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Free Photo Editing with PicMonkey: Before and After Pics

Updated on August 25, 2015
Free Photo Editing with PicMonkey. Overlays: Paper Scrap. Text: Schoolbell.
Free Photo Editing with PicMonkey. Overlays: Paper Scrap. Text: Schoolbell. | Source

Have you tried PicMonkey?

It's a free online photo editing website that's just too much fun! It's easy to use, and most features are free (Royale membership ($33 a year) gets you additional cool effects, fonts, overlays, and textures, but I just use the free version).

With PicMonkey you can:

  • make collages
  • apply virtual cosmetics and teeth whitening
  • add text to your photos
  • use a variety of overlays to create a cool effect
  • enhance your photos
  • frame your photos
  • create logos
  • share your pics on Facebook
  • create holiday cards etc.

So I decided to make a photo hub with examples of my (pic)monkeying around. I always loved before and after pictures, so this is my photo editing debut as a PicMonkey enthusiast.

Before

A shot of the August 2014 supermoon taken in San Diego, CA, at the La Jolla beach.
A shot of the August 2014 supermoon taken in San Diego, CA, at the La Jolla beach. | Source

After

Editing: sharpen, crop. Effects: Boost. Textures: Water. Overlay: Sparkle Stars. Frame: Museum Matte.
Editing: sharpen, crop. Effects: Boost. Textures: Water. Overlay: Sparkle Stars. Frame: Museum Matte. | Source

Before

A Russian boy named Seraphim playing with leaves on a warm autumn day in Moscow. October 2013.
A Russian boy named Seraphim playing with leaves on a warm autumn day in Moscow. October 2013. | Source

After

Effects: Orton, Boost, Cinerama. Textures: Burst
Effects: Orton, Boost, Cinerama. Textures: Burst | Source

Before

A picture of red roses my husband gave me. It's over-exposed because I'm trying out my new external flash.
A picture of red roses my husband gave me. It's over-exposed because I'm trying out my new external flash. | Source

After

Effects: Orton, Frost, Yester-color. Themes: Sweethearts, Bokeh Hearts. Text: Emily's Candy. Frame: Film Edge.  The quote is by a wonderful Lebanese writer Khalil Gibran.
Effects: Orton, Frost, Yester-color. Themes: Sweethearts, Bokeh Hearts. Text: Emily's Candy. Frame: Film Edge. The quote is by a wonderful Lebanese writer Khalil Gibran. | Source

Before

New York City from a waterfront restaurant in Queens. June 2013.
New York City from a waterfront restaurant in Queens. June 2013. | Source

After

Basic edits: Crop, Sharpen. Effects: Orton, Cinerama, Lomo. Textures: Burst. Theme: Vampires. Overlays: Moons, Bats. The bats add an eerie effect, but the Moon is the real eye-catcher.
Basic edits: Crop, Sharpen. Effects: Orton, Cinerama, Lomo. Textures: Burst. Theme: Vampires. Overlays: Moons, Bats. The bats add an eerie effect, but the Moon is the real eye-catcher. | Source

Before

A picture of a woman I found on Pixabay. Her facial expression was perfect for what I had in mind.
A picture of a woman I found on Pixabay. Her facial expression was perfect for what I had in mind. | Source

After

I wanted to turn this lovely lady into a vampire. Here is how it turned out. Not bad, huh? Theme: Vampires (Alabaster Skin, Dark Shadows, Evil Eye Color, Blood Drops, Blood Splatters, Nosferatu Dawn, Moon).
I wanted to turn this lovely lady into a vampire. Here is how it turned out. Not bad, huh? Theme: Vampires (Alabaster Skin, Dark Shadows, Evil Eye Color, Blood Drops, Blood Splatters, Nosferatu Dawn, Moon). | Source

Before

An elephant at the Fasano Zoo Safari in Southern Italy. July 2009.
An elephant at the Fasano Zoo Safari in Southern Italy. July 2009. | Source

