Spark Change Podcast Episode 11: Creating Images Quickly

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Written by Denise Miller, Firesteel Advocacy Coordinator

Today on the Spark Change Podcast, we talk about strategies for using different types of images, and free online tools for creating them.

Images are an important part of any advocate’s toolkit. The right image can draw people into your content, and also help them visualize and remember information. And on social media, your audience is more likely to share images than other types of posts.

Firesteel images

Check out some examples of images we’ve created to complement and promote our other content.

graphic domestic violence is primary cause of family homelessness
We designed a series of images including this one to share on Facebook for Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
Housing Trust Fund infographic
Our Housing Trust Fund infographic explains how the fund works and encourages people to advocate for it.
meme image promoting advocacy day
We had a lot of fun creating memes like this one about Housing and Homelessness Advocacy Day, and watching them spread online.
Belcoe quote
This quote came from an interview with housing advocate Terry Belcoe. We used Quozio to turn it into an image.

Tools for creating images

Creating compelling images can be time-consuming and even daunting for those of us who don’t have a background in graphic design. Luckily, there are lots of free tools to help ease and speed up the process. Check out our screen captures of these tools’ user interfaces, and follow the links to try them out yourself!

Infographics Screen Shot allows you to embed videos in your infographics, and features discounted premium services for nonprofit organizations.
piktochart templates Screen Shot
Piktochart’s free, basic service provides access to several nice-looking templates like these. Some include interactive maps. UI Screen Shot
We like’s friendly user interface, shown here. Bonus: You don’t have to log in to start creating images.

Meme images

imgur UI Screen Shot
Use imgur to see what images have gone viral across the internet, easily create a meme using popular images or your own photo, and quickly share it on a variety of social platforms.
Meme Generator Screen Shot
Meme Generator has a big collection of images; you can search for what you want and add your clever caption. You can upload your new image to Imgur with one click or save it on your hard drive, but there’s no obvious way to instantly share it on social media.

Images from quotes

Quozio Screen Shot
Quozio is very easy to use; you can enter text, choose a background, and share your image on social media in under a minute.
PicMonkey Screen Shot
PicMonkey is a photo editor with lots of Photoshop-style tools. In addition to building images from quotes, you can touch up photos, add effects and filters to them, and even design collages. PicMonkey is well integrated with many cloud applications.

We want to hear from you

What tools have you used to create images? What were your strategies for sharing them? What were the results? Let us know by leaving a comment below!

At Firesteel, we test a lot of new media tools as we advocate for an end to homelessness. The purpose of the Spark Change Podcast is to share what we’ve learned, and to help other advocates use these tools. Please let us know what you think of Spark Change so far! Your feedback will help shape future episodes.

Subscribe to Spark Change on iTunes and never miss an episode!

  • indysow

    Do you guys ever use Canva? Great resource for making compelling images!

    • We hadn’t used Canva before, but just spent a few minutes playing with it. It’s fun and easy to use! Thanks for sharing!

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