How to Use Adobe Photoshop to Spruce Up Your Resume | Skillshare Projects

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How to Use Adobe Photoshop to Spruce Up Your Resume

When you want a dream job at an innovative, creative workplace, it’s important to update and upgrade your resume. However, it may be difficult to make sure you’re your resume stands out from all the others. In this guide, you will get some valuable design tips on how to use Adobe Photoshop to overhaul the layout, format, and design of your resume. 

This tutorial is useful for anyone from the analytical business person to the artist who can't keep their pen off the paper. 

Use the Standard Page Size 

This might not be the most exciting part of designing a resume, but it’s one of the most essential. Page size may make the difference between a resume that gets discarded and one that gets passed around the corporate office. If your resume is too large, the employer may not be able to fit it in a scanner or photocopier. If it’s too small, it won’t look good when copied onto a standard sheet of paper. When designing a resume in Photoshop, ensure that the canvas or document is set to an accepted page size, such as Letter (for those in the US) or A4 (for those in Australia or Europe). 

Use Columns to Maximize Space 

When employers are tasked with wading through dozens of resumes, they tend to groan over those that are more than a page long. While you may be tempted to go into lengthy detail about a training course you took a decade ago, it’s not necessary; all the employer wants to find out is how the qualification relates to the position.  

The best tip for assembling resume content is to keep it brief and to the point by editing out details and qualifications that don’t fit the role. While most basic Photoshop tutorials don’t cover it, editing text down to one page is worthwhile. When you do this, your resume will appear organized and concise while highlighting the best things about yourself. 

Consider placing shorter information sections, such as skills, software competencies, Photoshop classes, and contact details in columns. Switch up the columns’ background colors to add visual distinction. More detailed information, such as education, qualifications, and job experience, should go in wider columns. This maximizes the space available in a creatively laid-out resume. 

Consider the Layout Structure 

Although it may seem dull, organization is crucial to the successful design of your resume. Once content has been pared down to a single page, it should be separated into easily digestible chunks. With the right Adobe Photoshop tutorials, you can learn how to use grid structures, columns, rows, white space, and visual dividers to section the data they’re presenting to readers. This also makes it easier to refer to individual pieces of information during a job interview. A creative resume should be pleasurable to read, and keeping information organized will help you achieve that goal. 

Use Resume Infographics to Catch the Reader’s Eye 

Infographics are an excellent way to give a resume a unique look while remaining professional and data-driven. In most Photoshop classes, you would be instructed to divide the layout into a grid with four to five rows and two columns. Concentrate on putting a data section into each grid square, whether it’s the worker’s educational history or list of industry accolades. Use infographic-style resume templates and Photoshop shape tools to transform the blocks of data into easy-to-read infographics. A final tip: Keep colors minimal, neutral, and scaled-back. With the use of various graphic elements, it’s important to keep the resume’s design extremely professional. 

Give a Nod to the Industry 

Most people submit resumes when they’re looking for a certain role that maximizes the use of their skills. If this applies to you, it’s possible to use the information in basic Photoshop tutorials to give a “tip of the hat” to your chosen profession. For instance, if you’re a publishing designer, you should make your resume look a bit bookish. Use classic fonts and structure the resume’s layout to resemble a well-typeset book page. If you’re a web designer, you can take inspiration from your work by incorporating neon colors, data-style icons, and a clean-cut, precise layout. When you use your resume as a chance to display your design skills, that resume becomes a strong talking point during the interview process. 

Keep Things Simple 

You don't have to re-invent the wheel. Keep it simple and learn from lessons in the past, or lessons from other designers. So far in this tutorial on how to use Adobe Photoshop to brighten up a resume, you have learned how to use colors, infographics, and grids, but now it’s time to discuss simple, minimal design. Maybe the role is an administrative one, or the company isn’t a startup, but a formal, established enterprise. Here, a more pared-down resume design would be appropriate. At the least, this means no cropped, colorful images, no graphics, and no bright colors. 

Choose a sans-serif font and keep the resume’s structure conventional. Type should align to the left, and white spaces should be used to make the design look professional and uncluttered. Use Photoshop’s Stroke Tools to divide content into manageable sections and use colors sparingly. 

Use the Resume to Increase Personal Branding 

If you’re sending a cover letter, resume, and portfolio to apply for a creative role, it’s important to think of ways to make the application look more professional and unified. Treating a job application as a branding effort is a good way to take that application to the next level while proving to a potential employer that it’s possible to be creative while working within certain parameters. Before starting, however, you should set some rules for your personal brand. 

  • Consider creating a personal logo that includes your initials and a simple border. Apply the logo to the cover page of all documents. 
  • Think of how typeface consistency and text formatting affect your brand. 
  • Set guidelines for header, sub-heading and body text formatting. 

Use the information found in other Adobe Photoshop tutorials to learn how to create a color palette and save it as a swatch library, for consistency throughout application documents. To take your branding effort to a higher level, consider designing your portfolio website to match the brand’s look, as the cohesiveness won’t be lost on the employer when they check you out online. 

Personalize It 

It’s quite challenging to make your resume look memorable and presentable at the same time. After all, you won’t even make it to the interview phase if your resume is forgettable. To make an impression, you’ll have to think of ways to put their personalities into your resume. This may be accomplished by sharing your interests and hobbies, or by presenting a brief biography in a unique way. In design terms, however, there are two easy ways to personalize your resume. 

  • Signing the document is intimate and personal, and it makes a nod to convention in the digital age. If your signature is messy, however, you can use a handwritten typeface instead. 
  • Including a professional photo will help employers put a face with a name. Use Photoshop to apply a black and white layer to your color photo for an extra businesslike touch. 

Go Digital 

While printed resumes have an old-time appeal, and many companies assume that they’ll be receiving printed applications, sometimes it’s acceptable to push the envelope a little. For example, if you’re vying for a designer’s role at a startup company, you should be able to show the employer that you can think outside the box. Many startups have a tech-centric philosophy, which gives you the ideal opportunity to showcase your design skills, even if they feel like the basics. By moving your resume onto digital media, you’ll incorporate interactive content and make the materials easier for employers to access.  

Balance Professionalism and Creativity 

In this tutorial, you’ve gained a few tips on giving your resume a refresh. However, we’ve saved the most important tip for last; it’s incredibly important to strike a balance between professionalism and creativity in a resume design. Unlike other printed items, such as posters and flyers, resumes must be slightly more understated.  

Before an employer meets you in person, they will have already made judgments on your professional capabilities and personality based on the appearance of your resume. Therefore, you should ensure that those first impressions are as good as possible, which will increase their chances of making it to the interview phase. 

Selecting a legible, elegant typeface and using Photoshop to set it properly on the page will have a greater impact than a resume layout that’s chock-full of bright colors, gradients, and funky fonts. You can show your creative side in a subtler way by proving that you know there’s a time and place for experimentation. For many jobs, the resume phase is not the place to do it. Shift away from loading your resume with effects and focus on how to improve readers’ overall opinion of your application. 

A Few Closing Words 

Structuring a resume’s content, developing your personal brand, or moving your resume into the digital realm proves to prospective employers that you can solve problems and offer information in a skillful, yet memorable way.

By balancing professional design and creative presentation - no matter if you're a secretary or if you draw the human figure for a living, it’s impossible to go wrong. Keep coming back for more Photoshop tips, tricks, and advice. 

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