Tips for using InDesign at work: Keara Donnachie interview

Indesign for publishers

Ahead of the upcoming training course InDesign for publishers, BookMachine are running a series of interviews with industry professionals to understand how they use the tool at work. The first interview by Katie Dodson is with Keara Donnachie, Marketing and Publicity Manager at Sandstone Press.

1) How frequently do you use InDesign and when did you start using it regularly?

I use InDesign every day. We were introduced to it on my MSc Publishing course at Edinburgh Napier, but now I couldn’t live without it.

2) What methods do you use to keep updated and improve on your skills?

YouTube tutorials, such as Terry White, are great. I’m a visual learner, so I would prefer to watch someone go through the motions, rather than try and read lengthy instructions. Tutorials formed a large part of my training, and it’s great to be able to go back to them if you haven’t tried something in a long time! I’m by no means an expert, and I’m still learning every day.

3) Would you mind sharing a top trick with us?

I see a lot of publishers on social media sharing blog tour posters that are very hard to read. It’s better to have a less busy background if possible. Sometimes less is more! If you have to use an image as your backdrop, the transparency tool is your friend.

4) Could you please share a couple of links to your work?

The banners on our home page and books page and some blog tours (click to view).

And this …

Example IN

5) What advice would you give to anyone wanting to improve how they use InDesign?

First of all, don’t be scared! Like anything else, the more you use it, the more you learn. Also, start simple: don’t try creating catalogues when you haven’t managed a poster yet! Once you have a template, it can be used for different campaigns, so spend a lot of time getting it right.

6) What do you use InDesign for mainly ?

InDesign is an essential tool for creating AI sheets and press releases, which form the core of my campaigns. I also use it to create website and email banners, flyers and blog tours for social media. InDesign makes creating our rights catalogue for London and Frankfurt Book Fair much easier: when handling so much information, it’s important to be able to adjust text and images at a moment’s notice.

If you too would like to improve on how you use In Design/Photoshop at work, you can register on these courses by following the links below:
InDesign: Photoshop:

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