Kaetrena Davis Kendrick, M.S.L.S.
University of South Carolina Lancaster
After several years of curating Kpop music and performers, there’s one thing I’ve learned: Kpop fans and scholars at all levels are talking about and presenting on all aspects of Korean popular culture in academia – from high school to postgraduate work.
A quick online search shows that students use several different presentation and design tools to fulfill assignments (with Korean popular culture as the topic) in many courses, including digital media, linguistics, and economics. These tools are great for longer presentations, but sometimes, you just need something not so lengthy to support a short talk. Other times, you may want to augment a presentation and give your audience an impactful take-away that they can revisit and share quickly with others.
That’s where the infographic comes in. Techopedia defines infographic – and its use – as “a visual representation of a data set or instructive material. An infographic takes a large amount of information in text or numerical form and then condenses it into a combination of images and text, allowing viewers to quickly grasp the essential insights the data contains.” (2016)
News and media distributed via the Internet have increasingly used infographics to support content. Soompi, DramaFever, and more recently, My Music Taste have used the medium to distribute information about Kpop trends. You will also find many Kpop fans and culture bloggers using infographics to promote their favorite groups or Korean food and language.
There are many tools you can use to create infographics, from Piktochart to Easel.ly; however, Canva rises to the top of the list for a few reasons:
- It’s free (unlike Piktochart, which has a limited free version)
- In contrast to Easel.ly, lots of “turnkey” templates and other drag-and-drop design elements are available in Canva, which means
- There’s a low learning curve. A low learning curve means
- You can distribute your unique content more quickly
- If you need to collaborate on a design, you can easily share work with others to edit.
In addition to a lot of templates, Canva users also have broad color, font, photo, and icon choices. For those who want to be really fancy, for-cost design elements are just $1.00, and the cost isn’t applied until the final design is saved. Designs can be saved as images (.jpg or .png) or a document (.pdf). Users can also share their work on social media since Canva automatically invites users to tweet or post their work after a design has been saved.
I created this simple infographic featuring TVXQ’s Max (Shim Chang Min) in a matter of minutes (imagine all I could do with 30 minutes to an hour to spare!).
Canva also has lots of other uses – many users have created CD covers, website banners, postcards, and more using the tool. It’s easy to explore what other users are doing, too – users just click on the “Get design inspiration” link in their account dashboard to check out and comment on the latest designs in the Canva community.
Currently Canva is available for iPad for those who want to design on-the-go.
TIP: To get the most out of Canva, sign up using a .edu e-mail account.
Like it? Try Canva for Work, too!
Technopedia. (2016). What is an infographic?. Retrieved from https://www.techopedia.com/definition/27808/information-graphic-infographic
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