No Excuses For Bad Images

No ExcusesDisclaimer: I am not a graphic designer and will never claim to be. That said I have a lot of fun seeing what I can come up with when it comes to photo editing. I have taken some photoshop classes and I like to dabble with some of the many entry level tools that are out there. 

So when it comes to sourcing images for blogs and social media I have a strong opinion that there is no excuse for bad images. If I am being truthful I would say that these are tools I think everyone could and should use. Just about everyone could use a some better imagery if not for their business related profiles, for some of the personal ones.

One of my current go-to tools is Canva, where you can create many things either for free or for a minimal charge (about $1) . Canva also has a ton of stock imagery priced at $1

In the example below I had a quote from Winston Churchill and my idea was to overlay it on an image of the man himself. I first sourced the image using Google Images, further narrowing the search to usage rights that allowed reuse.

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One of the first things I like about Canva is all the presets for different types of images. Need a Twitter header, a YouTube thumbnail, a Facebook Event Cover Photo? Canva has you covered. Of course you always have the option to enter your own custom dimensions, but the presets offer an easy approach to getting started on some of the most common formats. Especially because the specifications for image sizes change often, these presets make it easy for newbies and the experienced.

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Just a sample of some of the presets you can choose to start creating with Canva.

Taking my Winston Churchill photo into Canva I started with a present for a Facebook post as that was my intended use for the finished product. I then selected one of their template layouts as it had a clean layout and fonts that I liked.

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The Canva Layout (template) I started with

Next I dropped in my photo and made necessary adjustments to the text and then filters.

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I ended up with something respectable but I was still not completely satisfied. I didn’t like the text over his face and I didn’t want to shrink the text down too much so I ended up switching things up to another layout. This was the final result.

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And after that I did another. All in less than a half hour.

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Canva actually has a really cool design school where you can learn more about everything from typography to design layout. I’ll admit I might need to be stranded on a desert island before I have the time for design school. I’d highly recommend just diving right in and learning along the way as its just so simple and satisfying to use. Some other similar tools I haven’t played with as much but that work similarly are: