How I Manage My Social Media Accounts
Part 2: Photoshop Tips for creating beautiful images & graphics
“You don’t take a photograph. You make it.” Ansel Adams
After focusing earlier in the month on how I manage my social media accounts through a spreadsheet, today’s post looks at creating the images for my three main social media platforms: Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
But first, a quick recap of Part 1:
On June 5, I broke down my steps for managing my social media accounts. (Post Here) I had a lot more information to include but realized I needed several posts to cover all of the information.
1: Create Monthly Social Media List in Excel
2: Put in Holiday/National Days, and Plan Blog Posts for the Month
3: Plan how to tie to a Novel, Author, Writing, etc. for each day I will post
4: Planning photos for each post and social media account
Steps 1-4 are listed out in my Social Media spreadsheet.
I list what the focus will be for the day and highlight in green once I find the photos I want, making sure the month is a mix of stock and Author-taken photos.
As I go through the month, any areas highlighted in yellow means I still need to find a photo. It could be for several reasons:
- I still need to go take my own photo
- Unsure how to apply the “day” to my author/storyteller brand
- Example: National Yo-Yo day on June 6th, I ended up buying a yo-yo to take my own pictures for the social media posts. It wasn’t until I was creating the three images, I decided to find quotes about life’s up and down moments.
Part II focuses on creating unique, fun images for each social media account. There is only 1 step for this post but it’s broken down into multiple areas full of tips and tricks.
I’m self-taught in Photoshop, learning much from friends, Pinterest, and YouTube videos. I first learned of this program in design school and I use this program to create my images for Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
Step 5: Create images for each social media account using Photoshop
I have blank templates for Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter which include my website & email to be adjusted as needed. (There will be another post specifically for Pinterest at a later date).
These sizes came from an online class I found on Pinterest. It was a paid class but came with multiple templates along with photos and graphics to use. I enjoyed the class and learned quite a bit from the instructor, Elle Russell. The videos were easy to follow along and I received A TON of resources that I always have access to when I need them. Check out the link here
Photoshop tips for editing the original image to look it’s best:
There are several steps I always start with for my photos:
- Adjust the LevelsRGB levels: I move the left tab into the higher peaks and the right tab closer to a lower dip
- Adjust the Saturation Amp up the saturation and sometimes the lightness levels
- Double check against the original photo to see if the adjustments helped or muddied the photo
Simple and easy!
Here are two more examples!
- Copy preferred photo into each template, choosing the best photo from each group to fit Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
- Resize photo to fit, leaving room for text, sometimes I have to “extend” the image to cover the new shape determined by template size.
PHOTOSHOP TIPS TO EXTEND PHOTOS
1. Extension: Simple grab and go
First Step: Grab section without any of the foreground images
Second Step: Copy and paste the section into its own layer
Third Step: Stretch to end of template size
- Works best with simple colors and textures
- Keeps featured foreground image same scale without stretching
Some photos I’ve found on stock photo sites are repeatable and I just multiple the original photo out at the preferred scale.
Original Scale on Top, Scaled down and repeated out for canvas area of the template on the bottom.
3. Healing Brush and Stamp Tools
There are times when I need to “edit” out something. Using the healing brush and or the stamp tool, I can remove parts of the image I don’t need.
This is also used when I need to “extend” photos where the simple copy and drag a selection doesn’t work.
Photoshop Tips for More Complex Alterations
Sometimes I need to “copy” a part of an image to make “two”
Take a black and white photo and make it green because the main male character, Mark Lawson Hastings in Renewed by Grace had a green jeep.
Or the opposite and make a color photo black and white because it doesn’t match my character’s features.
Make a character’s eyes the right color… to match with my main male character, Joshua Cabot in Trusting Grace.
Aging the “boy” in the photo to be more accurate to my character’s age in Renewed by Grace.
Extending a table because it would work better for Facebook and Twitter
These are just a few of the adjustments I’ve made to my images using Photoshop to create the perfect social media photos.
I love color and variety, which shows in my social media feeds. Don’t forget to check them out and say hello.
Facebook Business Page www.facebook.com/acboulier
Let me know your favorite photos and I’d love to hear about your own tips and tricks.
Stay tuned for next month:
PART III Uploading to multiple Social Media sites while working a 40-hour job!
Until next time, may God’s grace surround you,