Last year, we shared some of our favorite photo apps and alternatives to Instagram. We’ve since discovered more photo apps, some free and some a few bucks each, as well as options focusing on specific effects (such as adding text and enhancing images with typography). Here are some options worth checking out.
Posts tagged ‘design’
Building a blog you’re proud to share isn’t just about high drama, stunning photography, or sublime comedy. You also need to love the way your blog looks and functions.
Customizing your theme, getting creative with widgets, or tweaking your settings can be nerve-wracking on an active blog — what happens when that perfect new header image is off-center? Your custom font illegibly small? Your attempt at CSS makes your widgets disappear? Luckily, there’s a simple way to ensure that your readers never see a site you’re less than thrilled with: welcome to your own private bloggy playground, AKA a test blog. It’s free, it’s easy, and it’ll let you put your best blog forward.
The Daily Post is on hiatus this week, so we’ll be highlighting great posts from the archives that you might have missed the first time around (never fear — there’ll still be a new Photo Challenge on Friday!).
Our recent Blogger or Brand? post generated a lot of interest. For those still trying to create a blog identity, check out this excellent primer on visual identity and taglines.
If you’re old and/or hip enough to remember the days when books were printed on paper and sold on shelves, you probably have a handful of favorite book covers. The visual design of a book not only grabs the attention of would-be readers, but also sets a tone for the content sandwiched between its covers. Covers and spines that all look alike make for wonderful soft furnishings, but in a world in which ideas have to compete for attention, they often don’t cut it.
Cookie cutter blogs with the same look and feel as countless others have the same impact. Which is to say, not very much. So in this three part series on visually branding your blog, we take a look at some tips and tactics for thinking through and putting into action some simple ways you can set your blog apart, whether you’re an artistic maestro itching to make a masterpiece of your magnum opus, or simply a concerned party worried that your blog is an unbearable aesthetic train wreck.
What is CSS? It’s the design of your site — special code that tells your site how to display things like the color of text and the size of post titles. It’s like decorating your apartment — you decide how to make your space feel “just right” by painting walls or putting up a favorite photo. CSS is the tool you use to “paint” your site and make it look exactly the way you want it to.
You could write The Great American Blog Post (or Australian, or German, or Vietnamese…), but if design and layout issues make it difficult to read, it’s not going to get read. A busy background, oddly-placed photos, and colored text can all get between your message and the reader, but one of the biggest readability culprits is white space — or lack thereof.
Let us illustrate. This part may be a little painful, but bear with me:
Backgrounds are just there. They’re the stage sets to our existences, and, as it happens our blogs. As humans, we’re more often far too interested in what’s going on center stage to give a damn what’s going on in the blurry, insignificant old background. Sword fights! Riots! Beautiful people! Dancing cats! Mars Rovers made out of chocolate! The background has a hard time keeping up with all that drama.
The thing is, while they’re never going to steal the show, backgrounds play a subtle but important role in setting the mood, tone, and feeling of any given scene. And your blog is no exception. So today, we put on our best overalls, get the roller out, and think about the joy of custom backgrounds.
Earlier this week, Krista talked about ways to get widgety on your blog. You’ll find an assortment of widgets in your dashboard (by going to Appearance » Widgets), waiting patiently for you to activate them! So, now what? Let’s zoom in on several ways to transform your sidebar and enhance your site with different widgets.