How to Make Your Images Look More Unusual Using Cool Photo Effects

Cool Photo effects

Using Cool Photo Effects to Give Your Post Some Oomph is..!

Have you ever surfed the web and come across a post that has the exact same image that you’ve used on one of your posts?

And let’s say this post is on a competitor’s website? Hmm.

If this has never happened to you then you are lucky and possibly in the minority.

The truth is that so many people use royalty free images from stock photography sites – where you pay the fee and choose the photo – that the chance of someone else using a good/great photo is pretty high.

One way to stop this happening is to either pay a photographer (here’s an interesting list of possible ones ;)) to take some shots for you (probably outside of  the budget for most small businesses given the number of images you really need these days), or take the photos yourself.

This second option is a good one because then your images really are going to be original.

But there is another way

What about if you bought some stock images as you normally would, and then slightly altered them to give them a more individual look?

And what if this was very easy to do and took no time at all. Would that be of interest?

Daft question, right? Well, it’s not that tricky to do if you know where to go and what to do.

Here are some tips and examples and a 40 second video showing how you can do this.

#1 – Use colour if a different way

There are a lot of ways in which you can use colour to make your images look different.

Take this simple example of fruit here.

Perhaps you sell vegetables and fruit, or you have a recipe that contains lots of fruit

Bunch of fruitThis is the original photo #1

Then I applied a colour tint #2

And then I inverted the colours from the previous
stage #3

And there you have 3 quite different looking photos of fruit.

Or you can use some colours that are not normally found in nature. this will really make the image stand out, such as a blue cow (interesting thought) or a green sun.

If you’d like to be able to do this yourself, with our help you can find out more here.


#2 – Don’t always go for the obvious

Yes, okay, this does take a bit of thinking about, but it needn’t take long and can be a lot of fun.

For example – let’s say you want to convey a feeling of warmth and friendliness to accompany your post (for whatever reason).

The more obvious choices may be a group of people (friends) standing around laughing, a boy and girl walking and arms linked. You’ll see a few of these if you search on a stock image site.

Happy-doggyInstead, just let your mind conjure up some different images that represent friendliness/loyalty to you. How about:

  • two neighbours talking over a wall
  • or a great picture of a dog with a great big grin on it’s face. A bit like this one here!


#3 – Hone in on a detail

Here’s a hedge full of beautifully coloured leaves, which is fine as far as it goes.

Green Leaves

However, look how so much better this same photo looks, where it has been severely cropped. It gives the photo much more focus and as a result looks more professional, don’t you think?

Cropped leaves

#4 – Play around with different effects

There are lots of different effects that you can use these days at a click of a mouse. An example here could be using a filter.

It’s even more effective if you relate the filter (or effect) to the subject matter itself.Cool Photo Effects with Pears

You could use a poster effect filter on an image for a client or website that deals with art.

This would be very much more powerful than just using the original image.

Here’s an example – Pop Art Pears.

Or how about this example below..haven’t we seen that woman with her earrings somewhere before?


You can easily
set your images apart..


There are lots of different ways these days to stamp your uniqueness on images.

Just take a look at our 40 second video to give you more ideas.


If you’d like to be able to create funky images like this with our help, then CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT MORE.


PS. We’ve changed our commenting system from the WordPress default to Disqus. You may have noticed.
Now before you say anything, we were like you reading this now. “I’m not going to leave a comment on a Blog if I have to sign up for something”. That was me and Davina.

We felt the same way, BUT what we found was that once you have opened a Disqus account (it’s free), it is just so easy to have great interaction with other commenters, the  Blog owner, using Facebook or Twitter…

So please sign up for a Disqus account here now, come back and tell us what you think about the Blog post and Disqus. If you love it, hate it or are just plain indifferent. We’d like to know as we are testing the system. Thanks.

About The Author

Caroline Jones

I'm Caroline and I look to help small business owners create their own graphics by writing tutorials and tips on graphics editing software. I live in Wales , love Tartan and Coffee Ice Cream. You can read more about me here

  • I have to be honest – when I first read your title I wasn’t expecting anything this creative, but these are great – I’m going to pin this to my Blogging Bits board!

    • Now that IS interesting Janet. what should we have put in the title? We’re always looking to improve – and there’s plenty of room for that LOL. ould welcome your thoughts.

      • I don’t think your title is lacking – it’s just that so many people (including me) have blogged about enhancing your blog with images that I was expecting more of the same. You have really raised the bar!

  • These are great tips. I’ve actually been changing and editing my stock photos, mainly because I wanted them to be different. Sometimes I’ll add a quote, and other times I will zoom in on a part I like more.

    As for your Disqus question – I have to say I didn’t like Disqus the first time I had to use it, mainly because I felt like I had to create a profile (which you actually don’t have to). Now I love it because I’m always logged in when I’m on my computer, and the comment loads immediately.

    • HI Keri – that’s exactly what we are finding abut Disqus. Have you been using it for a while? For you, what’s the best thing about it?

      • I actually use Commentluv on my own site, but I use Disqus a lot when commenting on other sites. I’m going to stick with Commentluv for now, unless I have a sudden urge to change to Disqus. I actually prefer Disqus when commenting myself.

