The Importance of Branding
I’ve never been artistically inclined. It always made me a little sad actually. In high school and college, it seemed like all of my friends were artists. Like them, I had all kinds of great ideas. Getting them to the paper and out of my head was another thing entirely though.
Nowadays, one of my favorite things about the internet is the interconnected community it gives us and the ability to work together on projects or find easier ways to handle projects when you are stuck. There are amazing premade graphical resources available that may match a theme you are working on. There are also great tools available to help you in creating it yourself. This can be especially helpful when creating images for your blog or website.
One of the most important things to think about right from the beginning of your blog is your brand. I know, if you are just starting out a thing like branding might seem silly. However, if you are planning to monetize your blog or make a strong professional presence for yourself a strong brand is important. Not many companies are going to be keen on working with “just another WordPress blog”.
There are so many important aspects to think about when it comes to branding. Your colors ( generally around 4-5) should fit the mood of your blog. If you are doing paranormal romance you don’t really want a cotton candy pink blog. Your voice, while I strongly advocate for it being your own, should be constant throughout your articles or posts. Even the topics you cover or the way that you cover them goes along with branding.
Your Logo is Your Face to the World
No, I don’t recommend you use your face as your logo. Although, it is working out for the Pringles guy. More, your logo is the first thing that your readers, or potential customers, will see on your blog. It should be a strong way of identifying your blog, your brand, and your message.
Your logo can literally be anything. You could do your name. It could be a cartoon cupcake. Some people go with their initials. How professional or how whimsical your logo is will depend on the feel of your blog, but should match the tone of your words or message.
It’s important not to overthink here, though. A number of people get caught up spending days, weeks, even months coming up with their logo. While it is important to have a well thought out logo, remember that all of this is time that you are taking away from producing content for your site. Yes, your logo is important but don’t drive yourself crazy over it. You can always update and make tweaks to it later! I’ve seen so many blogs do this and done it myself as my theme/tone grew and evolved.
Buy a Premade Logo or DIY?
Whether you are good with graphic design or not there are options available for a low-cost professional logo. While a logo can easily be made in a few different programs you can also find places to purchase a template or have one made for you.
Logo Creation Services:
When you have an idea for your logo and you don’t want to or can’t do it yourself the logo creators who are available can be a lifesaver!
Sites such as Etsy or Fiverr are great for finding someone to create a logo for you for a set price. Some prices vary depending on how detailed you want your design to be. Others are a flat fee regardless of the design.
Logo Template Services:
If you don’t exactly know what you want out of a logo a good route to go is a template. This will give you the opportunity to look through various styles and decide which works for you. This can also give you more freedom to change it out if you decide you don’t like it later because they are generally cheaper and easy to adapt to your personal style.
Etsy can be great for this. Creative Market is another fantastic resource for finding logo templates as well as many other blog graphics. Many of these require Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator to alter it to your liking. However, you can always use free options such as Gimp if you don’t own these programs.
DIY Logo Services:
When you are new to programs such as Photoshop they can be a little daunting. When I first began using it I’m pretty sure I just stared at it for several days trying to figure out what was where and how to do anything. Luckily, there are resources that can do the basics for those who don’t need the full capability of the more powerful programs. These resources can be fantastic for logo creation!
Make a Quick and Easy Logo in PicMonkey
Doing your own logo couldn’t be easier with programs like PicMonkey. Although there are a number of sites I use for graphics resources I have found Picmonkey to be the easiest to use when I want something quick and easy.
In just a few steps we’re going to work on how to make a quick and easy logo in PicMonkey! This is a basic logo, but depending on your site or your brand it may be just what you need! Through these steps, you should have a good understanding to expand on our basic logo and make something that shows your personal style!
1.) Navigate to the PicMonkey website. You can sign in for their premium service which offers a wider variety of templates and add-ons for a monthly fee, or you can use their free service.
Hover over design until the gray bar drops down that will show “Start Your Design”. From here you want to choose the “blank canvas” option. If you have a specific size in mind you can also go with “custom size”.
2.) There are a number of different ways to choose your template size once the template page appears. Some will be noted as “free”. Others will have a crown icon on them. This indicates the premium choices. ( shown with green arrows)
You can choose the category of image sizes and styles such as Instagram or Facebook-sized graphics, or you can go directly to print size and make a choice depending on the size that you need.
For this tutorial, we will be going with the logo tag ( shown with purple arrow) and choosing the “Honey Bunny” free template.
3.) On the edit screen, you can do a wide variety of things. We will begin with the most basic. Clicking on the bunny image brings up the overlay panel. From here you can change the color of the image, change the opacity of the image, or even delete it.
On the layers panel, you will see a layer that holds each piece of the image. You can alter each of these with an overlay panel that will pop up, or you can change their position by clicking on one within the layer panel and dragging it up or down the list to make it below or above another element. Each element can also be moved around the canvas by clicking it and dragging to where you prefer it to be.
To rotate the image you can click on the top middle circle above the image. To flip it horizontally or vertically you can click on the double-sided arrows on the overlay panel. To enlarge or shrink you can click and drag any of the circles in the corners of the image.
We are going to delete everything already on this canvas for our tutorial.
4.) Once you have a clear canvas you can choose a detail from the overlay panel or go with a text-only logo. For this tutorial, we are going to choose one of the monster guys under “critters”.
Choose the butterfly icon on the left side of the screen. Scroll through the options on the overlays panel until you find the one that you would like to use. Just as with the template options there will be free and premium choices. (The premium will once again be indicated with a crown if you are using a free account.)
Once you have chosen a little critter or other graphics to use you can alter the size by dragging the corner circles. The image will begin black in many cases as it does with our monster fellow. Choose color 1 on the Overlay tab on the right side of the screen to alter the main color of the image.
5.) Once your monster fellow is where you would like him to be you can add text to the image by clicking on the”Tt” on the left side of the screen. You can choose to use a PicMonkey font or one of your own fonts from those installed on your computer.
Click the “add text” button and a text bar will appear on the screen. Double click inside of the bar and you will have the option to write your business name or other words.
The size of the text can be altered by clicking on the right or left side of the text bar and dragging, clicking any of the circles on the corners of the text bar or choosing the size with the slider or drop-down menu on the Text panel on the right side of the screen.
Once you have the image the way that you want it to look you can export it to your hard drive to use any way that you would like. You can also resize the image to any size that you would like by using the resize option under the top slider icon on the left side of the screen.
I hope you found this tutorial on how to make a quick and easy logo with PicMonkey useful. If you have any questions or would like further clarification on anything don’t hesitate to leave a comment or email me!
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