I saw a Video creators "what's in my bag" video the other day. (Peter McKinnon) And it inspired me to talk about some of the things that I have in my digital bag of tricks. So here are some of the apps and tools that I use for creative projects.
First one out of the bag is Sketch. My current main open app, most days. It's fast, straight-forward and vector-based. "Fast" as in 48 colored artboards with gradients, photos, and nested symbols. I once had a client ask for a prototype to be done all in Photoshop and I nearly threw my laptop out the window. Sketch is for all my app wireframes, app prototypes, website designs, and icons.
My go-to for photo processing. When I get back after taking 700+ RAW photos, Lightroom helps me sift through them all and find the gems. I can save all my favorite presets which is great to keep my looks separate for my recurring clients. I like classic because (as of right now) Lightroom CC is too stripped down of all the tools I use constantly.
Any of my animations, motion slides, and moving UI designs are always done in After Effects. Great for explainer videos, and it has an awesome community to learn new techniques and plug-ins that make incredible effects and faster workflows. I am the kind of person who enjoys looking at 100 layers with tons of keyframes. (At least until that stray keyframe makes the animation look like a bunch of Mexican jumping bean.)
Vectors are 100% necessary for any work that needs constant variation in design sizes. And Illustrator is my go-to for vector work. There's nothing more painful than stretching a logo for a billboard or poster that is pixelated. Illustrator is my tool of choice for logo design, shirt design, digitizing hand-lettering, and anything that needs shapes created with the pen tool.
This was my gateway drug for design. The idea of layers and masks for a non-destructive workflow changed my life. (I have a rant for people who use the eraser tool, but that's for another time) It has definitely evolved from its initial purpose of being just a photo editor. I use it for creating lifestyle mockups, print materials with a lot of photo imagery, and working with rasterized assets.
I started out editing videos in iMovie for my church youth group. When I graduated to the big time with Premiere things got serious. Premiere is where all of the graphics, animations, audio, music, and footage come together to tell great stories. I use Premiere for all my Short film, Youtube videos, and IG stories.
Bonus: Procreate (iPad App)
All tho it's not a computer app. All of my blog post doodles are done with Procreate and an apple pencil. I also use it to do fun sketch notes during meetings. I use procreate mostly for sketching, quick app wireframes, design mockups, and drawing my toons.
Thanks for checking out what I have in my tool bag. If you have any other question about the tools I use. You can find me on most social media @isaacmdt.
See you later beautiful nerds.