Saturday, September 03, 2016

Review of Visme: Presentations, Photo Editing, Animations

I'm reviewing the free version of Visme ( because I stalled around and let my free trial to the premium version expire before I had time to really work with the program.

There are quite a few sources of presentation templates and infographic software, and many are free. So, how does one wade through and finally decide which one to use? I like the idea of using quite a few of them.  Just for fun, I thought I'd create a collage with a few photos that I took along with some of the shapes in the Visme library of free items.

In order to use the graphic, I had to save it and then download it. With the free version, I can download a jpg graphic. But, with the  premium, I can save it as the following file types: PNG, PDF, and HTML5.

Visme graphic I created using the free version and playing with Visme's shape library and a few photos I took in Mexico.
Visme offers infographics, but most come with the premium version. If I had the premium version of Visme, I might prefer it. But, at the moment, my favorite infographic cloud-based software program is Canva ( It is easy to use, and the built-in template give me endless inspiration and ideas. As with all infographics, planning is the most important part. What do you want to communicate? What is your message? Why do you need to communicate the message in infographic form? What are your advantages?

After you've determined what your purpose is and what you want your reader to do with the information (the famous "rhetorical situation"), you can start taking the next step.

Canva is great for infographics, and it also has presentations. But, so does Google slides. And, for that matter, PowerPoint's many online repositories can provide you with templates.

So where does Visme fit in?  To me, what makes Visme really special is what lies beneath the first slide -- in the depth and breadth of the presentation templates, and that they are very easy to animate.

They can also be connected to Screencast-o-matic for excellent and easy-to-make audio-accompanied screencasts.

But returning to Visme -- here are a few of the advantages: 
  1. Visme's tools are very professional and allow you customize more than you can with some of the other templates and interfaces
  2. The photo editor is very easy to use and powerful
  3. The font library is fun and very extensive
  4. The banners are perfect of quick construction of banner ads for placement on websites
  5. The simple charts and graphics within the infographics section are extensive. They're not free, though. 
How much does Visme cost?  Right now, there packages for free, $7 per month, and $15 per month. If you're a designer and you use Visme to build ads, etc. the price is certainly worth it.

I personally think that Visme would be a better solution if it also included a library of cut-out characters. It's really a pain to have to subscribe to five or six different services just to create the kinds of instructional or promotional materials that you want / need to create.

Here's a social media graphic (using the premium version) that I assembled using photos from Pawnee, Oklahoma, where a 5.6 earthquake in September 2016 impacted historical buildings, some much more than others.

That said (and all whining for a utopian solution aside), I like using Visme, and love the results. Here's just one experiment -- photos taken in Mexico and in downtown Tulsa on Cinco de Mayo 2016 at the Chihuahua races :) :)

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