4 free tools to improve your visual content

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Written by: Aili
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Calling all visual content creators! Quick! Complete this sentence: Making attractive visual content requires…

What came to mind? Time? Money? Imagination?

The reality is that most great things come at a cost, and high-quality visual content has always been expensive or time consuming to create. But that’s changing.

The emergence of free tools, resources, and templates has created free short cuts for marketers, graphic designers, educators, professionals… for anyone looking to make a good impression.

In this post, we’ll take a look at 4 tools that can help you take your game as a visual content creator to the next level, saving you time, energy, and money. First, let’s take a quick look at the current standard for stunning content.

What’s trending

Before you skip down to the tools below, you’ll want to have a clear picture of what you’re going for and to make sure that your content feels relevant and fresh. Here’s one thing you’ll want to keep in mind: Static content is on its way out.

Interactive content is taking over. Not ready to take our word for it? The proof is well, everywhere.

Netflix is adding interactive TV series and movies to their catalog, immersive tech and AI are on the rise, and commercials are gamifying their content.

Make sure your new tools and platforms fit into an interactive model so that you can make the switch if you haven’t already.

Is one tool enough?

Yes and no. 

Some tools can do it all, but there’s always a next level. Combining tools is the best way to get the most out of your time and resources, taking advantage of the strong points of each or using resource platforms to embellish creations assembled with a content creation tool.

Here the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

Without further ado, here are 4 free tools that will take your content to the next level.

4 tools for a bigger impact

Pixabay for a wide range of resources

Pixabay

Pixabay is a free resource library with everything from photos to vector graphics, illustrations,  music, and  video clips. The wide range of formats available make it an especially effective platform for finding all the resources a visual content creator needs in one go. 

Plus, all the content available there is released under Pixabay’s own license, which makes it safe to use for free even for commercial purposes. While you can certainly attribute the artist if you’d like, it’s not a legal requirement, which can be nice when creating professional content where the artist information may distract from your main message.

Colorcinch for photo editing

Colorcinch tool

Imagine you’d like to use your own images for your content or have found some on a resource library site that feel almost right but that don’t quite pop. WIsh you could make some quick adjustments? Colorcinch is your tool.

Use the tool to adjust the contrast, sharpness,  and brightness of your images, add masks to them to alter their tonality, and even add cartoon-like effects to make sure they can hold their own.

Giphy for movement through GIFs

Giphy

Giphy is our go-to site for GIFs, and hear us out; GIFs can be used for basically anything regardless of the level of professional polish you’re going for. Obviously if you’re looking to reference your favorite TV series or make a joke, GIFs offer great visuals for comedic impact. But what if you’re prepping a serious ad or client pitch? GIFs are a great tool for that also.

Files with a .gif format contain moving images or short videos. This means that a GIF can be an effective way of shaking things up and increasing visual interest. They can be stretched out to create motion backgrounds for your content and can also serve as smaller animated pieces such as icons. 

You can choose Giphy’s embed option to add GIFs to your content or you can search for GIFs within platforms like Genially  that partner with Giphy and that do the inserting for you.

How can you add GIFs from Giphy in Genially?

Read more

Genially for interactivity

Genially panel

You’ve gathered together the components of your content and are ready to put them together to make something great. Genially is a perfect platform for making the magic happen.

Genially allows you to add interactivity and animation effects to any element of your creation. You can add buttons (or turning elements into clickable ones) to facilitate navigation from one page of a creation to another and insert videos, images, GIFs (like the ones from Giphy), Google maps, PDFs, and more.

It also provides thousands of templates for you to choose from as well as the option to start from scratch. 

How they work together

Add visual effects to your images with Colorcinch and then head over to Genially. Choose a template or start from the ground up. In the Genially Editor, you’ll be able to put all your elements together, creating interactive imagesinfographics, pitches, microsites, guides, and ads you can insert GIFs, Pixabay images, and other elements into. 

Plus, both Giphy and Pixabay are Genially partners, and their libraries can be accessed from within Genially’s Editor within the Images tab.

All clear? If not, feel free to check out Genially’s Help Center for tutorials or go to the Genially Academy to sign up for free courses on everything from Genially, to instructional and graphic design. You can go at your own pace. All you’ll need is a free Genially account to enroll.

Are any of these tools new to you as a visual content creator? Let us know in the comments!

Aili
Aili
Edtech and music enthusiast
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