How to Create a Funky Sidebar Bio with Pic Monkey

I am learning as I go when it comes to WordPress; every day there is something new. Apparently, there is even MORE HTML language that I have to know to own my blog. It has never made me appreciate all they did for me over at Blogger more.

For real.

But at the same time, I do love being able to create my own space. Decorate my room the way I like it, as it pertains to blogging and that I couldn’t necessarily do when I was at Blogger. Oh sure, I could change the fonts and backgrounds and add a new header but I didn’t have much more control over anything more than that.

I am always looking at other blogs to give me inspiration as far as design go and I was starting to notice a trend among bloggers: sidebar bio’s that are kicked up a notch.

It started with this one from the blog Little Brags:

 

Little Brags Side Bar Bio

 

Whoa, you can use different fonts in your side bar bio?!?!?

This is why I am not making full-time money blogging.

But I liked that her information was to the point, direct yet fun.

I hate, HATE writing bio’s.

It always comes off sounding like a term paper about the Pioneers or some shit I have no clue talking about so I it looks like I am totally faking it.

I love to churn butter in my spare time while tending to the calves that need to be milked.

Scratch that.

I graduated high school then worked at McDonald’s for two years so I could “find myself”. 

Nope.

I like to eat ice cream in my underwear while watching old episodes of Teen Mom because I am in menopause. I also like to yell at the television, MY GOD AMBER, GET YOUR SHIT TOGETHER. 

Much better.

While I am sharing, I love this header too:

Header I love

I am a visual person so having tiny little cartoon pictures is how you get my attention.

I want a little turkey on my blog.

Here is how I came up with my side bar bio.

If you want turkey’s in it, go for it.

YOU BE YOU.

1- you need to figure out what you want people to know about you

Some call it an “elevator pitch” but I call it “painful”.

Step 1- think of the basics; your name, how many kids, married or not married, if you have an unusual blog name tell how you came up with it.

Step 2- what makes your blog unique?

Step 3- think of 4-5 things you either like, want to do in your spare time, can’t live without.

Write all of these things down to get your mind to workin’.

2- your mug shot

I think this is a given. Duh.

3- pic monkey is your best friend

If you don’t know it now, consider this your warning: Pic Monkey is a blogger and photographer’s BFF. Even if you don’t have a blog or simply love to take pictures of your family with your phone, Pic Monkey is the best tool you can ever use. I use the upgraded version (about $39 a year) because I use it constantly.

The upgrade is totally worth it, by the way. Can you say weight loss feature??

Let’s start making your cool ass bio!

circle-photo

My lovely assistant Kari standing in front of a door all whimsical will be helping us.

To start, you will need a picture of your bad self, because people want to see who it is that is writing to them.

They are funny like that.

You need to edit your picture and create a frame around your beautiful mug. That is unless you want your head to take up the entire canvas which might be kind of cool! Write your bio across your face??

I might do that. Stay tuned.

If you want your picture to be framed and not just a rough square picture, read this tutorial from Pic Monkey themselves. They can explain it a lot better than I ever could.

After you have saved your new circle picture to your computer, head back to Pic Monkey.

Open Pic Monkey

Click on the butterfly icon in the side bar. These are overlays that you can add to your canvas.

2016-11-09_0956

Click on Add your own and choose the circle picture you made.

Pic Monkey Side Bar Bio Tutorial

I moved my picture to the upper left so I could leave room to write my bio.

I used several different fonts in mine because I can but also because I felt like it spiced it up a bit.

“Blogging experts” say that the best blogs have easy to read fonts and that busy blogs are hard to read. I do agree with that as far as the body of my blog but this is the side bar and I wanted something that expressed my personality a little more.

You do what you like but here is what I did:

Blog Bio Tutorial

Click on Overlay, then on Geometric. I chose circles, or balls. You choose. In my world, they are balls.

I added some to the top right in different sizes.

Blog Bio Tutorial

You can make the balls smaller or larger depending on what you like.
I love me some big balls.

Except here. I made mine small. Because size restrictions.

You can choose colors by clicking on the balls.

Blog Sidebar Tutorial

Isn’t that pretty?

I kind of like it better than what I have on the blog now.

Now we get to write.

Click the Tt button and here is where the magic begins and by magic I mean your bio.

Side Bar bio tutorial

The text box will be your friend in this process. It will help you with everything from changing the size, color and even fading it if you want a softer look.

Side Bar Bio Tutorial

For each line, I will add a different text font to keep it interesting.

I had no rhyme or reason, I literally picked the fonts I like the best.

Keep adding your text until it is done.

Blog Side Bar Bio Tutorial

I went a little crazy with the fonts but tis fun so I shall keep it.

Plus, if you are a long time reader of this blog you will realize that this is completely normal for me.

Press the Save button at the top of your screen and save your new side bar bio to your computer.

If you are on WordPress, first you want to save your new bio picture to your media so that you can produce an image URL.

Here is how:

1- in your dashboard, click on Media< Add new

2- Select the file you want to upload (your new bio) 

3- once it has uploaded, click on the small edit button at the bottom right of your screen

4- your bio will open in a new tab but you will see the file URL in the upper right hand corner

5- click on the URL to copy it so you can paste it into your widget 

After copying your image URL you will want to head back to the side of your dashboard and scroll down to Appearance and click on Customize.

Click on Widgets, then Side Sidebar.

If you don’t have a widget yet set up for your bio, you can always go back and add that under the Widget link on your dashboard under Appearance.

My image widget is through Jetpack so I will use instructions for that.

You will see a line that asks for Image URL.

Paste your URL onto that line.

Save it and you are all done!

There are two boxes for the dimensions of your bio/image. Don’t worry about entering any numbers in there as they will automatically size it to fit.

If you find it is too large, then you can go back in and play around with the numbers.

Make sure you save your work and then take a look see!

Side Bar Bio Tutorial

Above is how your new side bar bio should look!

For more blogging tutorials, check out some of these posts:

13 tips to make your blog look amazing

How to take your own headshot 

How to make your own blog header

How to comment

6 thoughts on “How to Create a Funky Sidebar Bio with Pic Monkey

  1. Andrea

    Well look at you, going all AV club on us! Now I am longing for a good old fashioned film strip viewing! Please can I be in charge of flipping to the next frame!!!
    Andrea recently posted…(Sigh.)My Profile

  2. jessie

    You’re awesome. I loved me some Picmonkey back in my blogging days. I miss blogging. I don’t miss diy or house anything. Now if a blog could be a running monolog of comments I’d be on it!!

    WordPress can be a pain in the a#! sometimes, but I did love the plug-ins and editor.