How do I make a resume with InDesign

How to design a creative resume

What you are going to create

If you are looking for your next job and urgently need to update your resume or résumé, this tutorial is perfect for you.

This tutorial will teach you how to put some creative resume tips into practice and design a resume that will work in a number of different creative areas. This minimal Adobe InDesign template is extremely versatile - you can mix and match colors and fonts for an even more unique look.

Are you ready to win this dream job? Great! Let's begin…

1. Set up the template in Adobe InDesign

You will need access to Adobe InDesign for this tutorial. To edit a few graphics, we'll also switch to Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Photoshop, but these are optional extras. The curriculum vitae will be set up in A4 format (210 mm x 297 mm). However, you can resize the template to a different size.

Step 1

Open Adobe InDesign and go to File> New> Document.

Uncheck the box next to Opposite pages and keep that Page number than 1

Of the Page size Select the drop-down menu A4; or put that width to 210 mm and the height to 297 mm.

step 2

Set that up Margins on all sides too 12 mm. Add a Blossoms To set the whole page around, set this option on 3 mm on all sides.

click OK to create a new document.

step 3

The résumé has a simple two-column structure, but the columns are not equally wide. So use guidelines to mark the columns. This gives us more flexibility.

Make sure the rulers are visible (View> Show Rulers)Then click the left ruler and drag a guide on the page. Drag it over until you reach it X position 76 mm.

Pull out a second guide 86.5 mm, and then pull out another manual 142 mm.

These guides mark two irregularly large columns with a gutter between them. The 142 mm Leadership marks the center of the right column.

Step 4

Click in the ruler at the top of the screen and drag a horizontal guide on the page Y position 63 mm. This marks the base of the header bar, which we will focus on in the next stage of the tutorial.

2. Add color

CVs don't have to be bleak. Add a touch of color to your resume and you are sure to catch the eye of a creative employer.

Step 1

Of the Tools Select the panel Rectangle tool (M) and drag across the entire page to the edges of the bleed on all sides.

Extend the Swatches Panel (Window> Color> Swatches) and choose New swatch from the control panel drop-down menu.

Set up the values C = 1 M = 1 Y = 1 K = 0, click Add and then OK.

Set that up Fill color the rectangle shape you just created for this new natural colored swatch.

Extend the layers Panel (Window> Layers) and double click on the Layer 1 Surname. Rename the layerBackground color and click on OK.

step 2

Close that Background color Click in the empty field to the left of the name of the layer in the layer layers Panel.

Click on that Create a new layer Button on the bottom right layers Panel. Rename the new layer Colored bars and click on OK.

Of the Swatches Create another new CMYK swatch, this time with the values C = 69 M = 60 Y = 56 K = 66. click Add, and OK.

Take the Rectangle tool (M) and drag across the page to create a rectangle 216 mm in the width and 51 mm in the height. Place the top edge of the shape against the top edge, the base on the horizontal guide, and center it on the page.

Set that up To fill from the shape to your new black and black color swatch.

step 3

Go back to Swatches Panel and create a new CMYK swatch. Set up the values C = 22 M = 7 Y = 19 K = 0to create a mint green color. click Add and OK.

Take that again Rectangle tool (M) and drag to create a tall shape 64 mm in the width and 303 mm in the height. Position yourself on the left side of the page and support the right edge on one of the vertical guides and the left edge on the left edge.

3. Say cheese!

Photos on résumés can have a bad rap - are they professional enough? Are they actually pushing employers back?

I would argue that photos, when done well, can make a resume more memorable, easier to use, and ultimately help the employer visualize you as a person, not just as a paper.

However, there are two golden rules to including photos on your resume. You need to adhere to this if you want your portrait to look professional and not inappropriately.

First-, No way Just cut out a Facebook photo and drop it there. It just looks amateurish and sloppy. Instead, add a simple fit photo that only shows your head and shoulders. Better yet, hire a professional photographer. A professional will put you at ease and get natural looking but shiny results.

The second golden rule is to choose a photo in black and white. Black and white photos look more elegant and professional and don't distract from the content of your resume.

Step 1

To convert a color photo to black and white, open it in Adobe Photoshop. Feel free to choose a less intense pose for your own photo. A smile can come your way and it means you are a great team player!

Duplicate the background Layer to make a copy of the photo.

