I have mentioned in my previous blog post the importance of social media for your business. You will be surprised how often I get asked questions about Instagram besides all the furniture painting questions:) There is a lot of work goes into creating a selling account with beautiful and cohesive feed, interesting posts and entertaining stories. So, today, I want to focus on the visual part. I put together a list of apps that will help you with editing, video making and feed planning.
These are not just for furniture painters, but for anyone, really. I will, nevertheless, point out some app's features that would be useful to my fellow refinishers.
I have to admit: I own a very nice camera with several lenses, but I fail to use it. It is heavy, bulky, I simply can't have it on me at all times. So, the phone is my go to pretty much 90% of the time. Good news is that the phones comes with pretty good built in cameras today. It is extremely convenient too, because you can edit and post your pictures on the same device. Here is when editing apps on your phone come in handy.
Let's begin with image editing.
My go to app is Snapseed. It is free (YAY!), and it will take care of the basic editing needs.
What I like about the app:
1. Tune image feature lets you change the brightness (ain't nobody wants to look at pics that look like they've been taken in a dungeon). Saturation helps your image to pop those colors (don't get carried away if you are working with furniture: your customer needs to see the color to be as true as possible).
2. Details. Structure and sharpening is to the rescue to intensify the details.
3. Perspective. This one was definitely a life savior for me. You spend 20 minutes taking 47 photos, and non of them coming up straight? This little tool will straighten it for ya. Follow the grid lines to get it just right.
4. Healing. You took a phenomenal picture! Then you look at it again, and notice a crack on the floor/ a sock your kid left behind/ a seam from your staging wall? That's where this feature is your best friend. It will erase what you don't want others to see.
5. Text. If you still do not have a logo, but need to watermark your image, just insert your brand name with Text feature. You can choose color, transparency and style.
Another editing app you might enjoy is Pixlr. It has most of the features Snapseed has, but offers more filters, and is good for collages. It also has quite a few templates. Templates may be used to create an eye catching frame for you image for beautiful posts or stories. For more Collage layouts check out Layout app and BeFunky.
Canva app is one of my favorite for social media posts. It comes with a great amount of free templates that are sorted out by different formats: Instagram story, Facebook post, Poster, Logo, Flyer, Pinterest Pin, etc. It is very convenient in case you are running your account on different platforms. Great source for animated media.
One tip I've learnt the hard way:
If you use text over pictures, pick one font and stick with it! Different apps have different fonts, and it is easy to get carried away playing with all these fun designs. If you want a cohesive attractive feed, stick to one for palette and same text style.
Font style is a good app for stickers, quote bubbles and filters. I might be playing with apps way too much😂
Great little app to edit your movies, or create a slideshow (I actually made a movie with multiple pictures once, and had a blast doing it! Would totally be an awesome project to do with kids!)
Some features are free, but the membership gives you a lot more options, and, for about $8 per year it is totally worth it, in my opinion. The highest resolution for videos is 1080, so it is probably not perfect for professional photographer use, but it is totally suitable for social media posts.
What I love about the app:
1. Speed up. Want to show off your work progress, but don't want to bore your viewer? It will make it seem like you work at a rocket pace.
2. Music or voice recording. The app provides some sample tunes, but also gives you an option to add you own music. You can record your voice and apply on top of your video too.
3. Filters and basic image editing available, as well as cropping, reverse and freeze. It is just a fun tool to play with.
4. Text over video for subtitles for your tutorial, or any type of slideshows.
Scoompa video is another option for creating a slide show, or editing a video. It has most of the feature Inshot has, but also offers Free Extentions, stock images and a few more tunes.
Quick. Another cool app to play with to create slide shows. It provides different templates with transitions and layouts, music, fonts and filters.
Ever wondered how to create a black and white image with a pop of color in the same picture? This app does exactly that. Use it to create an eye catching image of your furniture, or a picture with a quote and fun design for your social media. This app would be fun to play with to edit family pictures for your gallery wall too!
It is important to create an easy on the eye text to complement your beautiful photo. This app includes such features as: breaking your text into paragraphs, space them in between, paragraph editing. The only thing I would personally improve about the app is the charachter limit count for Instagram.
This small part of Instagram is being overlooked big time. These are as important as your beautiful informative posts. Choose your signature style for your stories to complement your feed. Instagram offers a lot of options to create fun and entertaining content, but to step up your game, Animated stories app will help your to stand out of the crowd. Simple interface, beautiful designs, and, did i mention it is free?
And the last, but not the least, Garny. This app allows you to see what your feed would look like in perspective and schedule your posts. Nothing makes your profile more appealing and organized, than planning and strategizing. I'm guilty of not using it enough because of my impulse posting (sometimesyou just have to share right now😂), but it does make a difference, when your feed is organized and being thought through.
I hope all these little helpers are going to be useful, bring you many followers, and make yourself proud of how beautiful your work is!