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The Designer’s Toolbox: Getting Creative with Adobe Spark

Graphic DesignCloud Tools

In part three of our Design for Non-Designers series, we look at an accessible way to create visual stories using Adobe Spark. If you missed last week’s overview of the Adobe universe make sure to check out our post, Becoming Familiar with Adobe––you’ll find a comprehensive overview of Adobe products as well as links to our catalogue offerings for TechSoup Canada members.

What is Adobe Spark?

Launched in 2016, Adobe Spark is a one-stop shop for creating and sharing visual content across many formats––particularly social media posts, web stories and animated videos. You can create content from scratch or use the platform’s extensive range of templates and design elements to customize your creations according to your needs. (See our first post in the series, Crafting a Brand Narrative, to learn about creating a brand identity and style guide for your nonprofit organization!)

What Can You Do with Spark?

As a Spark user, you have access to a variety of free, professionally designed fonts and templates that you can build upon using photos from the web or your personal collections on Adobe Creative Cloud, Lightroom CC, Dropbox or Google Photos. Spark also offers a range of professional ‘themes’ that let you select layouts, colours, and fonts to customize content within a matter of minutes. If you are looking to create videos, with Spark you can also add photos, music, voiceovers and beautiful transitions for a sleek and dynamic clip that can be shared with virtually anyone. What’s more, your Spark projects are automatically synced across both web and mobile apps, so you can pick up your projects wherever you are and keep creating with ease.

Creating Content with Spark

With Spark, possibilities are virtually endless! In this section, we round up a set of short and easy to follow videos to help you get started creating popular content for nonprofits.

Make a Web Story 

Make & Size a Graphic for Social Media

Make an "About My Work" Video 

Begin an Annual Report with a Video 

Would you like to learn more about all you can do with Spark? We recommend this two-part in-depth exploration by Paul Trani called Getting Started in Adobe Spark (part one; part two).

The Spark blog and template pages are also great starting places for getting inspired and learning from design experts and community members alike on how to create stand-out visuals and inspiring stories. The blog features helpful columns that range from Design Principles to Content & Social Marketing and more. On it, you will find tips, case studies, guides and news. On the template page, if you browse by category (e.g., infographics, brochure or press kit) you will have access to a dedicated page with step-by-step tips on how to create your very own content, or you can scroll through the many ready-to-edit template previews on the page to jump right in. If you are an educator, Spark also offers a dedicated page with resources on how to engage students, drive creativity in the classroom, and create effective educational content.

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Is your nonprofit looking to incorporate more graphic design into its outreach? Has your organization used Spark yet to create content? Leave us a comment below to show us your creations!