Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Making Your Own Graphics with PicMonkey

I have enjoyed using PicMonkey.com for a while now.  It is how I make all of the graphics on my blog, Lost in Books.  I cannot remember which bloggers recommended it to me, but I know it was three or four, and most likely Tasha and Tif were among them.  Once I began to play around with making my own graphics, I had to agree it was free, simple, and looked good!

If you are not familiar with PicMonkey, allow me to show you the different ways you can create graphics for your blog and adjust photographs.

Just click in the upper left corner to Edit a Photo.  Choose any photo or background that you have saved to your computer.



I uploaded a plain blue background.



Then I added text by clicking on the P in the column on the left side of the page.  I chose a font, in this case, Quicksand, and clicked the ADD TEXT button at the top of the list.  


You can choose from a wide variety of fonts, text size, placement, color, etc. to create as simplistic or as complex a text graphic that you desire.


Sorry it's so hard to see. 

You can play around with fonts and colors and can do this on more than plain backgrounds to create all kinds of fancy buttons like this one I made for the Cover Discover feature on my blog:




Or this one I made for my What Do You Think? Discussions:



Now the tools PicMonkey has are even more numerous when a picture is involved.  To demonstrate the various tools you can utilize for pictures, I uploaded a photo of a sexy, sexy woman: Me ;) 



You can crop and resize, of course.  Standard photo stuff.




Then there is being rotated



or textured

What I call the "you fell asleep against a door screen" effect.

or perhaps softened, though I did go a teeny bit overboard on that.
.


I even "Zombied" myself.  Pardon the blood left over on my mouth...

Yum...flesh...

This is me getting a free, instant tooth whitening thanks to a tiny PicMonkey brush.  If only it were that free and instant in real life!




This is me with writing and an overlay (the heart).

How everyone (obviously) feels about me. ;)

Don’t get the wrong idea.  You don’t have to stick to just one trick.  This time I have given myself a sepia effect and tooth whitening while adding text onto a Polaroid-type frame! 



There are all kinds of possibilities on PicMonkey including collages!



So get out there and be your blog's own designer!  Design your headers and your blog buttons, design buttons for reading challenges you created, fix up pictures of people or books or people reading books---the opportunities are endless!  And while there are upgrade options on PicMonkey, the best part is everything I showed up (plus more!) is absolutely 100% free.  (Now that's my kind of site!)



Continue the discussion:
-Have you ever used PicMonkey?  What are your experiences with it?
-If you’ve never used PicMonkey or a similar site, did this article help?

14 comments :

  1. I've used PicMonkey for collages before, and really like it. I might try some other editing with it soon! I usually use Paint.NET (whose web address is actually getpaint.net)

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    1. I haven't checked out Paint.net before, Monika. I will go and look into it!

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  2. PicMonkey is great for basic photo editing; I still use it when I just need to resize or crop something quickly.

    If you want to use the advance features on PicMonkey (layering, dodging, etc.) you don't have to buy a premium membership. GIMP (http://www.gimp.org/) has them for free. On the downside, GIMP's interface is confusing and there's a definite learning curve. There's also Pixelmator, which is only available for Mac but has all the features of Photoshop, an intuitive interface, and costs $14.

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  3. PS-your blog buttons look awesome, Becca!

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  4. PicMonkey is my jam for quick bloggy stuff, especially cover collages! My blog theme automatically stretches any images I use, so I often have to either find a high res photo or use a collage, so PicMonkey has been great.

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  5. I honestly don't know if I have ever used PicMonkey, but it does look familiar. These days I have been leaning more towards using a lot of my own photos and editing them with Picasa (another free tool). I have even been known to do some buttons in Word!! It kind of depends on my mood. I will be (re)visiting PicMonkey though, to at least zombify myself! Who doesn't want to do that?!? :)

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    1. I'm not smart enough to use Word to make graphics lol

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    2. There's a way to vampirize yourself, too!

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  6. I have never heard of PicMonkey, but I will definitely be checking it out! Thanks for the tutorial :)

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  7. I absolutely love PicMonkey and am thankful to the last full Bloggiesta for having so many people recommend it then!!!

    -Rebecca @ Love at First Book

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