After

Effects: Radiance. Texture: Space. Color: Orton, Dusk. Text: Unkempt. Elephants do rule!
Effects: Radiance. Texture: Space. Color: Orton, Dusk. Text: Unkempt. Elephants do rule! | Source

Before

My Jack Russell terriers at the dog park, romancing a chihuahua.
My Jack Russell terriers at the dog park, romancing a chihuahua. | Source

After

Editing tools used: crop, sharpen. Effects: Dusk and Boost (25%). Overlay: Comic bubbles. Text: Sweet Nothings.
Editing tools used: crop, sharpen. Effects: Dusk and Boost (25%). Overlay: Comic bubbles. Text: Sweet Nothings. | Source

Before

The hilltop village of Oia in Santorini, Greece, after sunset. September 2014.
The hilltop village of Oia in Santorini, Greece, after sunset. September 2014. | Source

After

I wanted to create a festive postcard look with this image. Basic Edits: Rotate, Highlights 85%, Saturation 20%. Effects: Boost 10%. Overlays: Postal. Text: La Belle Aurore, Luckiest Guy. Frames: Shape Cutouts (square).
I wanted to create a festive postcard look with this image. Basic Edits: Rotate, Highlights 85%, Saturation 20%. Effects: Boost 10%. Overlays: Postal. Text: La Belle Aurore, Luckiest Guy. Frames: Shape Cutouts (square). | Source

How to Make a Photo Collage with PicMonkey

I love making collages. A collage allows you to create a unique "bouquet" of images that compliment each other. It's like instant art. And with PicMonkey, it's so easy and fun!

  • First, you go to PicMonkey’s homepage and hover over a button that says "Collage".
  • Pick your photos (tip: you can select multiple photos at once if you press and hold the Control button on your keyboard).
  • Choose your layout. This is really neat because you have a variety of cool layouts, from a traditional card layout to a Facebook cover or even Pinterest-friendly layout!
  • Drag photos into your layout. You can also add new cells, background color, adjust spacing and corners, and resize your photos any way you want.
  • When you're done arranging your images, click "Edit" to add text, overlays, and other personalized touches. There's no going back after you click "Edit," so make sure you're happy with your collage and ready to move on to the next stage.
  • Pro tip: with PicMonkey you can also add a watermark to protect your image from unauthorized use. Read the tutorial here.

Collage

I created this nature collage after a trip to Jamaica. I didn't use a lot of "tricks,"  just a simple Square Deal layout and light pink background. Effects: Orton. Text: Chunk Five. Blend mode: Overlay.
I created this nature collage after a trip to Jamaica. I didn't use a lot of "tricks," just a simple Square Deal layout and light pink background. Effects: Orton. Text: Chunk Five. Blend mode: Overlay. | Source

How to Create a Professional Profile Pic with PicMonkey

A picture is worth a thousand words. This notion is especially true for your self-representation in the freelance writing world. But even if you're not a freelance writer, the right picture can do wonders for your profiles on LinkedIn and other professional networks.

PicMonkey has the tools to turn your mediocre selfies into striking self-portraits any employer would be impressed with.

  • First, select a flattering picture of yourself, preferably with a neutral background and wearing a professional outfit according to the career you want.
  • It has to be an authentic representation of you, where your true personality shines through, so don't try to look too "academic" or mysterious if it's not who you are in real life. Photos with a relaxed, natural smile are best.
  • Try not to use profile pictures from other social media sites. Your professional profiles have an entirely different purpose from your social media profiles. Your profile pic should reflect that.
  • Crop your image to a square that displays only your head and shoulders.
  • Now you're ready for some professional editing with PicMonkey. If you're a writer or any other intellectual professional, black and white portraits give you this great timeless look. With PicMonkey you can go to the "Effects" tab, and click Black and White (free feature), or click Daguerreotype and select “Brady” (premium feature) Whoah! You instantly look like Hemingway.
  • For a softer look, go to the "Effects" tab, and click Orton, Tranquil or Soften.

