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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Blogging Secrets #3: How to make a Banner for your Youtube Channel!

created by FionaBrianne for
Post number three in the Blogging Secrets series is here!
Thank you for the lovely comments that you have been leaving me encouraging me to continue with the series as well as the suggestions of what topic to cover next.
Today we are going to see how easy it is to make a decent banner for a Youtube channel using more or less any image.

Why is a banner important?
It is the very first thing a new subscriber sees on your channel and you know what they say about first impressions. If your banner is bold, different and colourful, then that suggests that you not only put time and effort in videos, but that they are exciting to watch. I have subscribed to people based on their banner alone!
 So let's get to it !
Note: For the purpose of this blogpost, I will be creating a new banner for my channel

Step One- Getting A Template
First things first, you will need to use a template for your banner as Youtube have size requirements for potential banner images. There is nothing worse than putting so much effort into a banner and then finding that it doesn't even fit your homepage. Luckily, YouTube have already made a template which will make a perfect size banner and creativity a whole lot easier.

On your YouTube channel page, hover over your channel banner and click the pencil icon that appears on the right side, then select 'Edit Channel Art'.

Then on the next page, select 'How to create channel art' which is highlighted in blue at the bottom of the pop up upload screen.

It will take you to a page with lots of information ( confusing information at that!), but scroll to the section that says Channel Art guidelines. There are two templates linked, but select the first option and save that to your desktop/pictures/computer/drive etc. And because I am extra nice, I have linked it here to avoid confusion.
You're welcome.
  Channel Art Template (Fireworks)

Step Two- Selecting images/ backgrounds
This part of the tutorial is completely up to you and what kind of image/ background you would like to use on your banner.
My favourite websites for clear high quality images and backgrounds are WeHeartIt and Tumblr because you can find almost anything on them just by searching using a key word, eg. some of my favourites- summer, chevron, paint splatter, overlays. Alternatively, Google Search is a winner, but be sure to select FREE stuff so you aren't chased with copyright issues ( especially if you plan on having a successful Youtube channel!). In addition, you may want to create your own social media icons to fit in with your channel theme, but that's another blog post!
Step Three- Creating your Banner
PicMonkey! Again, this image editor is King when it comes to making banner, icons, thumbnails etc, so that's what we will be using today.
Open PicMonkey and select the 'Edit' which is at the top of the homepage.

In the pop up upload window, find the saved template that you downloaded earlier and open the file.
You will notice that there are 3 shades of grey boxes on the image, where the central one is the darkest. I would recommend that you keep your images/ text in this grey box, just to be sure that your design will not be cut off on different devices.

Now to get creative! 
   If you would like TEXT on your image, click the icon on the side of your editing screen with two t's (Text) and go ahead and choose your text and font. Remember to keep it in the darkest grey box.

   If you would like IMAGES on your banner, click the butterfly icon (Overlays) and select the first option 'Your Own'. That way you can add any images that you have collected from your computer or websites to your banner.

 Although I manipulated my image beforehand, if you need to get rid of white space in an image, play around with the 'Blend Modes'. This is found when you click the image and select the 'Basic' Tab. If that doesn't work, select the 'Eraser' Tab and manually rub out the space.

   Once you have your text and images, you will need to get rid of the template outlines, otherwise it will just show up once you have uploaded your banner.
And that ain't cute.
Head over to the magic wand  icon (Effects) on the left hand side of the screen and scroll near to the bottom to the tab labelled 'Draw'. It will now give you the option to draw on your image, and that is what we are going to do.

Increase the brush size to the highest point, ensure that the colour is set to white and colour the entire image. You will notice that the colour will paint behind your text and images and will then provide a base for your background.

Obviously, if you want a white background you can leave it here. Hit the apply button to save the changes.
   If you would like a BACKGROUND, select the criss-cross/ hatching icon (Textures).

You can use the Textures provided by the website, but if you have already designed/ found your own, select the 'Your Own' icon.

 From here, upload your chosen background and play with the saturation and fade using the toolbar that has popped up.

And that is all there is to it!
Save your image to your computer and return to you Youtube channel homepage. Select the pencil icon again and then the 'Edit Channel Art'. Select your photo from the upload screen, ensure that the design fits all devices and you are all done once you have saved your changes.

