Can your community use a dash of panache?
One great way to add visual interest and update your community site is to include eye-catching photos. But what if you're not Ansel Adams?
Not to worry. As a photography challenged writer, I am intimately familiar with this problem. The great news is that there are tons of free and cheap resources out there to help you achieve photographic greatness.
Get it here: http://instagram.com/
Instagram is the app that launched a thousand dinner photos. But you can also use it to create cool effects and snap quick candid pictures for your community. Because it has a social component, it might be cool to use it to take photos at your next community meetup! (And did you know that Hoop.la includes optional Instagram integration in the member profiles?)
Price: Free (or buy add-ons)
Get it here: http://pixlr.com/o-matic/
This nifty little app (web and mobile) includes tons of effects, overlays, and other darkroom features. Very easy to use!
Get it here: http://kitcamapp.com/
It's not free, but I love the ability to live preview the lenses, and the easy slider for contrast/balance. You can also do video with this one.
Get it here: http://overgram.co/
This is how you can start to participate in memes, or create your own. Overgram allows you to instantly add text, with fonts and colors, to any photo (from your library or a new shot), along with other goodies. Simple and effective.
Price: $ 0.99
My current favorite photo doodad. What would take you 20 minutes in Photoshop can be handled in a matter of seconds on Color Splash, right on your phone. Boom. Allows you to isolate the color (or grey) any portion of a photo with your finger (see the fishie above). Best 99 cents I've spent lately.
Where can you use these pretty pictures on your community site?
Header graphics, forum icons, avatars, embedded in blog posts or forum topics, background images, shared over to your social outposts, basically everywhere!
I hope this sparked some creative juices...please share your own favorite photo editing apps here. I love new shiny objects!