As a content creator for your parish, it is important that you have the right tools to get the job done properly. We’ve compiled a sampling of easily accessible and user-friendly options to empower you to create some beautiful imagery - buttons, banners, and other custom graphics - for your parish website and social media campaigns.
- Canva https://www.canva.com/
Canva is a graphic design platform that allows users to create social media graphics, presentations, posters, and other visual content. It is available on web and mobile and integrates millions of images, fonts, templates, and illustrations. Canva can be used for free but will require a premium upgrade to unlock more features such as more design templates or the ability to organize your designs.
- BeFunky https://www.befunky.com/
BeFunky is a powerful web-based and mobile photo editor for creating stunning, professional-quality images with a single click. BeFunky can be used for free but will require a premium upgrade to unlock more features.
- Adobe Spark https://spark.adobe.com/
For creating designs effortlessly, Adobe Spark is an easy-to-use platform that lets you create images in a matter of minutes. This is ideal for graphic designers who are already familiar with the Adobe Suite of tools. Adobe Spark requires a paid subscription.
Images account for the majority of data transferred on a webpage and thus must be optimized. Optimization is the process of reducing the file size of your website’s images and graphics as much as possible without sacrificing quality so that your page load times remain low. An optimized website is essential for a positive user experience and to help with keeping hosting costs low.
There are many products, both software, and web-based for optimizing images. Here is a selection of some from which you could choose:
- BIRME https://birme.net
BIRME is an easy to use, web-based, bulk image resizer. It can resize your images to any specific dimension and crop them proportionately if necessary. BIRME is absolutely free to use.
- BeFunky https://www.befunky.com/create
BeFunky's bulk image resizer can resize hundreds of photos at the same time.
- ImageOptim https://imageoptim.com/mac
ImageOptim reduces image file sizes simply by dragging and dropping images into its window. ImageOptim software is only available for MAC.
Though there are many sites online that provide free stock imagery, it should be said that there is no better imagery to enhance your parish’s online presence than your own community photos. Enlisting the help of a parishioner or two who have a natural eye for great, well-composed and well-lit photography, and using those photos as buttons, slider images, lead images for articles, can build a greater connection between your parish’s online ministry and its visitors.
If you do require additional resources for stock imagery, here are a few that you may find useful.
Note: since many free stock imagery sites are a platform for amateur photographers to display and share their work, some of the imagery displayed in searches may be indecent in subject matter. Therefore, user discretion is strongly advised.
- Pexels https://www.pexels.com/
A collection of free high-resolution stock photos. No attribution required.
- Unsplash https://unsplash.com/
Free high-resolution images and photos. No attribution required.
- Pixabay https://pixabay.com/
A collection of free, high-resolution photos. No attribution required.
- iStock https://www.istockphoto.com/
High-resolution royalty-free stock photos and images. iStock does require a paid subscription.
For more information to improve your parish’s web presence, check out our other articles at support.goarch.org or contact us at the Department of Internet Ministries at internet.goarch.org !