Behind-the-Scenes of My Blog Makeover + Big Plans for the Future

As you may have noticed, SarahDonawerth.com got a face lift. And by face lift, I mean I tore the whole thing apart, build it piece by piece, and tried to get it as perfect as possible for all of you. This is the big unveiling. Ta Da!

First, my header image is different. I figure, if the blog is named after me, I should probably share what I look like. I’m a pretty private person and I hate pictures of myself, so I opted for a very artistic version of a self portrait. Amazingly enough, I did the entire thing in PicMonkey!

How to Make A Distressed Self Portrait:

Choose a neutral background, such as a plain wall, or hang a white bed sheet. This will make it easier to retouch your photo in the following steps.

Next, get dressed and made-up however you like. Choose at least one area that you would like to recolor. I chose my red lipstick.

Setup your camera on a tripod. A Bluetooth Wireless Camera Remote Control is a lifesaver here. I didn’t have any additional hands to help me shoot the photos, but I was able to do it all myself with just a click of the remote. All it takes is a moment to sync the Bluetooth connection.

Shoot plenty of full color images to work with in high-resolution. I shot over 100 images, but oddly enough, liked the first one I shot.

Step 1

Yes, the lighting is terrible. Yes, you can still see the Bluetooth remote in my hand, but everything is fixable in PicMonkey!

PicMonkey is a great site that is so easy to use. I have no skill with photography, but PicMonkey transforms all my terrible photos to presentable, beautiful shots that I can be proud of. They also offer their services for a reasonable price, less than the cost of a meal at In-N-Out!

Next, I removed the background. That can be better explained by this tutorial from PicMonkey.

At this point, my photo looked like this:

Step 2 Removed Background

Next, click on Effects in PicMonkey, then find “Black and White.” Apply the black and white effect, then click on the brush icon, adjust the size, and recolor the pieces that you want to be in color.

Now, it looks like this:

Step 3

To finish, save what you have so far, then open up PicMonkey in the Design tab. Open your photo, position it on the screen, and select under “Blend Modes” the Hardlight function. Now, it should look like this:

Step 4 Final Retouched Image

And that’s how I made my new header image!

Here’s What’s Coming to SarahDonawerth.com:

I will always have DIYs and craft projects on my site. That will not change, but I will be adding the occasional posts on Fashion, Artful Living, and Favorite Things.

  • Fashion: From vintage-inspired ensembles to DIY fashion upcycles, I’ll be exploring ways to be creative when styling an outfit.
  • Artful Living: Ways to infuse creativity into your everyday life and learning to appreciate the life you have.
  • My Favorite Things: Get my recommendations for new crafting supplies, themed collections, novelty items, and more.

That’s what you have to look forward to! Subscribe to my email newsletter so that you never miss a new post!

Blogging, Crafts / DIY, Uncategorized
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  • Debbie Schaefer
    April 6, 2016 at 3:41 pm

    Love PicMonkey but have never tried this technique – I will have to try this now! Love the resulting image. Love your new header.

    • Sarah
      April 6, 2016 at 6:22 pm

      Thank you so much! I’ve also been playing around with their double exposure techniques and the results are beautiful!