At work the other day my boss told me to come up with some interesting ways to put information on the Southern Legacy giving education page. I immediately thought of an infographic, and I was shocked when he told me to give it a try.

First Vision

I first thought of Sweet Heart Circle, a historic area at Georgia Southern. I wanted to washout the background and use the bushes and trees to represent different statistics. When I told this to my co-worker (the only one out of the two of us who knows how to use photoshop and indesign), she warned me that it might not work. Let’s just say she was right. My boss took one look at our results and asked me to start from scratch.

Second Vision

After finding a countless number of infographics as Monopoly boards, I decided to try a Life board. I wanted students to be driving in the Life car picking which direction to go based on where other students have given. This time my boss wanted to teach me how to use photoshop along the way. We spent over two hours tweeking my vision. During those two hours my boss continued saying, “No you can’t do that with photoshop.” Finally I was able to finish up the infographic with photoshop the next day by myself. Here is our result:

After all was said and done I learned these six things about making infographics:

  1. Start out with something simple.
  2. You most likely cannot use photoshop to do everything your creative genius comes up with.
  3. The bigger the original picture the better the infographic result.
  4. Start with one statistic.
  5. Don’t give up, but try other possibilities.
  6. A little practice and patience goes a long way.
My advice to anyone who wants to create their own infographic with absolutely no training in anything graphic design: Get an amazing graphic designer to help you, and keep low expectations at first.