on 1 December 2005
Having been using Quarkxpress since 1989 I decided (okay - more like forced) to switch to InDesign and although it doesn't take long to get up and running in a basic sort of way, there were certainly some unfamiliar things about InDesign that I needed to grapple with fast (like style sheets). InDesign's online help is okay but doesn't show examples. So I just bought this book and wow! - it does exactly what I need like explain all the features a "switching" designer needs to get a grasp of quickly, and it does so very concisely with loads of real world examples and some really useful tips such as why making drop shadows in InDesign is sometimes better than doing them in Photoshop. If I have one quibble it's that some of the screen shots are a bit on the small side, but given that this book is packed to bursting with info and examples I can forgive it that. InDesign Essentials sits right next to my keyboard - if you've just made or are thinking of switching you really won't regret forking out for this book. Great stuff.
on 10 January 2006
At first glance I wasn't sure about this book. Since it's only 190 pages - short compared to some - and has a bright, colourful design, I expected one of those style-over-very-little-content numbers. Wrong on both counts. It's packed with useful info and tips - I've been using ID for some time, but found better and faster ways to do a couple of things the first day I had it on the desk. And after a month I have yet to catch it out on missing content - everything I've wanted info on has been there, and well-indexed too. The examples and illustrations are very clear and always pertinent, again, something I wouldn't say about the majority of manuals. By far the best I've seen of its type since Rick Altman's Corel books over ten years ago!