Stepping out of my comfort zone – designing interactive pdfs

Recently, I was asked by a London PR firm if I could design and create interactive pdfs for a pharmaceutical client of theirs. I obviously am used to creating pdfs but when it comes to interactive ones, I hadn’t really got a clue! I thought about it for all of about 5 second and said yes I could do it – I knew I’d be able to for a few reasons:

Mike (a full stack developer) can build anything from websites and apps to interactive games and bespoke SaaS systems – I had good backup if I got stuck – he would find interactive pdfs a doddle.

I know Adobe products really well – I’ve been using PhotoShop for over a decade – I find them easy to use and don’t take me too long to learn (I learned InDesign in a similar way a few years ago).

It was a well paid job – even if it took longer to do than I anticipated it still didn’t matter.

I like a challenge.

The design of the interactive pdfs was simple – I had been presented with the content in a non-designed interactive way – this was brilliant as quite often the client doesn’t quite know what they needed. It did mean I didn’t have to do the UI for once but it meant the tight deadline would get met. I listened to the brief and created simple designs for each type of page for the interactive pdf – for example menu and content pages. As predicted, Mike did need to help me a bit with the interactivity and there were a few hiccups along the way – for instance a couple of things the client wanted just wasn’t possible (or may have been if we’d had another week to figure it out!). I met the tight deadline and I was pleased I had another thing to add to ‘design products I can create’.

Unfortunately, the pharamaceutical interactive pdf is under strict NDA so I cannot show the work, but if you are looking for a uk based freelance designer to create some interactive pdfs, you know who to ask!




Leave a Reply