Today we are going to talk about watermarking your photos from within your phone. That is, how to watermark your photos before you post them to Instagram or even to any social media. We are also going to talk about getting your photos Square-Ready at the end of this post, so be sure to read all the way to the end!
*rubs hands* Okay! Let’s get started!
First of all, which app to use for watermarking?
There are a ton of apps that will apply text but I don’t recommend them for watermarking, mainly because you’d need to add the text that you’d like to watermark your photo with each and every time. Like, type in each letter…. m-e-r-i-a-h – space- n-i-c-h-o-l-s. Call me lazy but that’s a lot of work for every*single*photo, every*single*time.
I recommend the iWatermark app.
There is a lite version (- free, with fewer options, but it will give you a sense of how compatible you are with it) and a full-priced version (which I think is a a couple of dollars, or the price of a small coffee).
I recommend this app for the following reasons:
- You can watermark a LOT of photos in one batch
- You can create and save different watermarks
- You can even create graphic watermarks! Like, your own signature!
- It’s both droid an iPhone compatible – but since I have an iPhone, this tutorial will be using it, not the droid
Okay, let’s get started.
Go into the app store (iPhone or iPad); search for and download iWatermark
When you open it, you’ll have 5 options: Select Photo (s), Take Photo, iWatermark Photo, Create Text Watermark, Create Graphic Watermark, but that’s kind of a trick because you can only actually open the top 2 choices: Select Photo (s) or Take Photo! Crafty little app, huh. But that’s cuz they want you to be working with an actual photo from the get-go.
Select Photo (s) is to choose a photo from your phone camera roll
Take Photo is to open the app camera and take a photo immediately, which you will subsequently watermark
I choose Select Photo (s).
Then I select ‘Camera Roll’
Now, here is one of the great things about this app: YOU CAN SELECT ALL OF THE PHOTOS THAT YOU WANT.
You check off 5, 10, 20 photos – however many you want.
For this tutorial, I’m not going to go nuts; I’m just going to select 3 photos:
There we go. Then press “done”
Then your 5 choices come up again, only this time YOU CAN ACTUALLY CHOOSE ANY OF THEM!
Here’s the breakdown:
iWatermark Photo: for when you actually have watermarks created (- so use this after you have watermarks created)
Create Text Watermark: for creating your text watermarks
Create Graphic Watermark: for creating your signature as a watermark or uploading your logo, etc as your watermark
Step One: Create Text Watermark
1. You can only select “Text”, so go ahead and select it!
Type in what you want for your watermark. (- usually just your name or the name of your blog/site)
Here’s Meriah Nichols, With a Little Moxie
Oops! I think I want a copyright circle in the front! So I’ll pause in front of my name and add it there!
I love this thing. So easy.
Okay, now it’s time for font and editing
I select “Font”, then sort of get lost in my fontasy-land…
This thing is a little ridiculously fun. You can automatically preview how it looks with any given font, so it’s FUN, FUN, FUN! You can also “bold” it, “italic” or “shadow” your text (see the buttons below the font menu). Select “OK” when you like the font
But wait. I want another colour.
Okay, so I go back to “Edit”, and select “Color” (they don’t spell “colour” with a “u”).
I want plain white, so I go with that.
All colours (“colour” with a “u”! ) are available – the entire range, full spectrum. You can adjust the colour bar too, to get the brightness of the hue *just so*. Don’t say this thing doesn’t do it all!
I like my watermark like this, looking kind of handwritten and not glaring IN YOUR FACE, so I’ll stick with it. But I want it smaller.
So I go back to ‘Edit’
Slide it down to a respectable 17pt
Back to the main screen and I just top my watermark on the screen and drag it down to where I want it (the bottom).
But you know what? I think I want my watermark on the SIDE, not at the bottom. So I go back to “Edit’, and go to ‘Position’.
This is how I want it to look, I AM DONE, so I hit the old “Save & Exit”
And here is the another truly excellent feature of this app: YOU SAVE THE WATERMARK.
You do not need to create a watermark each and every time; just once, exactly as you would like your watermark. Put the time in to get it perfect. Then save it!
I save the watermark clearly with what the watermark actually is and the font so that it’s easy to select for the future.
Save & Exit.
I hit okay.
Then, I can either go ahead and watermark all of my photos now or I can ‘Create Graphic Watermark’.
Since this is a tutorial and not real life, I’m going to ‘Create a Graphic Watermark’ (in real life, I would just watermark my photos with the watermark I just created and let it all be)
In Creating a Graphic Watermark, you have 4 choices: Image, Paste, QR Code, Scan Signature.
