In the blogging world, images matter. They draw attention to written articles and can even stand alone as posts themselves. With mobile apps such as Instagram, Afterlight and VSCO Cam dominating social media, so many of us are already acting like amateur photographers, but when it comes to placing photos on your blog, you’ll want to stand out. It’s therefore important go a little further than simply choosing a filter, and with some nifty image manipulation you can create your own visual alternatives to an informative text post.
If you’re lucky enough to work in an industry that uses Adobe Photoshop, it can come in very handy. When producing posts such as our Guide to Colour, we use Photoshop to put together visuals and it allows for a fun but professional appearance. While there are inevitable costs attached to such high quality software, student discounts can give you a helping hand if you’re really keen to use it. Alternatively, if the cost of buying Photoshop for personal use seems a little steep, free online editors such as Pixlr can provide a useful platform for image editing and offer similar (yet limited) tools to the pro software.
When it comes to finding your way around the software you end up choosing, the user guides that are provided tend to be detailed but extensive, and can often leave you feeling overwhelmed by information overload. This is why it can be useful to choose from the multitude of online tutorials that can be found with a quick search of the internet. A lot of professional and amateur image editors alike have been kind enough to produce videos or articles on how they get the best results, and it’s easy to find step by step instructions by searching for specific techniques that you’re interested in.
If you’re still in education and you’re keen to learning more about Photoshop, take advantage of your art department (if you have one!). I owe my Photoshop abilities to studying Art throughout secondary school and college – the fact they had an archaic version of Photoshop installed on the computers meant that there was a world of editing opportunity at our fingertips, and one of the best things is that you needn’t always use the latest version of the software to still produce great results!
Once you get to grips with the basics, my best advice would be to stick with it. Open Photoshop (or your choice of editor) in your spare time and play around with what’s on offer. Experiment with the tools available and don’t be afraid to make mistakes! Just be sure to save any original images you might be editing, so that any unsuccessful experiments don’t replace your works of art. Like any skill, if you keep practicing, you’ll continue to improve, and soon you’ll be constructing stunningly beautiful graphics. For example, not too long ago, I imparted some of my Photoshop wisdom onto Katie, and with all the practice she’s put in, she’ll surpass my ability in no time!
Until then, here’s a photo I mocked-up on Photoshop of the two of us going to watch Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Don’t we look grand?
Have your own tips for image editing? Share them in the comments below or Tweet us !