PicMonkey: Making a Graphic

Ready for another PicMonkey Tutorial? My last tutorial showed you what I do with all the images that I use on my blog, but today I’m going to show you how to make a graphic. Here are some examples of graphics that I’ve made:

picmonkey graphic 1

To do my demonstration at Healthy Living Summit, I created a new graphic so everyone would be able to see how it works, step by step. I’m going to show you how to create the same graphic today:

picmonkey example

To start, I create a white image and save this image to use over and over again when making different graphics in PicMonkey. I made mine from Paint, but you can also just save a blank word document.

Again, when you start you choose “Edit a photo” and open that blank white image.

picmonkey demonstration

picmonkey graphic 2

Next, I start with the background “stripes.” To make them, I started by opening the overlays and choosing a rectangle.

picmonkey graphic 3

You can then change the color and size of the “overlay” and move it around.

picmonkey graphic 4

Once I’ve made one stripe, I right click on the stripe and duplicate it so that they will all be the same size and color. Then, for this graphic, I chose to crop it a little smaller, using the crop function in basic edits.

picmonkey graphic 5

Once I have my background, I added text and changed the color of the text:

picmonkey graphic 6

Now, how did I add the PicMonkey icon? First you need to save the icon. I used the “snip tool” on my PC to save the image. Once you have it saved, click “Overlays” and then at the top choose “Your Own.” A box will pop up for you to look through your files to pic an image to use as an overlay. You don’t have to just use a graphic image, you can do anything, like a photograph, and add it on top of your PicMonkey creation.

picmonkey graphic 7

Next, your image will come up on the screen just like any of the other overlays. You can readjust the size, the color and tilt it. Another feature that I used is Fade. I faded the image so that it blended in and you could see the text and stripes underneath. You could also right click and “send to back” but I preferred how it changed the color of the stripes.

picmonkey graphic 8

Then you save, and tada!

picmonkey graphic 9

There are SO MANY things that you can make using the features on PicMonkey, this is just the tip of the iceburg. I really encourage you to just play around with it and you’ll come up with some creative ideas.

 

Do you have any other questions about PicMonkey (or anything)?

Do you make your own blog graphics?

PicMonkey Presentation ReCap

Hey everyone! I know I’ve made you all wait a while, but I finally have an overview of my PicMonkey presentation from Healthy Living Summit put together for you all! Since I only had 15 minutes to present, I decided to talk about the basics of PicMonkey and give people some ideas of what they can do for their personal photos as well as for their blogs.

Today I’m just going to share what I use PicMonkey the most for, and then we’ll move on to other topics on another day. It’s much harder to explain through a blog rather than showing it in person!

First, here are several examples of ways I’ve used PicMonkey:

examples of picmonkey

1. What’s Beautiful Under Armor Cover Page

2. Best Moments of 2012 Post

3. Picture of me and my sorority “twin”

4. HIIT Run image

5. Cover image for recipe

6. Quote over a picture

 

So what do I use PicMonkey the most for? Fixing images. Every time I open up an image in PicMonkey I do these two things:

1. Auto Adjust (or adjust it myself) and

2. Color Boost.

First, select your photo from your files to edit in PicMonkey. You can only edit one photo at a time, but you can have PicMonkeyopen in several tabs at the same time.

picmonkey demonstration

Next, choose auto-adjust. For about 80% of my pictures, auto-adjust improves the image.

picmonkey demonstration 1

Sometimes I dislike what auto-adjust does, so I either leave the image how it was, or adjust it myself.

picmonkey demonstration 2

picmonkey demonstration 3

The second thing that I often do to my photos is a color boost. For most, I move the strength very low, since warm colors are affected more greatly and look neon if you leave the strength too high.

picmonkey demonstration 4

I find this effect most helpful when it comes to landscape photos. You know how you look out at something beautiful, take a picture and then realize the picture just didn’t capture what you saw in real life? Well, it occurs all the time when I’m using my iPhone camera, so the color boost is a great tool to get the picture back to what you saw yourself.

picmonkey demonstration 6

It’s a slight change, but it makes a difference, especially when you knew how the colors originally looked.

So there you have it! I do this to almost all my blog pictures (unless I don’t have time) and to most of my personal pictures now as well.

My biggest piece of advice when using PicMonkey is to just play around with it and experiment with all of the options. There are so many things you can do! Next week I’ll do a demonstration on how to make graphics!

 

Do you ever adjust photos? What do you use?

Have you used PicMonkey?

Is there anything you want to know how to do? Anything blog-related! (or life related, I guess… haha).

PicMonkey’s New Features

Kaixo!

Yes, we’re back to international greetings… Anyone know where today’s comes from? Anyway, I hope you all had a great Monday! Well, if Mondays could be great?

So you all know I’m a huge fan of PicMonkey. If you missed them before, here are my previous PicMonkey tutorials:

PicMonkey Tutorial

Weekly Workouts Demystified

PicMonkey has come out with a lot of new features, including “spring” overlays as well as something that I’m really excited about: their new light effects!

I love the effects that PicMonkey has available, many of which I used in my “What’s in My Make Up Bag” post to make the images more fun. Sometimes they’re subtle, and other times not so much, but I love the artsy factor.

To find the new light effects, once you’ve opened a photo, click on the effects icon and then scroll down a bit until you see them:

s;dkljflwe

The five new effects are Bokeh, Radiance, Lens Flare, Sunglow and Spotlight. The best thing to do is just play around with them a bit to see what you like and when you might use it.

Here is an example of me messing around with a couple on a picture I took from Colorado.

First I used Bokeh. I changed the shape, and then also changed Blur to Glowy. After that I clicked on the paintbrush icon and chose to use the brush to remove the effect from the lower part of the picture, so that the effect was only in the sky.

piclight2

I also tried out the lens flare:

piclight3

And then I removed the glare and tried out sunglow, moving the sun down to the right side and lessening the size just a bit:

piclight4

See how these effects can make the picture look so much different? I’m really glad they added these, I think they’re a lot of fun.

When I first messed around with them, I used my favorite subject: MOLLY! Here are some of my favorites:

mollyangel

 

mollylove

 

mollysnowangel

 

mollyflare

Isn’t she beautiful? Haha love her. Please feel free to e-mail me or ask me questions in the comments if you’d like to know anything more about picmonkey, I love sharing and I’m a huge fan of the site!

 

Do you like to edit photos?

 

What’s your favorite subject to photograph?

 

 

Disclaimer: Picmonkey has not compensated me in any way, I share my knowledge of the site purely out of my own use and love for it!

Google Reader & Bloglovin’ Tutorial

Happy Friday!!!

I am soooo ready for a fun and relaxing weekend! I’ve got a couple plans, like brunch with my cousin and shopping with some friends, but other than that I’m looking forward to some relaxing and, per usual, a little school work and blog work thrown in.

When I mentioned a while back that I had switched over to Bloglovin’ from Google Reader, someone (okay, Linz) mentioned that she didn’t use either and didn’t understand them. I used them because I heard about them and took a little time to investigate, and I’m so glad I did because it makes blog reading so much more organized and I know I’m not missing anything I don’t want to miss.

Since I’ve used both systems, I thought I’d share a little tutorial for each so that if you don’t know how to use one or either, you can try it out!

 

Google Reader

First and foremost – to use Google reader you need a Gmail account. I’m a HUGE Gmail fan, especially since I also use Google calendar and Google drive.

