If you have been following my work(Instagram, email list, blog), you might have understood that I only work on social media design projects. I write content, create products around it. That’s my niche, and I play around within that niche.
By the way, if you don’t know who the hell am I, I am Sujith Godavarthi. Nice to meet you!
In this article, I am gonna talk about how I learned to design content for social media using Adobe Photoshop. And in the end, I am gonna talk about the tips and processes that you can follow to learn the same.
Let me start with a short summary of how I ended up in the designing field.
In 2014, I joined NIT Allahabad (India) to study Product and Industrial Engineering. After 1 year, I was sure that it wasn’t for me. And at the same time, I didn’t (couldn’t) leave the college as I don’t have any freaking clue about what to do after that.
So, I sticked to it but parallelly started learning Image editing, just for fun. That’s when I realized that my niche is somewhere around this. Because I enjoyed it. It’s like a play to me, which I realized after a long time.
Then I learned video editing and 3D modeling too. And I’ve learned softwares like Photoshop, After Effects, Premiere Pro, and, Blender 3D.
So, in the final year, when I was planning on what course should I take on (related to animation) after graduating, I got a job in a startup. Lucky me! (I did go to the interview, only considering that it’s a design-related job).
And I joined that Bangalore-based start-up in 2018.
My work there was to design content for social media. And that’s when it all started.
Although I don’t have a full-time job now (I might never do one), I still do the same (as a freelancer & content creator). Create content, educate people, help people learn more about designing via my blog, and create digital products and templates around it.
Now, the big question!
How Did I Learn Designing Social Media Posts
Well, first of all, I learned photoshop. I learned it from the perspective of editing images and making some cool stuff. So, basically, it has nothing to do with learning how to create graphics. But, I’ve learned most of the tools and features that photoshop offers. I did all this when I was studying engineering.
And then when I joined the startup, they would give me a content calendar and I should create the graphics as per the schedule and give it to them. Initially, I didn’t have any framework on how to design. So, I used to search for some related keywords on Google to find some inspiration.
Basically, I used to take 10 different things from 10 different designs and put them on my design. It’s like a design mashup. And that’s how I got started.
Initially, it used to take me a lot of time and many design changes used to come. As time passed, the more designs I’ve created, the less time it took for me to create a single graphic, and the fewer design changes I got from my manager, and the better I got at not copying the designs.
And it was only after starting my freelance journey I’ve figured out a certain framework (kind of) on how to design social media posts.
(My HR asked me to resign from my job, as they didn’t have enough funds to support me due to the COVID Effect. Basically, I got fired).
But the point is I got better at designing. Just, trial and error. And obviously, I’ve made a lot of errors in the learning process, which is why I’ve written this article – just to make sure that you can learn it the right way.
How You Can Learn Designing Social Media Graphics
If you are a complete beginner in designing or trying to switch from Canva to Photoshop, here is how you can start learning photoshop to create social media posts.
Start with Youtube. Obviously, it’s not a secret that Youtube is the modern college. I’ve learned everything (design, 3d modeling, marketing, etc.) from Youtube.
Talking about the basics of Photoshop, I’ve written a beginner’s guide on that topic. So, that guide will help you on what tools you should learn first to get starting in social media designing.
- Adobe Tutorials
- Envato Tuts 3 hr Basic Video (Recommended)
- 30 days of Photoshop from PHlearn (Recommended)
- Envato Tuts Blog+
- Photoshop Cafe Basic Tuts
Once you get the hang of it, get ready to be a copycat.
Copying Is Ok
Yes, copying is Ok. But only when you are just learn from it and not using the design as your own, online.
Go to Instagram, Pinterest, or any other social platform and try to find some designs that look cool to you. Now, figure out how you can create the same. Just practice replicating the designs that you see in Photoshop.
It took a lot of time for me to transition from “creating a design in a few hours” to “creating a design in few minutes”. My personal record is I designed 10 posts for a personal trainer’s Instagram account (fitness niche) in just 2 hours. I didn’t get paid for that, but that’s another story.
So, take it slow. That’s ok.
Get Better At It
Now that you can copy designs, it’s time to design based on your own ideas. You can get inpsired from other designs, but don’t copy paste.
That’s ok, but how do I know what images should I choose, which fonts I should use & when, how to create backgrounds, etc. That’s when my blog will help (I hope it does). Or you can simply search on Google or Youtube, for specific topics or doubts (that’s what I did when I was learning).
But before that, I want you to read the 6 step framework to design social media posts so that you’ll have an idea of where to start.
The learning curve of Photoshop is pretty steep. But to design content for social media, you don’t need all those features and tools that photoshop offers. Make sure you follow all the steps and check out all the references I’ve linked in this article. You’ll be good to go.
Still confused? That’s ok. Mail me: firstname.lastname@example.org. I don’t charge for giving you a suggestion.