Spend even a short amount of time in blogging circles and you’ll notice a common theme rising to the surface—pinnable images. I have to confess some feelings of frustration and inadequacy when it comes to graphic design. One of the reasons I think I have such a passion for writing is because I absolutely cannot draw. I always wanted to create pictures. I don’t have a drop of artistic talent! In time, God helped me realize I could still create pictures, but with words instead.
So, I set off on the journey of writing. I wrote novels and short stories and not-so-short stories. I attended writers’ conferences. I reluctantly joined the world of social media (and found I enjoy some of it!). I started a blog, then a second, and a third. I found I enjoyed that as well. Then I found out that you are “supposed” to create stunning images to go with your blog posts so readers will pin and share them with a wider audience.
This was discouraging. I’m not a photographer, and I’m not gifted as an artist. Being a writer is what I feel God has called me to do. And there is the most important point—if it is God’s call, then He will provide a way. The way He provides for you will be different from the way He provides for me. Maybe He has blessed you with a talent for photography or graphic design. Maybe He gave you a brother who can draw anything you ask or a business partner who has strength in graphics.
I’m going to share some of the ways He has helped me solve my graphic problem. But above all, please remember—you are called to be the you God created you to be. No one else can be you. And you cannot be them. Learn from them. Brainstorm creative ideas. But at the end of the day, be the person God created you to be.
1. Don’t overlook the power of a simple background with text. Look at my image for a copywork post I did below. It is a simple image of a shape. I cropped a larger picture (of multiple images) in Paint, inserted a text box, and saved the image. Done.
2. Borders are increasingly popular. Picmonkey is a very popular site for creating images with borders, but I honestly haven’t invested the time to learn how to do it. I did find a simpler way, though, to create borders that meet my needs. I use Microsoft Publisher for a variety of things. If you create a new file and insert a picture, it will let you frame it very easily. With the picture selected, you should see a Picture Tools/Format box at the top of the screen. You can choose from multiple shapes and styles of borders. You can change the color of the border using the Picture Border option to the right of the frames. When you are finished, simply right click on the image and select Save as Picture.
Purchasing images is another option. Two companies I use are Dreamstime and GraphicStock. Dreamstime has a much broader selection of images, for the things I use on a regular basis, but they are also more expensive. You can catch periodic sales on credits on the site, and they also have a section that is free to use with attribution. GraphicStock has a very large number of images, and at the time of this posting, did not have a cap on the number of downloads per day.
Finally—don’t forget one very important thing. It might be fun to see a post you write go viral and get thousands of hits. It might be encouraging and exciting. I don’t know—I haven’t had any viral posts. But if just one person reads what you write and is drawn closer to God because of it, then you have succeeded in what God has uniquely equipped you to do.