  • Lisa Mallis

    Don’t always go for the obvious – great tip! I love the idea of the dog to show friendliness. I really need to jump outside “my box” when creating graphics. Thanks for the great post – each time I stop here I get practical, easy to implement info!

    • Hi Lisa – I’m glad the post is giving you some ideas.

  • Delia @ Blog Formatting

    Great ideas to play with images, Caroline! I love the raspberries pics, so interesting! Let’s see how the guest option works on your site – I believe it even takes the gravatar, which is quite awesome if it does… Let’s just see 🙂

    • Hi Delia – yes, we liked the Raspberries too. So your Gravatar is showing, and I can like your comment, reply to it and share it. We’re really liking this so far.

  • Charlotte

    Hi Caroline, I really like the last photo of the market stall where you inserted your own photo into one of the frames. How did you do that? Thanks

    • Hi there Charlotte – ah, well, that’s sort of a trade secret 😉 BUT, if you pop back next week we are putting out an Ultimate Resource Guide and the answer will be in there. Such a tease, I know!

  • Your choice of music in your videos always makes me happy. 🙂 Glad you mentioned Disqus. Have had it on my blog since forever. Thanks for another great email with fantastic “tasty tips”.

    • Hi Sheila – I spend a bit of time choosing the music because I think it adds that ‘Je ne sais quoi’! We are really liking Disqus too.

  • Love your tips. I struggle with finding photos. I take a lot when traveling, but I need to keep in mind what I might be able to use in future posts when I’m snapping away. Found you on Blog Formatting and enjoyed meeting you. I’m from Out One Ear. Will be checking you out again.

    • Hi there Linda – thanks for taking the trouble to pop over here. Taking your photos is an excellent things to do and just snap away – don’t worry too much about the subject matter as it may come to you later. If you pop back in a week we will be putting an Ultimate Resource Guide which will be free to subscribe. There are a lot of good places to find photos in that.

  • Wendy Del Monte

    ah- I usually edit my photos before I use them, but there are some great tips here! THanks! ( I love the doggy pic!) I’m popping in from Blog Formatting Weekends,

    • Hi Wendy – hopefully you can use the tips. If you do, please show us what you’ve created!

  • Margaret Heisworkingitout Reed

    Great tips! My photo skills could really use some help, it just seems like it is a difficult task to hone in on. Visiting from Blog formatting weekend.Living F.A.B.ulously on Purpose

    • Hello Margaret – what particularly do you find tricky? We might be able to help.

  • Lorelle Mac

    Great hints on photos, there is so much to learn, as I am a Beginner blogger I found your post very helpful.
    When you use Disqus on your site is that the only way people can comment?

    • Hi there Lorelle – glad you found the post helpful. I think it depends on your theme as to whether or not you can comment using Facebook, lets say. We have deactivated the Facebook comments on our theme for now. I don’t think you can have say Comment Luv system on at the same time as Disqus. Is this what you were referring to?

  • Jacqueline Jordan

    Great ideas. For my own blog, the tip in particular that stood out the most was focus, showing greater detail. Pretty amazing the effects that can be achieved with one picture. Very interesting.

    • Hi Jacqueline – I agree, it is interesting just how many different images that you can get from one photo.

  • I always must deal with lots of images, mostly pictures taken by myself or by my staff, so this is very useful to create new possibilities…and it is very creative!

    • Hi Clara – thanks for taking the time to comment – we really do like hearing what other people think. You must come back and show us what you do – please? 🙂

      • We will definitely keep in touch! I’ll be back on Monday 23rd!!

  • Seana Turner

    I loved the video. My images can definitely use some improvement. I’ve been wondering how people are making these improvements/adjustments to their photos. Is this free software or a free trial and then you are committed? I’m trying the Disqus – just tried to post on another site and didn’t work, so we’ll see. Here it goes!

    • Hi there Seana – well, the comment worked here. I must say that we are really liking Disqus as you can do all sorts of great things with it. As regards the software, no it is free and you don’t need to download anything. but the skill is knowing the basics of using colour, fonts etc and that’s part of what we are going to be teaching in our training.

  • I’ve worked with graphic design, so I should really do this more often. But I tend to forget to do it. Thanks for the reminder 🙂

    • Hi Linda – it just depends on what you want to create. It’s just a fun, quick way of making your images a little bit different. Thanks for taking the time to ppop over and join the conversation.

      • Fun, quick, and easy makes it a lot more likely to get done 🙂

  • Bev

    Really well presented blog post, video and everything – as always. I especially liked the helpful bit at the end about Disqus because I have always had signing in problems with Disqus and password issues, making it very frustrating to comment because I have been too impatient in the past! Your post led me to the Disqus site and I was able to fix all that up – so here’s hoping it’s going to work for me this time! Congrats on a brilliant post.

    • Hiya Bev! It’s great that you’ve taken the plunge (like us) and signed up for a Disqus account. What we’ve found so far is that it’s excellent. You can edit your comment, you can import your existing comments from other posts, it will moderate for you…we’re going to be writing a post on it just for those folks, like us, who currently think it’s a pain to sign in each time. Watch this space.

      • Bev

        Thanks for the quick reply – I got an email about it! 🙂

        • I know, so did I, and I happened to be in my email, thus the reason for the quick response. That’s another thing I like about it…