Here’s what it all means:
Image: this is where you will be led back to your phone’s photo roll and you can select an image from your phone to watermark your photo with. Want to watermark with a photo of your art? With a photo of your foot? With a photo of your pet robot, Hugh? Here’s your chance!
Paste: this is for your clipboard. If you have saved an image on your phone and you want to directly paste it in
QR Code: yeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah. Now we are REALLY geeking out! If you open that one up, you can generate YOUR VERY OWN QR Code (and Mom, a QR Code is that thing that looks like total gibberish that you scan and read with your iPhone – like this:
(reading: “Meriah Nichols”)
Scan Signature: super exciting for those of us that like this sort of thing.
Since I think the first 3 are super self-explanatory, I’m going to focus on the one that can be tricky but which is supremely cool: the Scan Signature (- and if you have ANY QUESTIONS about using the others – or at all, please utilize the “Dear Moxie’s Mama” form for your app/watermarking questions)
So, Scan Signature. After you select it, it opens up the app camera, ready to “scan” your signature (- it’s really taking a photo, not scanning! but whatever!). Have it ready.
Here’s my scrawly handwriting.
Now this is the tricky part – you really need to do this in GOOD LIGHT, and see how I angled it so that there is very little space on the sides? You want that. Good light and a good angle are going to make a difference between something like this:
– With all that dark scratchy nonsense, or this:
Which is a hell of a lot cleaner, isn’t it?
Okay, so TAKE YOUR TIME. You want to get this right.
Shoot “scan” it in good light and a good angle.
While I like the overall look of this, I want it to be positioned on the bottom, not top. So I open “Edit”, then I hit “Position” and click on the Horizontal Bottom option.
That’s okay, but the size! That makes it hard to see the photo!
Hit “Edit” again, open it up, click on “Size”
Much better. But the position is awkward. Here, I just take my finger and swipe it down to reposition
Works. I like it. So I click on “Save and Exit”
I name the watermark, again something that I can remember (haha). After saving it, the app closes that frame automatically and we find ourselves back to the main choices again!
Now how about watermarking the original 3 photos? (did you even remember that there were 3 photos to watermark?! ).
This time, you select “iWatermark Photo”
It automatically watermarks with the last created and saved watermark
If you don’t want that one, just scroll down to another one that you’ve created!
I think it’s all pretty straightforward. I always just choose the first option “Save to Camera Roll”
It saves the photo, then goes right on to the next photo. You don’t need to do ANY-THING
See where the watermark is though? Yeah. Nah. I don’t want that there. Or that watermark even.
I select “Watermarks”
I choose the one that I want
Then I position it with my finger and hit “Save”
See? It starts happening really fast. It’s like it goes on auto and starts watermarking and all you have to do is agree or disagree with what’s going on.
Yes – that one~! SAVE; No, that one, okay, SAVE!
For this photo, it’s already got the graphic watermark on it, I think that’s a good fit, so I keep it, just swiping it down with my finger to a different location. Done.
NOW THIS IS IMPORTANT!
The iWatermark app does not crop or make your photos ready for the Instagram square format. If you want to watermark your photos for Instagram (and then share through Instagram to Facebook/Twitter/Tumblr), you should crop or make your photos square-ready BEFORE you watermark them. If you don’t do that, you might easily end up watermarking an area of the photo that will end up cropped and the whole thing is going to look weird. So just deal with the resizing first.
How to do that?
Lots of ways. We’ll get into that next week with some editing apps, but for now, how about meeting nice, easy and free Square Ready?
This app is easy. It just makes your images square.
Follow their little arrows. 1 – choose photo, 2 – make it square-ready and 3- save it!
When you are done and hit “3 – save/export” , you will have some choices
Like before, I recommend just saving it to your camera roll.
Then you choose your image size, which is kind of cool. I usually go for the lower end, to keep upload speed manageable.
And THAT IS IT!
Hopefully this will get you going on watermarking your photos and keeping them safer. Remember these tips:
- Keep the watermark in a visible place where it cannot be cropped out without destroying the image
- A watermark isn’t a guarantee that your photo will not be stolen – but if your photo IS stolen, it’s easier to pursue copyright infringement when a watermark is looking right at you
This was a kind of long tutorial but once you get the hang of it, you’ll be in and out of watermarking your photos in a couple of minutes, tops. You just have to practice!
Questions? Ask Moxie’s Mama!