Before we get to the details of that template, it’s worth noting that Google+ still hasn’t gained the kind of traction that everyone assumed a juggernaut like Google could and would achieve. It’s slowly catching on for some, but completely avoided by others. The jury is still out, and Google will undoubtedly keep tinkering with the layout. That means any customization you make could end up needing a bit more customization down the road. But the truth is these things aren’t that hard to update, so there’s really no excuse for not having a profile page that shows off who you really are. Or just showcases your beautiful photos. So let’s get to it.
The first thing you need to know about your Google+ profile image is that it can be HUGE. In fact, it’s probably easy to make it too huge. The maximum size is a whopping 2120 x 1192 pixels. I don’t recommend filling all of that space unless you have an image that absolutely deserves to take up that many pixels. Heck, you may not even have many images that will look wonderful at that size, so it may make sense to not take it to the max. I’ve provided you with a half-sized template, but you can always make a new Pixlr Editor image that is the maximum size. The most important thing to know isn’t really the pixel size. Just make sure your image has a 16:9 size ratio. Not sure how to calculate ratios? Try this handy Aspect Ratio Calculator.
Here are a few acceptable sizes based on the 16:9 ratio:
Maximum: 2120 x 1192
Half size: 1060 x 596
Minimum: 480 x 270
Visitors won’t always see it in all its glory
The second thing you need to know (if you didn’t already) is that only a portion of your image will regularly be seen when people load your profile page. Although viewers of your page can easily pull down the image to see more, they typically won’t see it all. This gives you an obvious opportunity to put something compelling in that small visible strip to encourage people to view the whole thing, but then again Google has added a gradation to the bottom strip where your avatar appears. I personally don’t like this gradation and think it looks kind of gaudy, but there’s no way to remove it (that I’m aware of). You’ll see in my template that I’ve indicated where the avatar strip starts and ends.
It shrinks to fit
Another important detail to consider is that the design is responsive. That is, it will shrink to fit the size of the device it’s viewed on. So will your image. You can see this at work by simply resizing your browser window. Unlike your Facebook timeline photo, the other elements on the page will move around (e.g., “add to circles” button), so don’t bother trying to work around — or work in — those details. Google doesn’t really give you the opportunity like Facebook does to make a clever image with your avatar working in conjunction with other elements of the page. But of course there’s nothing wrong with just displaying a pretty picture. If you’ve got an image that fits this massive space well, grab the Pixlr template and make it so.
My solution: Make an image with effects I love
All of this could affect the type of image you choose. Since you won’t be able to achieve an absolute location, you may be better off with a pretty design, a beautiful landscape, a nice macro shot, or just something that you’ve worked up with effects and overlays and borders that you like. That’s what I did. Since I live in San Francisco, it’s an excuse to take that beautiful Golden Gate Bridge and work it up in Pixlr Express with some of my favorite effects.
Want to create a maximum-sized image but don’t have any images that size? Remember those wallpaper sites where you could download creative designs and photos for your desktop? They’re still around and could be great places to find images to use for your Google+ profile.
We’ve been waiting breathlessly to hear the results of the Best App Ever Awards. Turns out we weren’t the best ever. But we were pretty close!
Every year, the Best App Ever Awards recognizes exceptional iOS and Android apps. In past years, we were thrilled to see Pixlr-o-matic (our first Android app ever) win for Best Photo Editing App. We were just as thrilled to see Pixlr Express (our second Android app ever) nominated this time around.
We didn’t take the gold this year, but we did take third place. Bronze can be prettier than gold when the light strikes it just right.
This is wonderful for us because it means that a whole bunch of our customers took time out of their day to think about Pixlr and vote for us. We humbly thank you for always saying and doing such nice things. We’re blessed with some very nice people using our apps.
Customize Your Facebook Profile Timeline with a Pixlr Template
Why haven’t you customized your Facebook profile timeline image? If you haven’t, we’re about to make it incredibly easy.
We recently noticed a few people asking about the dimensions for modifying their Facebook profiles in our support forum. To make it easier for anyone who wants to create a truly unique timeline header, we’ve put together a simple, straightforward Pixlr template. This can be useful to help make sure the image you want to use fits the area exactly the way you want it to. Or, if you’re up for a little creativity, it can help you make an image that works in tandem with your avatar.
