Using free and fun photo editing programs for work

Discussion Forum Design Tools Using free and fun photo editing programs for work
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User Experience Evangelist
SAP SE

We all know the dilemma. Sometimes you have to come up with an original image for a presentation (or for a website like this one) and just using a standard photo from an image library or a picture of your own doesn’t cut it.  In my work, I’ve used free software for the consumer market such as Be Funky (which I prefer to Instagram) to add effects to otherwise boring images for storyboards, team workshops, presentations, posts, etc.

I’d be VERY interested in any examples or tips from the community about how you use commercial photo editing programs to spice up your work.

esther

I find this approach to be very useful for validating scenario ideas with quick and semi-dirty storyboards.

I have frequently experienced that nobody in a project team feels confident enough about their hand-drawn storyboards to share them with customers (a valid concern in some cases ;-)). Searches in internal image libraries can be very time consuming, or the motif you need just isn’t there. If you don’t want to get in trouble with copy rights, it’s best to create your own pictures. This can be done very quickly once you are clear about your story. Find a background that fits the setting of your scenario, collect some props like a laptop, smartphone, coffee cup etc., promote several team members to models and start your photo session. Don’t worry too much about details, as the pictures don’t have to be self-explanatory, you can always use text for explaining the full story.

If time allows, I always edit the pictures in the way Esther mentioned. I prefer to give them a non-naturalistic look, for various reasons: A storyboard is not about reality, the key aspect rather is telling a story showcasing a better version of reality. Giving it an artificial touch helps to foster imagination and encourages participants to develop it further. Plus, it can be pretty distracting for participants to comment on a storyboard while they recognize the person who is interviewing them in its pictures. If the pictures are alienated enough, it will be hard to notice the connection. Comic-style combined with high-contrast/black-and-white is the quickest way for me to get the desired result (see picture).

 

Hello Esther i always enjoy Reading your works. Maybe you can help me out on some questionnaires. 1 understanding basics and 2 inplementation.

you would be a great person to help our organisation.

User Experience Evangelist
SAP SE

Thanks for the nice feedback! I’d love to help out, however I’m not quite sure with what exactly you are having trouble.  Can you explain a bit more what you want to do and where you are having trouble? (Also, I’m on vacation until week after next, so please excuse a delay in my answer.)

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