Friday, June 6, 2014

Easy Steps to Make Your Own Images for Blog Backgrounds, Headers and Other Projects

Recently I began looking into all the choices out there for blog backgrounds, headers and blog decorations. I saw many beautiful ones, but I didn't want a background and header that other people might be using. I also was looking for something more plain and personalized than the choices I was seeing.

As I was browsing, I couldn't help but wonder how people make them.

  • Do they all own Photoshop or some fancy program?
  • Did they learn this in college or art school?
  • More importantly, could someone without experience and without expensive programs take his/her own photo and turn it into an image to build a background and header? 
  • Could I do this? 
I can't answer the first two questions, but the answer to the last two questions is a resounding, "Yes"! and "You can too"!

My way may not be the best way, but it works. For this tutorial
I chose to use Picmonkey and Paint.Net. I took a photo of a border punch that I will use for this step-by-step, but I will also show examples of other images at the end of this tutorial for ideas.



There are 2 main steps, but each is broken down for those who are new to these programs.

Step 1: Picmonkey

  1. Go to Picmonkey
  2. Choose "Edit" (A pop-up box will appear with your photos)
  3. Choose the image you want to use and the click open
  4. Click on "Auto Adjust" (you can make the adjustments individually if auto adjust doesn't give you the result you want).
  5. Rotate your image, if needed, to make it straight
  6. Crop your image
There are other programs out there, but I find this one to be the easiest.

Go to Picmonkey

Choose "Edit" (A pop-up box will appear with your photos)


Choose the image you want to use and the click open

 

Click on "Auto Adjust" (you can make the adjustments individually if auto adjust doesn't give you the result you want)



Rotate your image, if needed, to make it straight



Crop your image


Final Result

Step 2: Paint.NET

  1. Find your image on your computer and open your image in Paint.NET
  2. Choose the wand to make you background translucent
  3. Click on a part of the image you want to remove (it will highlight blue)
  4. Click on "Edit"and then in the menu choose "Cut". Continue with each section until are parts of the image you DO NOT want are removed
  5. Once you are done click "File" and on that menu click "Save As". 
  6. A box will appear. Name your image and then choose "PNG" in the "Save as type" menu. Congratulations! You now have an image you can use to build your blog background and header with or anything you want.

Find your image on your computer and open your image in Paint.NET


Choose the wand to make you background translucent



Click on a part of the image you want to remove (it will highlight blue). Click on "Edit"and then in the menu choose "Cut". Continue with each section until are parts of the image you DO NOT want are removed


Once you are done click "File" and on that menu click "Save As".


A box will appear. Name your image and then choose "PNG" in the "Save as type" menu.  


Congratulations! You now have an image you can use to build a blog background, header or anything you want.

Here are some other examples:
I used elements from one of my handmade greeting cards, circle of flowers and leaves and bow. Forgive my scraggly bow, it was my first try and doesn't matter anyway when used as a small decoration among larger things. Did you notice the wavy lines of my bow in my header? I placed it on my dog. You don't have to worry about everything being perfect.  When placed together it's not noticeable.

I made my blog button from the flowers and leaves I cropped from the card.

Blog button


One of my dogs
Handmade Card-in-a-Box

Thanks for stopping by and Happy Crafting!

Copyright © 2014 Angela Conklin - Heartedly Handcrafted
All Rights Reserved