Making a banner definitely takes some of your precious free time if you are a perfectionist or if you need the right saturation/effects/images/smile etc, but once that is done, the process is extremely quick, not to mention worthwhile as a great selling point for your channel.
(Doesn't it look so fancy!)

So! Another Blogging Secret has been revealed! Hope you all enjoyed today's post, let me know in the comments and 1+d this post to share it with your friends if you think it was worth 5 minutes of your time
 (FYI, these posts take days to make, I am not even joking).
Have a great week and make sure you ENTER MY GIVEAWAY NOWwhich will be ending very soon!


Happy Blogging people
God Bless,
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Tuesday, August 19, 2014

£3.50 Real Techniques Brush Set?! | Superdrug Deals of the Week!

As usual, I love a good bargain, so I knew I had to share with you guys what I found on another random trip to Superdrugs during my lunch break.
# insertthesmh
I found a couple of beauty things in the 'damaged product' bucket which, if I am honest, is the last place I woul ever peek into, but after today, will efinately be the first next time as these were probably the best purchases I have made in a while.


MUA Heaven and Earth Eyeshadow  // £4.00 > £1.50

The first is one of the MUA eyeshaow palettes which are a personal favourite of mine becauae they are cheap, cheerful and they are extremly pigmented. I don't own this palette and had planned to buy it when it first came out, but I talked myself out of it because I had something similar at the time.

 The palette has 12 eyeshadow colours and of the 12, three were shattered, hence the markdown. Thankfully, the three broken colours are extremely glittery and much too pale for my skintone, so I would not have used them anyway. The colour scheme itself is very earthy, hence the name, and I think the darker colours would look great for an autumn makeup look.

Rimmel London Lipstick "Sugar Plum" £4.99 > £2.50 

Rimmel lipsticks are definately one of my favourite go to brands, especially for those deep and dark shades for the autumn and winter. I find that the Lasting Finish range ( the ones with the pretty crown stamp and dark purple packagaing) live up to expectations with great colour payoff and long lasting colour. 
This one does not disappoint. 

 Sugar Plum is a vibrant pinky purple colour with tiny little white glitters, which makes it quite a 'look at me' New Years Eve party like colour. Although I failed to take pictures of the swatch on my lips, it shows up really well and feels nice and creamy. I found this in perfect condition, with no lip marks, smudges or cracks in sight, so perhaps this is really a clearance item rather than a damaged one. 

Real Techniques Mini Brush Set £7.99 > £3.50

This is by far my favourite find out of all three bargains just because it is Real Techniques. When I say I was incredibly close to buying this exact kit last week, I am not joking; I got to the tills and changed my mind, so obviously when I saw this in the bottom of the toss out bucket, I was absolutely delighted because it was selling for better than half price!

The kit consists of three mini brushes from the original RT brush kit, shrunk in order to be travel sized: the mini shading, foundation and face brush, which are supposed to be the three favourites/ must haves of the entire RT line. I have heard so many good things about the RT line and since my beloved Sigma makeup brushes are shedding like no one's buisness, I may have to make the permenant switch very soon.

Likewise with the lipstick, I am unsure why these brushes were in the damaged bucket. They are in perfect condition, unused and clean. The only reason could be that the sealing on the packaging was a little dirty from makeup residue and slightly peeling, but that was it! Even the checkout girl was saying she had no idea why the items were on clearance. All I can say is that God is on my side because a saving of just under £10 is quite incredible.
"When Jesus says yes, nobody can say no"

The moral of the story is wait a while if you can, you never know what kind of mood your drugstore will be in the week after.

Total = £7.50
Savings = £9.50

So that is all for this week! I realise that I have not posted in a while, but I have been very busy with life commitments etc etc, but I have lots of posts planned, especially for my Blogging Secrets series that is going better than I expected, so thanks for the comments and suggestions.
If you havent seen the series, here are the posts so far:

Lastly, make sure you enter my 1,000 subscribers giveaway over on my YT channel for your chance in winning some FREE beauty, fashion and tech goodies!

*note* these savings are probably exclusive to my local Superdrugs only, so on't expect to see these exact products on sale. However, it oesnt mean that you have to keep walking past the bargain bucket as you might fin some deals of your own

Happy Shopping
God Bless
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