filters, fonts, and graphic elements that are readily available. Plus there’s a mobile version available so if I’m out at a conference with my iPad and realize I forgot to get a promo image out, I can throw one together really quick!

Fall Break Hours Signage Spring Break Hours Signage

Sometimes our library’s operating schedule can get a bit complicated, which means our signage often suffers from too much information all at once.

Jonas Lamb, Public Services Librarian at the University of Alaska-Southeast’s Egan Library, recently revamped his library’s hours signage using Photoshop. Here’s the old version, which, as Jonas mentions, “often got over complicated with intersession and holiday exceptions.”

Egan Library Old Signage

You can see that the new versions follow a nice template with variations in color for different times of year. It’s a great way to highlight changes in hours while still maintaining a steady look and feel.

Egan Library Summer Hours
Here’s Jonas’ talking about this new signage:

I’d reached my wit’s end with library signage designed using Word, Publisher, PPT, etc and finally taught myself enough Photoshop to put something visually simple to refresh our existing signage.  Around the same time we began using 4×6 acrylic table top-6 sided sign holders and an 80” digital display so I had an opportunity to re-use elements of the new design into a variety of sizes and layouts, subtracting text elements where appropriate.

Egan Library Spring Hours

Egan Library Regular Hours

What are your solutions to advertising modified hours of operation? Do you have other signage you’d like to share? Or better yet, signage you want to change but aren’t sure how it can be improved? Let us know!

PDF and JPEG versions of Edita’s Canva signs are available on the Librarian Design Share Google Drive, as are Jonas’ original Photoshop files.  As always, resuse designs responsibly!

MOAR ACRL Posters — This is the end, folks

April and I are wrapping up our series on stellar conference posters today with some wonderful submissions. We hope you’ve enjoyed it. It’s such a tricky medium, and I think the more examples we can see of good work, the better the quality of posters at professional conferences will become.

Data Management and Broader Impacts: A Holistic ApproachTitle: Data Management and Broader Impacts: A Holistic Approach
Presenter: Megan N. O’Donnell, Scholarly Communications and Science & Technology Librarian, Iowa State University Library

Megan’s poster is available via the Digital Repository at Iowa State University. Here’s what she had to share about her design process:

I wanted my poster to be bold, easy to understand, and fun. Since the topic was likely to be unfamiliar to some of the conference attendees, I also needed to accommodate some wordy bits for context. The layout was the most time consuming part – I had everything I wanted pretty early but getting it all to fit and look good took a long time. The wordy bits took up more room than expected but that’s partly because they were in 45 point font as I wanted it to be readable at a distance. This meant losing some valuable space but it was needed. I did save some time by using icons from Microsoft and Icons8.com though I did tweak, combine, and recolor everything on the poster because I was sticking to a limited color pallet. I guess the last thing I should mention is that this is a BIG poster. It measures at 7.5 by 3.5 feet. I did this on purpose. I like to maximize the space I’m given, but it also meant it was going to be expensive to print and a pain to travel with. In the end I decided to pay extra to have it printed on “polyfab” which is a thin vinyl like fabric that can be folded up and packed in a suitcase. My printing choices, while expensive, were worth it. The size of the poster was perfect –everything was readable–and the polyfab, while not without some quirks, was fantastic.

Growing a Sustainable Workshop Series

Title: Growing a Sustainable Workshop Series
Presenters: Chantelle Swaren, Assessment & Outreach Librarian and Nicole Tekulve, Team Lead, Information Commons, The University of Tennessee-Chattanooga

Chantelle and Nicole had buttons, y’all. BUTTONS!!!!! Here’s Chantelle talking about their design process:

Nicole started out sketching her idea for the poster in PowerPoint since she is most comfortable working in that program. After the design direction was established, Chantelle built the working file in Photoshop for more design flexibility and to ensure high-quality output.

We wanted to give a visual nod to the ACRL theme of sustainability while keeping the poster as crisp and readable as possible. To that end, we discarded photos and intricate images in favor of simple icons and limited text. We converted all images and other design elements to fall within our established palette: Pantone 158C, 575C, and white. Many of our images came from openclipart.org and pixabay.com which are great resources for icons and other images.

Throughout the process, we sought input from friends and colleagues, including design help  from Nicole’s partner who runs the silkscreen and design business Grand Palace. If you are working on a poster, our advice is to invite other people to critique your work; it usually improves the final product! After you’ve looked at the same design forever it helps to have a fresh set of eyes suggest minor tweaks (as an example- that’s how we ended up adding the green bar within our poster’s header, which helps to anchor the title).

We decided to print with PosterPresentations.com and chose the SuperSaver Student Special option – and we were thrilled with the quality. We resized our design to best fit the canvas-size offered;  we adjusted the content to maintain fidelity with our original design, and the new dimensions allowed us to maximize the use of white space.