When you have Google reader, here is what you might see on a daily basis:

reader 1

It usually shows you all your new items, either oldest to newest or vice versa. You click on one post title and it opens up the entire post in your Google reader (this is why you don’t give the blogger a page view). Not all blogs work this way, some only show a snippet and you have to click over to their blog.

reader 2

To subscribe to blogs in Google reader, you 1) click subscribe, 2) type (or copy paste) in the blog’s URL, and then 3) click Add. Tada! It usually then provides you with the 10 most recent posts from that blog.

reader 3

Once you’ve added a blog, you can also create groups of blogs to help organize them. To add a blog to a group, you click on Feed Settings and add from there. If you don’t want to read the post(s) then click “Mark as read.”

reader 4

It’s pretty simple and easy to use, especially if you’re already familiar with Google.

 

Bloglovin’

As I mentioned, I have recently switched over to Bloglovin’. It takes a little getting used to, but I’m glad I made the switch. Here is what you see when you open up Bloglovin’:

bloglovin 2

What I love about this, is that it gives you a preview and the first image from the post, and you can scroll down to see all the new posts that you haven’t read.

Another feature that I love is that you can install Bloglovin’ on you task bar, so that no matter what window you’re in, you click it and it opens up Bloglovin’ in another window.

bloglovin 1

Aaaaand, another great feature? When you click on a post to read it takes to you the post (they get a page view) but it also leaves a Bloglovin’ bar along the top. You can click on the menu and then click on the name of another un-read blog post, so you can switch from post to post without going back to the original Bloglovin’ page. This is SO CONVENIENT.

bloglovin 6

To subscribe to a blog in Bloglovin, you type in the blog’s name or URL in the search bar at the top of the page and click the search icon:

bloglovin 3

Then, it gives you either one blog, or a few different options if you just searched. When you have the blog you want to follow, click Follow!

bloglovin 4

When you’ve done that, it will then give you the option to add the blog to a group. For the first time, you create groups, but then once you have the established you just choose the group to add the blog to:

bloglovin 5

And there you go! Very simple.

A final note: if you’re making the switch from Google reader to Bloglovin’, there’s no easy way to transfer your blogs. I just separated my screens so I could see Google reader on one half and Bloglovin’ on the other and searched for each blog in Bloglovin’ that I followed in Google reader. It took about 20-30 minutes, but I followed a LOT of blogs…

Let me know if you all have any other questions, or if you’re interested in any other tutorial type posts, I love to share and help!

 

Do you use Google reader or Bloglovin’?

What’s a website that you find helpful in keeping you organized?

Weekly Workouts Demystified

Happy Monday! I know you are ALL excited for this Monday (unless you don’t live in the U.S…) because you have either a 2 or 3 day week before the holiday! I’m supposed to have a 3 day week because we technically have school Wednesday, but I always ignore that and take Wednesday off because my teachers always end up canceling class that day anyway. Turns out I have one teacher who insists on having class… hmmm guess I’m missing it! Good thing it’s only 50 min long though, not missing much.

On Friday I have you all an introduction to how to use Picmonkey, but many of you asked more questions about using PicMonkey, specifically how I make my weekly workout pages. These definitely take a little more creativity and effort, but I think you all can handle it! Let’s just hope I can explain it well…

We’ll start with this one:

workouts 11-5

First, you need a white background. I have NO IDEA how everyone else does this, but I made a blank paint document and saved it as “white” and re-use it every time.

image

Then I go to Picmonkey and upload it as an image:

image

Then I choose my background for each day of the week. For this I click on the overlays icon:

image

Then, for this particular week, I chose geometric shapes for my background. After picking a shape, I move it to where I want on the page, and then I choose a color.

lskdjfkl

I do the same for each day of the week, and then it’s time to add text! This is basically the same as geometric shapes, but you type in your text, adjust the size, then choose a font and a color:

image

And there you go! It’s pretty simple, but it takes a while to get the hang of it enough to do it quickly.

For the other weeks, I just got creative with the other Overlay options, like pieces of paper and buttons.

 

If you’re in the US, when does your holiday begin?

 

Any other questions? (PicMonkey or otherwise!)