How do you create your header?

(19 Posts)
Gusthetheatrecat Wed 22-Feb-12 20:50:37

Am new to this board, and still rather new to blogging, and I was wondering how other people create their headers?

I have just made my second header. It's better than my first was, but still a bit ropey. I did it in Paint and Picasa. I suspect I need to invest in something like Photoshop, but don't want to spend money on this without knowing it's definitely what I want.

I've read some tutorials on creating headers, but one of them assumed that you could turn a Word document into a picture (which I can't do), and another was writing about creating headers in Picnik, which I don't want to get too attached to as apparently it's vanishing.

I don't want to do anything too fancy. Just manipulate a photo a bit, and add text, or put several photos together, add some effects, and some text, or perhaps create something from scratch with simple shapes.

Can anyone help me out?

OP’s posts: |
trulymyrtle Thu 23-Feb-12 20:37:42

I'm wanting to make a new banner for my blog truly myrtle and I'd love to know about this too!
I had an idea to draw/paint something and scan it in - how would I do this so it didn't look too homemade? Any on-line (free) software that might help?

Gusthetheatrecat Thu 23-Feb-12 22:06:39

Hi trulymyrtle! I hope someone knowledgeable will be along soon to help us out! I managed to paste a photo I'd taken into one side of a long thin paint document, and then extend some of the plain colour out across the header so it was a plain background for text (you can see what I mean at the top of www.cornerbycorner.co.uk) but my GOD it took ages and I had to find some cunning workarounds at some points. Which made me think surely there must be an easier way?
This tutorial was great. Right up until the bit where she says, 'right click, hit 'save as picture'...'
Which is no good if you can't do that in your version of Word!

I am sure there must be an answer out there. Even if the answer is, 'just get on it and buy Photoshop, you tight so-and-so'... ;)

OP’s posts: |
trulymyrtle Fri 24-Feb-12 09:49:08

Hmmm, I'm afraid of the photoshop answer too!

Gusthetheatrecat Thu 01-Mar-12 22:26:26

Anyone? Myrtle and I are here with our notebooks out and pens poised, waiting for the answer!
tumbleweed

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TootingJo Fri 02-Mar-12 09:24:16

Photoshop is great, but very expensive. Still wondering whether to invest in it myself! If you type 'online image editor' into google there are sites where you can upload a photo and resize/play around a bit. It's not perfect, but I've used these sites before and find they do the job better than Paint.

Gusthetheatrecat Sat 03-Mar-12 20:07:52

Thank you TootingJo! I will have a hunt around. I did find Picnik, but don't want to get attached to it as it's being scrapped...

OP’s posts: |
JenniferJJ Sun 04-Mar-12 14:18:50

I can't really help as my header is very basic, but I just did it in Paint. A lot of the people with very smart headers may have paid someone to design them, which I don't believe actually costs as much as you might think.

Paint is fine if you just want an image which you have taken or created yourself and some text. There are also copyright free images available online but I'm afraid I don't know enough about copyright to recommend any, perhaps someone else might be able to help with that.

TheresaMayHaveaBiscuit Sun 04-Mar-12 14:36:08

I tend to use Photoshop or GIMP - the latter is free, and fairly similar to Photoshop. If you want Photoshop though but don't want to fork out for the latest version - understandable, it is very expensive - you might be able to find an older version on Amazon. Or you could try Photoshop Elements which is a cheaper, scaled down version of the original package.

ThisismeSarahmumof3 Mon 05-Mar-12 14:23:09

hi there, I have just put together a simple tutorial for paint shop pro, which is very easy to use and you can get a free trial of it, (which can be uninstalled and reinstalled as many times as you like!) take a look if you have any questions would be happy to help x thisisme-sarahmumof3.blogspot.com/2012/03/using-paint-shop-pro-basics.html

TottWriter Mon 05-Mar-12 14:41:13

I would definitely recommend GIMP, which is the open-source version of Photoshop. It save you having to fork out a lot of money, and it is completely legal. I know people (friends etc.) who have illicit copies of Photoshop, and from what I can see, GIMP is no harder to use. About the only difference is that the editing tools are all in individual boxes with no unified backdrop like the grey wall that Photoshop has.

I've taught myself to do various things in GIMP, and designed my blog background using it and some custom brushes which I installed with the help of online tutorials. Once you get the hang of what all the tools do, it's pretty easy to use, especially if you're like me and struggle to draw!

doubleshotlatte Mon 05-Mar-12 18:18:04

I draw mine, like I drew the buttons and links on my blog but mine is a comic blog so I have to. And I have all the paraphernalia that comes with being a graphic designer.

Believe it or not, I have been in a situation where I didn't have any design software/scanner/tablet, just the basic Mac/PC bundle. What I did then for my old blog, was to find copyright-free/creative commons webpage header graphics and use the simple Paint etc to stick a title on it. I also looked through my digital photos, found one in the right (panoramic) layout and cropped it into a header using same basic program.

I posted a free webpage header here myself, in gratitude for the ones that helped me in the past.

If you like, you can message me for any specific advice. Or I can make you a (quick and easy) Header in return for a link back or publicity button on your blog?

trulymyrtle Mon 05-Mar-12 19:47:02

doubleshot your blog is wicked! I love your drawings!
I'd rather like to part hand draw my header and insert some text - I am fairly flumaxed (sp?)
Do you think it would work if I draw and scan and then save it as an image and doctor in gimp or something? Not that I can work gimp - it is totally baffling...

TheresaMayHaveaBiscuit Mon 05-Mar-12 19:56:02

I'm on my phone, but when I get a minute tomorrow I'll post some links to GIMP tutorials

TheresaMayHaveaBiscuit Mon 05-Mar-12 19:58:15

I'm on my phone, but when I get a minute tomorrow I'll post some links to GIMP tutorials

trulymyrtle Mon 05-Mar-12 23:27:43

You're a star TheresaMay!

TheresaMayHaveaBiscuit Thu 08-Mar-12 11:24:37

Sorry this is late, got a bit sidetracked yesterday sad

I found a few that might be useful to you, they're a mix of text based tutorials and videos.

List of video tutorials These cover the basic (cropping, resizing, rotating etc.) and gradually work up to slightly more complex stuff.

Another video also covering basic techniques. and also shows you around the layout of the interface.

Tutorials on the official site These are text based, but also cover basic techniques, then gradually work up to more advanced things - there is also a logo tutorial which you might be useful. It takes you through the steps to create a specific logo, but once you know your way around the programme you should be able to use it to create your own.

Hope they help!

trulymyrtle Fri 09-Mar-12 21:17:11

thanks theresamay!

thecrumbymummy Wed 14-Mar-12 12:59:02

I bought a graphics tablet which came with Photoshop Elements for £80. Considerably cheaper than Photoshop and does everything I need. I'm quite proud of my header and someone once said I should win an award for it but I think they were joking! ;o)

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