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Elder David A. Bednar recently spoke at Education Week about the Church and social media. I love Elder Bednar's challenge to #sharegoodness throughout the world with social media and the idea that we can all be 5 minute missionaries. If you need more ideas and helps, there is a church webpage called Share Goodness that has lots of great helps and guidelines. It covers a lot of FAQ and even suggest some great hashtags (#) to get you started.
One of the questions I have been getting is how do you make quick and easy pretty quotes like the ones I share on Instagram. It's actually easier than you might think. I mainly stick to two programs: PicMonkey and Canva. In this post I'll show you how easy it is to use PicMonkey, the one I use most often. Both of these programs have free and paid versions so you can decide what's best for you.
How to Use PicMonkey to Make Uplifting Messages
I love how easy PicMonkey is to use and they are constantly adding new features.
This is what the homepage of PicMonkey looks like. The bottom has useful information about new features they have added or even new how-to videos. If you want to learn more, it's a great place to start. Otherwise, click on one of the buttons at the top: Edit, Touch Up, Design, and Collage.
- Design lets you create an image according to the size you want or use one of the popular sizes. There is a great chart of all the sizes on social media sizes at Constant Contact.
- Collage is great when you want more than one picture. After you add the pictures, you can go to editing mode and spruce it up more.
- If you only want to do a quick fix of a picture with people in it, Touch Up is a good option.
- Edit will take you right to the main page to start editing your picture.
I recommend starting with Design. The square is perfect if you are planning on using Instagram. For posters, I prefer the 8 X 10 size.
I mentioned earlier that PicMonkey has a free version and a paid version. You'll see everything available, however. Anything with a crown is for the paid version only. There is still plenty you can use without it though. and you can also upload your own clipart.
See the button that has two squares on top of each other and another pointing down? That merges all your objects as one. This comes in handy if you are making a detailed background. Once you are done with the background, merge it as one. That way when you are adding text, you won't accidentally click on a background element and mess things up.
My biggest piece of advice is to play around with all the tools until you are familiar with everything. On the home page, PicMonkey even has some pictures that you can use as you experiment. Above, I explain what each button does. When I'm making holiday posters, the theme packages come in handy. One theme will have effects, backgrounds, fonts, clipart, etc. that go well together. You can often find different clipart in the theme packages too like reindeer and gifts in the Christmas theme.
Adding Text and Colors
When adding text, you can choose one of the many fonts that PicMonkey has available or use some of your own. There are lots of font websites out there if you have the time to go through them all! Or search fonts on Pinterest for a quick glance at some favorites. Each object you add will come with an editing toolbox. You can change colors, sizes, flip it, fade it, and more with the toolbox. There are 3 ways to pick a color:
- Click on the color chart until you find a color you want.
- Click on the thin grayish rectangle next to the color chart. This will bring up an eyedropper. The eyedropper lets you pick a color on the screen that you want. Simply click on the color you like with the eyedropper and it'll turn that color. This comes in handy when you are matching colors on your poster.
- Have a specific color in mind? You can type the number in. Don't know the number? Add the image then use the eyedropper to get it.
How do you decide which colors to use?
I use Design Seed. It has lots of great color combos which makes it easy for you to combine elements that flow together. I open two browser windows when using Design Seed. First, erase the numbers the in your toolbox so you can write in the new numbers. Then hover over the color you want from the right sidebar of the palette. The color number will pop up and you can type in the number. Design Seed adds new pictures and palettes everyday so there is always something new and fun to try.
Clipart and Photos
To add clipart, click on the one you want, size it, and change the colors. You can add your own clipart that you find but make sure you are following the copyright rules! Using Google image search is not the way to go about it. A lot of those images are copyrighted! Find all kinds of free images to use at Pixabay instead. Flickr is also great if you are searching for free photos. Search by your keywords than under license click creative commons only. Be sure to follow the rules for each photo as they differ by user. Most require at least a photo credit.
If you right click on an object, you have more editing options like duplicating an object. My favorite one is Straighten. I'm always flipping things on their sides so I use the Straighten feature a lot.
Looking to get a bit more creative with your quotes? Try the Effects section. Above I used Urbane. Play around with the intensity of each effect. If you are sharing online, make it as colorful as you want. If you are going to share it for printing, consider how much ink it is going to take.
Tagging Your Work
Last but not least, let's talk about tagging your pictures. I put my logo (that I made in PicMonkey with a transparent background- under Canvas Colors) on my posters so that if someone finds it elsewhere, they know where to go to get their own copy. You may consider tagging it if you don't want people stealing your quotes and claiming them as their own. I don't mind if people share mine as long as they give credit. You can mark your photos with a simple logo or create a watermark. Watermarking is easy. Open your logo up in the image section and either fade it until you like it or use the Overlay button on the toolbox.
Saving and Sharing
Finally, save or share your final product. If you hit the Share button, you don't need to save it, you can share it right away. If you save it, you will see the page above. You can change the dimensions if you need to and adjust the quality of the picture. I keep mine at Pierce. I change the dimensions down to 600 when I'm posting a picture on my blog because it helps with load time. However, the final product, I keep at full dimensions for better print quality. If the Save button isn't working right, try downloading it instead. Remember where you save it though! I like to save one copy to a cloud drive so I can share it on any social media platform anytime. Here's my final product (click to print without the tag):
Your Turn- How will you be using PicMonkey to share goodness?