Apply one Black and white adjustment Level from the options available at the bottom of the window layers Panel. You can toggle that properties of the effect from the window that opens.

If you are satisfied with the result, File> Save the image, ready to be imported into your resume design.

step 2

Return to InDesign and on your resume document.

By doing layers lock that Colored bars Level and create a new level. Name this asphoto.

Choose Ellipse frame tool of the Tools Hold down panel and shift, Drag to create a perfect circular frame, 42 mm In diameter.

Position the frame in the center of the top edge of the mint green bar and overlap the bar behind it as shown below.

Open that stroke Panel (Window> dash). Set that up Stroke weight to 1 point. Adjust the Line color of the circular frame (from the Swatches Panel) to [Paper].

step 3

Go to with the frame selected with the mouse File> Place. Select your prepared photo and click to open.

Adjust the size of the photo in the frame by either double-clicking and holding in the frame shift while resizing or by clicking Fill in the frame proportionally Button off the Controls at the top of the work area.

4. Personalize your resume with a logo

Personal branding is a great way to make your applications more memorable and special, and it also shows your future employer that you work with great attention to detail.

You can "tag" your resume with a simple logo and apply a signature style header to the layout to add even more personality to the design.

Let's start with the signature header ...

Step 1

We use three fonts for resume design (although you are welcome to tweak these to your own fonts if you prefer). Each font has its own purpose in layout. Download and install the following fonts:

  • A script-style font for the header and logo: Halo hand letter
  • A sans serif font for subheadings: Open sans
  • A classic serif font for body text: Adobe Caslon Pro (This should be pre-installed with Adobe InDesign)

step 2

Go back to layers and lock the photo Layer. Create a new layer and rename it logo.

Take the Writing tool (T) and drag on the top of the page to create a long text frame. Position the text frame in the middle of the right column at the top of the black bar.

Art 'Your name' and put that font to Halo hand letter, size 35 pt, alignment center and put that Font color to [Paper]. You can edit advanced type settings from the option character Panel (Window> Type & Tables> Characters).

step 3

Create a second text frame with Writing tool (T) and put it under the first frame.

Art 'Your job' and put that font to Open Sans Regular, size 10 pt, tracking to 250 and Arrange in the center. Set that up Font color to [Paper].

Use the Line tool (\) and hold shift How to create a straight horizontal separator between the two text frames. Set that up Line color to the mint green color field, C = 22 M = 7 Y = 19 K = 0, and the Stroke weight to 0.35 pt.

Step 4

Move over to the pasteboard next to the resume document. Take the Ellipse Tool (L) and hold shift as you drag to create a circle 18 mm In diameter.

Set that up Fill color to [None] and Line color embossing green, C = 22 M = 7 Y = 19 K = 0. Set that up Stroke weight to 1 point.

Choose Writing tool (T) Click the circle shape to convert it to a text frame. Enter your initials in the frame and set them font to Halo Handletter Regular, size 26 pt, alignment center, and Font color to emboss green, C = 22 M = 7 Y = 19 K = 0.

Select the circular text frame with Select tool (V, alignment) Cursor and go to Object> Text Frame Options. Adjust the Inset spacing to 2.5 mm to center the text nicely in the frame. click OK.

Step 5

To make your logo easy to edit, you'll want to convert it to a vector format. To do this, just drag your mouse over the text frame you created and go to Edit> Copy.

Open Adobe Illustrator. Create a new document and go to Edit> Paste. Then go to File> Save As. Choose Illustrator EPS (eps) of the format Drop down menu and click save up

You now have an editable logo file that you can place as an image on your resume (or for use on other media such as letterhead and business cards).

Return to InDesign and create a frame with the Rectangular Frame Tool (F). Go to File> Place, Choose your EPS logo and to open. Position over the name text frame as shown.

5. Format the content of your resume

Great work so far - you've created a basic layout with color and photo, plus a signature style header and logo to add a personal touch to your resume.

Now we can start editing and formatting the content of your resume. If you want to limit your resume to just one page (which is highly recommended), you need to be very careful about what to include on the layout.

See the final resume layout. In the left column we have Competencies, education, I am in love… (Hobbies / interests) and Contact Details.

This is arguably the most important piece of information about the resume and what is most immediately useful to the reader. Make sure your name, skills, qualifications, and contact details are really easy to see. They come in handy when the reader wants to discuss your resume with a colleague or with you during the interview phase.

