It would be great to have a graphics artist on staff who could build the graphics you need for your elearning courses. But the reality for many of us is that’s not going to happen. So you’re left to fend for yourself.
In previous posts, I shared a lot about how to customize your clip art so that you have some flexibility when building your elearning courses in PowerPoint. In today’s post I want to expand on that a bit by showing you how you can use a single clip art style to create your basic elearning template.
Find a Style You Like
Look over the clip art that you have and locate a style that you like. For this post, I’m using Style 802. What I like about it is the hand drawn look and simplicity of the style. I also like that there’s a lot of variety.
A few things that I look for:
- Characters: What type of people, poses, and variations exist? I look for heads that can be removed and matched to other bodies. This way I can create the same character in multiple settings.
- Objects: What objects are available that I can pull out and use? I look for rectangular shapes that could become boards or pieces of paper. Computers are another hot item for elearning.
- Lines and shapes: Are there some shapes or lines that I can pull from the clip art and use in other places? Style 802 is a good example for this. The images have a hand drawn look. Adding a PowerPoint shape or line really stands out. So I want to find lines and other shapes I can pull from the clip art and apply elsewhere.
Play Around with Ideas
Try to build a template structure using elements from the clip art. For example, you probably need some content boxes. Perhaps you’ll want sections or menu options. You might even offer a little resource section with clickable icons.
You might also change up the look. Many times, the images are all sized the same way. Try something new. Make your images real big. Or, make them real small. Flip them. Crop them. Bring them in at different angles. Try bold colors. Make a comic book panel.
Once you start moving the images around, you might find some interesting layouts.
I created a quick mockup using the Style 802 clip art. Hopefully, it gives you some ideas for your next elearning course.
I also included the PowerPoint files so you can see what I did. Feel free to break them apart and build your own ideas. Download the PowerPoint files used in this post.
There’s a lot more that you can do with these clip art styles. Then main thing is to train your eyes to recognize usable shapes and lines, as well as which characters work.
Upcoming E-Learning Events
- May 22-24 (Atlanta). ATD International Conference & Expo. We'll be in booth 738. Swing by to chat.
- June 20-21 (San Diego). FocusOn Learning conference.
- Articulate Roadshows. Join us for one or two days of e-learning goodness. Day 1 focuses on more general type e-learning topics and Day 2 is centered on learning to build some nice, reusable interactions. Learn more and sign up using the links below. Seats are limited for the events. If you're interested in presenting at one of the roadshows, let me know.
- There are a couple of other events planned. Once we get all of the bookings confirmed, we'll add the registration page and info.
Free E-Learning Resources
Want to learn more? Check out these articles and free resources in the community.
Here’s a great job board for elearning, instructional design, and training jobs
Participate in the weekly elearning challenges to sharpen your skills
Lots of cool elearning examples to check out and find inspiration.