The Big Picture(s)

I have gone around a few times about how I want to size the pictures on my blog.  I would prefer to upload them in the largest size that blogger will allow, but apparently if someone tries to use a large image from the blog as a desktop background for their computer, like a few grandmas and occasionally a dad, the image is all stretched out and weird.  So for a little bit I uploaded them at the medium size.  Now this is better than a small, but, especially since I’ve started editing my photos to make the details better, this

2009_11_08_4064bw

just doesn’t compare with this.

2009_11_08_4064bw

I’ve been searching around for a while, and here are a few of the tricks that I’ve picked up.  Feel free to use what you can and hopefully it helps!

1.) If you are a blogger who is a PC and not a Mac, stop what you are doing right now and download Windows Live Writer.  It is my own personal blog hero of sorts.  It enables you to, among other things, write posts while not connected to the internet (ever discovered that you were having internet problems right when you tried to post your blog? Ugh!!).  It also uploads photos quickly, in order (instead of reverse order, like on blogger), lets you move them around easily if you like to punctuate your text with photos, add borders and effects if you choose, and most importantly, lets you set the size of the pictures.  Meaning you can enlarge the pictures as much as you want.  You can play around with different sizes and see what you prefer: my large photo above is Width 700, Height 522.

2.) Live Writer did allow me to change the size of my photos, but they still couldn’t fill the whole screen because of my blog template settings.  The settings left a few inches of margin on each side of the page which cut into the photos.  So I edited my template settings to allow the width I was looking for, using instructions from this link, item #1.  I don’t know how this would change your background if you have a fun design though, so good luck if you are trying it! Don’t forget to download a copy of your current blog template, so that you can go back to it if you don’t like the changes.

3.) If you use the link above to adjust your blog template settings, try not to get distracted by the author’s other 5 steps-only use item #1.  If you notice, the post is over 2 years old and what she is describing can be done more easily. If you have a Mac and can’t use Live Writer, I would look at this link which instead guides you through editing the html of your photo on blogger to make it appear larger.  I did this before I discovered Live Writer.  (They’re not even paying me for all of these promos!)

4.) If you like collages, and who doesn’t, check out Picnik.  It will allow you to upload several photos, do with them as you wish, and then save them back to your computer, where many similar sites will only let you print or share them. 

Picnik collage3

I must admit, however, that I doubt I will be using it again in the future.  If you have a DLSR, your files are likely too big for Picnik to handle and it runs incredibly slowly.  It will let you reduce the file size eventually, once it gets there, but will first freeze up every operation on your computer leaving you with little hope that any progress has been made in the meantime.  I hope to get some better photo editing software at some point that will enable me to do more than mine does now, and maybe it will include collages.  (Anyone have an old version of Photo Shop or Lightroom that they want to sell me?  Cheap? Let me know.)

5.) Maintain your optimism.  As I was typing this I was laughing at myself and how I sound moderately techy-which I am not.  If I can figure it out, then you can.  And I didn’t even figure it out, I just followed step by step instructions from other people who are helpful enough to communicate in plain English, with photo illustrations, and numbered lists than any idiot can follow.  Bless their hearts.

2 thoughts on “The Big Picture(s)

  1. Wow, Erin. You totally sounded "techy". What great tips! I am scared to try it though. I LOVE the way your pictures look so big like that. Although, not everyone's would look that amazing because you happen to just take amazing pictures! : )

    Also, I have been wanting to find photoshop or lightroom cheap too. I don't know if it is possible but sure would be awesome! Good luck!

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