Profile Pics Edited with PicMonkey

This picture doesn't scream "writer" and it is my Facebook profile pic, but I'm using it as an example of what you can do. The first image is edited with the Orton effect, the second - with Soften, and the third one with the Daguerreotype effect.
This picture doesn't scream "writer" and it is my Facebook profile pic, but I'm using it as an example of what you can do. The first image is edited with the Orton effect, the second - with Soften, and the third one with the Daguerreotype effect. | Source

Thanks For Your Feedback!

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    • Jasmeetk profile image

      Jasmeet Kaur 

      2 years ago from India

      enjoyed your hub..

    • kalinin1158 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lana Adler 

      2 years ago from California

      Thank you peachpurple!!

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 

      2 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      thanks for the instructions and I really like the way you change the pictures

    • kalinin1158 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lana Adler 

      2 years ago from California

      Thank you Ron! Using PicMonkey has been a really fun creative outlet for me, and I'm still just scratching the surface and learning new tricks every time I use it. Most of the time I just experiment with a bunch of different features until something I like comes out. The idea to add a water texture to that moon shot was a total accident btw, but it worked :)

    • kalinin1158 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lana Adler 

      2 years ago from California

      Thanks, Larry! At some point I'll probably buy the annual membership, but for now the free version will do :)

    • kalinin1158 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lana Adler 

      2 years ago from California

      You're welcome, PAINTDRIPS!

      Thank you, Bill. I'm honored that a well-traveled photography aficionado like yourself found my hub useful. I like playing with photos too, and I'm sure there are lots of photo editing tools out there, but PicMonkey is the one I use all the time, especially for HP.

    • kalinin1158 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lana Adler 

      2 years ago from California

      Mel, PicMonkey could be your chance of emancipation! For me editing photos is probably more fun than taking them because that is where the magic happens. A completely ordinary image can turn into an eye-catcher. Thanks for sharing! You're the BEST.

    • kalinin1158 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lana Adler 

      2 years ago from California

      Bill, a certain familiarity with photo editing does help, but even if it's all new to you, I think PicMonkey is pretty easy to learn. Just take it slow and have fun playing with it :)

    • kalinin1158 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lana Adler 

      2 years ago from California

      My pleasure, integrater. I've discovered it fairly recently, and I've got to say, it's pretty addicting!

    • kalinin1158 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lana Adler 

      2 years ago from California

      You're welcome Edgemaster! I've never used PicMonkey on iPad so I'll trust your word on it. I think in general it's easier to edit on a PC, imo.

    • RonElFran profile image

      Ronald E Franklin 

      2 years ago from Mechanicsburg, PA

      I really like what you did with the August moon photo. I've been using PicMonkey, but only for basic effects. This encourages me to go further.

    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 

      2 years ago from Oklahoma

      Thanks so much! I've really been needing access to some manner of photo editing software, preferably free.

      I'll give it a try.

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 

      2 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Svetlana. Thank you for sharing this. I had never heard of PicMonkey but I can myself using this. I love to "play" with my photos and this site looks like it has some great tools that can be used for free. Great job.

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image

      Denise McGill 

      2 years ago from Fresno CA

      Very interesting. Thanks for sharing!

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 

      2 years ago from San Diego California

      I have never heard of this, but it could be extremely useful. I struggle with photos, and mostly have my son do them for me if he is available. Great hub!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks for the tips. Somehow I suspect this requires more skill than I have, but I'll give it a try anyway.

    • integrater profile image

      Certified Noob 

      2 years ago

      I am aware of Picmonkey but never used it before, maybe I will take it out for a test ride now .

      Thank you for an excellent How-to hub.

    • Edgemaster profile image

      Edgemaster 

      2 years ago from Dallas

      Cool thanks for the link. I wish it wasn't in flash so I could use it on my Ipad on the go. I'm always looking for new ways to edit images.

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