ButtonsChantelle was kind enough to share the original Photoshop file of their poster, which is now available on the Librarian Design Share Google Drive folder.

 

 

 

 

 

dancingdogsTitle: Dancing, Dogs, and Disco Balls: Sustaining a happy library outreach community
Presenters: Kathy Anders, Graduate Studies Librarian, Stephanie Graves, Director of Learning and Outreach, Elizabeth German, Instructional Design Librarian, Texas A&M University Libraries

Elizabeth German describes how the librarians from Texas A&M created their poster (and how it almost looked like a disco floor!):

The design process really started with the content. We had a couple brainstorming meetings drawing out ideas for what we wanted and we knew that we wanted to have a “happy” poster that embodied the same spirit of our outreach program.  At one point we thought about replicating a disco floor with the different squares being different sections of our poster. But things didn’t start taking shape until we had written everything that we wanted to be on the poster and then we tried to fit it into our design ideas, the dance floor just wasn’t big enough. The idea of a dance pattern just came to me in the middle of the night and we really liked the idea of the movement it implied. Again conceptually, we thought the different points might be inside the shoes of the dance pattern but once we were working with the content, it wasn’t going to work. In the end, I kept fiddling with the content and arrived at this design.

In terms of technology, we went old school and used PowerPoint. It’s a classic and has staying power for a reason. I used Photoshop to manipulate the photos. We don’t have administrative access on our computers, so if you want to install a font you have to send in a help desk ticket every time. I’ve gotten around that (with permission!) by having them install SkyFonts. It’s software that allows you to download whichever Google Fonts you’d like and so that way I had more creative control over the look of the poster. We used Wordle.net to create the wordle. For the data illustrations, we weren’t happy with the excel charts so I created those in PowerPoint. I think if I had more time, that is the one thing I would have gone back to fuss with more.

Take-aways:

  • Don’t sacrifice your content for the design
  • Let go of great ideas when they don’t work.
  • Try creating your own illustrations for data (instead of using Excel’s).

 

 

Inspired By the Movies: Wes Anderson Makes All Slides Better

ACRL 2015 was amazing, folks. There were so many brilliant, passionate, friendly librarians in one amazing city that I thought my head might explode. Two of those rad librarians were my co-presenters, April Aultman Becker (also co-creator of Librarian Design Share) and Abe Korah. On Friday afternoon we presented a panel on facilitating inquiry throughout the research process and helping students develop thoughtful questions.

These are our slides.

As we were planning our presentation, April and I joked to Abe that we were going to model our slides on a Wes Anderson movie. We’re big fans of his quirky visual style and thought it might be an appropriate look and feel for Portland.

Thanks to April’s fast-as-lightning investi-googling skills, we ran into this fantastic Wes Anderson Color Palettes Tumblr and decided to use the color scheme from Moonrise Kingdom.

Moonrise Kingdom Color PaletteWe also decided to lift an additional color from Suzy’s dress, which gave us some pink for highlights and a fun background for some of our slides.

Suzy's amazing pink dressThe fonts we used were Josefin Sans and Damion, both of which are available as Google Fonts (JS | D) as well as free desktop downloads (JS | D), which is a must if you want to coordinate your handout with your slides (which you know we did).

Our icons (credited on the last slide) come from the always amazing Noun Project, and were just modified according to our color scheme using Adobe Photoshop. The slides themselves were created in Google Slides.

You can access the published version of our Google Slides above, but if you’re interested in adapting them, download them from the Librarian Design Share Google Drive Presentation Folder.

Making an Impact with your Slide Deck

With many of us in academic libraries heading out to Portland today and tomorrow for ACRL 2015, it’s a good time to talk a little about what makes a good slide deck. Today’s submission is an example of a presentation with

  • clean lines,
  • a nice cohesive color scheme,
  • great statement photographs,
  • clear, attractive font choices, and
  • good use of text alignment for emphasis and impact.

This slide deck is courtesy of Alana Verminski, Collection Development Librarian at the University of Vermont Libraries and Kelly Blanchat, Electronic Resources Librarian at Queens College from their 2015 ER&L conference presentation:


We created the slides using Google Slides and most of the images were made using Google Draw. All the fonts are from Google Fonts. Kelly did some work in Photoshop to tweak a few of the images and the spreadsheet used in slide 10 was developed in Excel. Our presentation addressed many of the challenges (new) electronic resources librarians face when starting or transitioning into a new role. We focused on workflows and how revamping and developing new processes can facilitate the building of a new professional identity and gaining respect from colleagues.

You can contact Alana or Kelly for more information about their fantastic slides.

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