I can’t tell you how many times I’ve talked about the power of graphics on this blog. I know I’ve talked a lot about how to keep them consistent because it builds brand recognition with your readers and social media followers. However, how can you keep your graphics consistent or even good looking if you don’t have Photoshop or tons of premium fonts and aren’t in the place to start investing in your blog? Well, I’m here to help you figure out how to do that today!
Start with the photos you’re taking
A lot of people want to take photos in horrible lighting on a different color background and then bring it into their editing software and make it look totally different. I’ll be honest, even working in Photoshop might not be able to do that for you. Instead, really give yourself the time you need to take good photos. Take them with natural light instead of your bedside lamp. Take several different angles so you’re not trying to manipulate something to be a different perspective. Take several photos so in case one winds up blurry, you’re not trying to sharpen it too much to overcompensate. You want to start with photos that are already mostly edited. I typically only brighten mine and add a little bit of saturation, with a tiny bit of sharpness added if necessary, and I’m able to do this because I start with good photos.
Be light when editing with filters / colors
Although I just mentioned that I do add saturation to some of my photos, I do not recommend that you do this to every photo or a lot. You have to be incredibly careful when you’re editing with filters and colors because you definitely do too much and end up ruining a great photo. The best bet when using these is to start slow and low, and move your way up a little at a time. To make sure you’re not doing too much, make sure your computer or phone brightness is up enough that you’re seeing the best version of the image while you’re editing. Pay attention that you’re not blowing out your colors, whether you’re working with filters or saturation. You don’t want to end up with neon colors in your photos!
[clickToTweet tweet=”Not having Photoshop is no longer a valid excuse for not having great, on-brand graphics!” quote=”Not having Photoshop is no longer a valid excuse for not having great, on-brand graphics!”]
Invest time into creating something great
When you’re not a designer, creating a great graphic can take patience. You might find yourself looking through all of your fonts or playing with different things that someone who already has consistent graphics wouldn’t. That’s okay. Playing around like this is great because it helps you figure out what you like and what you think works best with your brand. Give yourself that extra time to play around and create something that you’re actually happy with. If you just sit down and create something super quick without giving it enough thought, it’s possible that you’ll end up hating the graphic, and the only thing worse than that would be if the post went viral with that awful graphic.
Just because you don’t have Photoshop doesn’t mean that you can’t create something great. Also, just because you don’t have a ton of premium fonts doesn’t mean you can’t create a great graphic. There are tons of really awesome fonts available on Font Squirrel and Google Web Fonts, and you can always find free tutorials on how to accomplish something in your photo editor around the web.
Bottom line? Don’t settle. Your graphics could make or break your blog!