If you’re not all that creative or artistic, but want to produce documents that dazzle thanks to their eye-catching layouts, then Pages could be the answer. Alongside its word processing tools, the program has all the component parts you need to design an attractive document. What’s more, everything is iOS-optimised for touchscreen page creation. The software is great if you want to add some artistic touches to a visaually simple document, such as a letter or CV, but it’s even better at helping you produce striking designs for flyers, posters, party invitations and plenty more besides.
Central to the creation process is the ability to use images, tables, charts and shapes alongside the more traditional text formatting tools to produce documents that really stand out. For example, shapes can be resized and moved around the pages of your document with ease, and also styled to look visually appealing. Photos can be edited and combined with existing template designs, or added into a blank document for a truly one-off creation. In short, once the elements are on your page, the artistic possibilities are infinite.
Device: iPad/iPhone/iPod touch
Time required: 1 hour
What you need:
iOS 5.1 or later
Step 1: Draw it out
Simple shapes are easy to create or adapt in Pages – just choose an option from the drop-down menu. It’s also possible to draw a shape in an almost freehand fashion by selecting the single strip option. Once the shape is on the page, you’re then free to style it as needed.
Step 2: Style it up
Drag-and-drop simplicity can also be combined with the styling options offered up under the paintbrush menu at the top right-hand corner of the work area. This means you can add an element and then work it into the style of the document with just a few finger taps of the screen.
Step 3: Desktop Publishing
Sophisticated design options such as shadow and opacity settings can also be tweaked. With a little practice, you’ll soon find that Pages can do the same thing as many of the far pricier desktop publishing software packages, while also working perfectly in a relatively small design area.
Step 4: Mix and Match
You can speed up your design workflow by selecting multiple elements and moving them using a finger. Similarly, you can resize or reshape elements by dragging corners in and out. Use a simple two-finger twist motion to turn shapes around, and use Undo if you overdo it a touch.
Step 5: Make it easy
Using the supplied templates is a great way to get a head start with a decent design. Even picture boxes can be updated with images of your own. In fact, shapes, images and text elements can all be changed and formatted to produce the visual effect you’re after.
Step 6: Scratch built
Alternatively, create a blank document and then drag shapes and other design elements into the work area. Powerful fingertip control can be exercised over shapes, so it’s easy to produce a one-off design by utilising the basic options and then styling them.