In the right column we have About me (Bio) followed by work experience And finally, a quirky little note that tells you how you'd really like to work for this company.

Now let's put these sections together.

Step 1

Go back to layers and lock the logo Layer. Create one final new layer and rename it typography.

First, let's create a subheading style to use throughout the resume.

Take the Writing tool (T) and drag on the page to create a text frame 51 mm in the width and 9 mm in the height.

Set that up Fill color to the black and white color field you created previously, C = 69 M = 60 Y = 56 K = 66

Go to Object> Corner Options. Set that up size from all corners to 1 mm and the Shape to commitment. click OK.

step 2

Position the text frame at the top of the mint green column.

Art 'Competencies' in the text frame and put that font to Open Sans Regular, size 10.5 pt, tracking to 300 and Font color to [Paper].

Go to Object> Text Frame Options and put that commitment to 3 mm.

step 3

Select the text frame you just created and Edit> Copy.

Edit> Paste Position the inserted subheadings three times the length of the green pepper column to make sure they are centered and aligned. Leave a little more space under both 'Competencies' and the second subheading.

Adjust the headings to be read 'Education', 'I am in love… ' and 'Contact'.

Edit> Paste again to create another sub-heading. Set the frame Fill color embossing green, C = 22 M = 7 Y = 19 K = 0, and expand the width of the frame too 111 mm.

Position on the right side of the page, perfectly aligned with the 'Competencies' Subheading Use the guidelines to center the subheading.

Customize the text to be read 'About me'.

Select the text frame and Edit> Copy, Edit> Paste. Move it just below the original subheading, aligned with the 'Education' Heading. Customize the text to be read 'Work experience'.

Step 4

Create a new text frame that fits in the space between 'Competencies' and 'Education' Subheadings.

Fill in your skills, give a line to each skill, and set that down font to Open Sans Semibold, Size 10.5 pt, Leading 21 pt, Tracking 150, All Caps, Align Center and Font color to C = 69 M = 60 Y = 56 K = 66.

Step 5

Move the green column down and format the text in a similar way. To use Open sans for the title of the qualification (under 'Education'), Email and phone (at 'Contact') and use Adobe Caslon Pro for the names of the universities, the years of study, the e-mail address and the telephone number.

Use the Line tool (\) Create separator lines to separate information in a section of the column.

Step 6

In the right column you use Adobe Caslon Pro to format the text below 'About me' and for a description of your previous jobs.Set the title of the jobs in Open sans, and use a dividing line to separate each role.

Step 7

Go back to the left column and enlarge the section with the heading 'I am in love… '. Hobbies and interests are a great way to add personality to your resume.

Select two interests you want to share on resume and enter them Open sans.

Go over to flaticon.comHere you can choose from a large selection of free icon designs. Find two icons that represent your interests and download the icon EPS Versions of the file (which have a transparent background).

Open one of the icons in Adobe Illustrator. Select the picture and go to Edit> Copy.

Return to InDesign and Edit> Paste drop into the symbol. The image is now fully editable so you can resize it and then adjust the image Fill color to [Paper].

Repeat the process by inserting a second symbol and positioning it over the text describing the relevant interest.

Step 8

Now for a final, special note on your résumé.

Zoom in on the bottom right of the page and create a new text frame using Writing tool (T). Enter a final note to your (potential) future employer. something like 'P.S. I really would love to work for you! '

Set that up font to Halo hand letter, size 23 pt, alignment center and use your existing color palette to format the Font color.


And you are done! Fantastic work!

Your resume is complete and looks great. All that remains is to do File> Export it too Adobe PDF (print) (for distribution in paper form) or Interactive PDF (for digital sharing).

If you want to give the resume a slightly different look, it's very easy to change the colors by unlocking the color Background color and Colored bars Layers.

Experiment with different color combinations like black and yellow or turquoise and gray.

In this tutorial, we've covered a number of useful and versatile resume and resume writing skills. You now know how to:

  • Set up a two column resume template in Adobe InDesign
  • Apply color and photos accordingly and in a professional, minimal way on your resume
  • Create a "personal brand" for your resume, including signature head and logo
  • Use three different fonts to create a professional yet creative typographic style

I'll be sharing a few tips soon for creating effective, memorable résumés. Or check out the wide range of resume templates on GraphicRiver.