If you’re not familiar with it, this file is a .pxd file. That’s Pixlr’s native file format. You can open this template in Pixlr and work with each of the separate layers.
Facebook has changed these timeline profile image dimensions a few times; these dimensions are the most current as of the time of this writing.
Once you’ve composed the image you want, hide or remove the avatar, overlays, thoughts, text layers, etc. Then, flatten your image. Your final product will be one simple image that is 851x315 pixels. We recommend saving it as a PNG or JPG when you’re done.
Are you up for this creative challenge? You can base yours on the silly one I created with a cloud thought bubble, but there are tons of incredibly wonderful examples out there to learn from. So get cracking. When you’re done, let us know. We’d love to see what you’ve made!
Flickr has always been the go-to spot for both pro and amateur photographers, but at one time it was the spot where seemingly everyone went to not just share photos but to have conversations that sprung out of the enjoyment of photos. Until Yahoo bought Flickr and put it on auto-pilot.
We’ve always been fans of Flickr (still Pro members!). To show our support for them — and to create an easy place for our customers to share their photos — we recently created a new Pixlr on Flickr group. It’s open to anyone, so please feel free to join us and share your Pixlr Editor, Pixlr Express, or Pixlr-o-matic photos.
Pixlr Pic of the Day
We’re already seeing some amazing things being shared, and we want to highlight the absolute best of these images you’ve created. Each day, we choose one that blows us away with its beauty or creativity and post it here. We also share that photo on our three Pixlr Facebook Pages, which means that if your photos is chosen potentially 2.5 million (Pixlr-o-matic is about to hit 2M!) of our Facebook Fans could see it. It’s a way for us to see your most creative work — and a great way for you to get recognized.
Want to join in and post your best, most creative, most super beautiful Pixlr photos? You are so totally invited! You’ll need a Flickr account, which we’re guessing quite a few of you already have. If you haven’t used it in awhile, dust it off and start uploading your best Pixlr created or edited snaps. We’re dying to see what you’ve created.
Pixlr Express Plus version 1.2 for iOS adds text and stickers
Since we introduced Pixlr Express about six months ago, we’ve been bringing some of the more popular details and features of the web-based version to your smartphone. The last update for the iPhone and iPad (in March) added the Vibrance tool and beefed up Color Splash. This time around, we’re bringing two of the most popular tools people have been asking for to the iPhone and iPad: text and stickers.
The text options on Pixlr Express for the web have always been a huge hit. People love the many unique, script-y font choices, and now you can add text, resize it, and experiment with fonts directly on your iPhone. Each font pack can be downloaded separately, and you can pick your favorites for easy access later if you like. It’s very similar to the way Pixlr Express works on the web, so you should be able to get started with this quite easy if you’ve ever used it on the web.
The second big addition to the iPhone version of Pixlr Express Plus are stickers. You can now slap whimsical stickers onto your photos. Resize them with your fingers, rotate them, or use the fade control to change the opacity. My favorite stickers are the comic book style Bam! Pow! stickers, so I’ve loaded up my favorites with those. And the cute Kawaii stickers of happy cupcakes and smiling clouds are completely irresistible.
We’ll undoubtedly be adding more to Pixlr Express Plus, both for iOS and Android. We’ll keep you posted about new updates as they happen. If you’re an iPhone user, download the Pixlr Express Plus 1.2 version today and start trying out these new features. Pixlr Express Plus is a free app, so of course the update is free, too.
Never tried Pixlr Express Plus for iOS? It’s free. Get it here.
Upgrade to Pixlr Express 1.2 for Android — Stickers!
We released a new version of Pixlr Express for Android today. The update was an opportunity to fix a few very simple bugs, but it was also a chance for us to introduce stickers to the Android version of the app.
Stickers are something that appear in the Pixlr Express web version, and it’s been a very popular feature. People love their stickers, and we’ve been hearing requests to include something similar in the mobile versions. Like the Pixlr Express web version, the Pixlr Express Android stickers are a lot of seasonal, whimsical, and fun images. My favorites are the comic book BAM! and POW! style stickers. If you’re familiar with stickers on the web version of Pixlr Express, you’ll be happy to see something similar make its way to the web version.
That’s the latest update. We’ll keep you posted on future updates for Android and iPhone. If you aren’t already a Pixlr Express for Android user, you can get the new version 1.2 for free on the Google Play Store.