Now that my book is out more than one Twitter intoxicated colleague has instructed me as to power twitter-mastership, and that I must replace my tired old Twitter offerings.
I searched around and came up with the following procedure, which worked for me on my Ubuntu laptop like a charm, using all Open Source tools.
- Plan what you want to do.
- Use the background image used for this site, including header background color and degradé.
- On a long narrow strip running down the left hand side (225 pixels wide) put my social website profile photo along with personal blurb.
- Produce the uploadable background directly from this Gimp source file so I can easily modify it in the future.
- Change the text, link and other colors for my Twitter page
- Assemble all your building blocks
- Background image
- Text snippets
- Identify hexadecimal values of color scheme.
For example, I used the gcolor2 ( http://gcolor2.sourceforge.net ) color selector (easily instalable on my Ubuntu laptop) to grab quickly the color used in my header, planning to use it for links color on my Twitter page.
- Create any necessary custom patterns for your Gimp installation.
I copied the back_header.gif file (used as a background image on my blog header with repeat-x) to the ./.gimp-2.4/patterns/ directory right under my home directory, then refreshed the patterns dialog (Dialogs > Patterns) and there it was!
- Make the Gimp canvas and paint it
- Open Gimp.
- Set the foreground and background colors according to your color scheme.
- Go to File > New and create a new canvas 1255 x 555 pixels
- To add my header layer, I:
- Created a new layer 1255 x 150 (the height of my header background tile)
- Click on Dialogs > Layers, and clicked on the eye next to my main layer (Background) to make it invisible, renamed my new layer Header, made sure it was visible and selected it all (Select > All)
- Clicked on Dialogs > Patterns, and made sure my header pattern was selected.
- Clicked on the Bucket fill tool, and in the Tool options dialog selected the Pattern Fill option button, then clicked on the header layer with the bucket cursor: got my header going!
- Make a layer 128 x 405 pixels. Select Move Tool. In the Tool Options dialog click on the Move the active layer option. Move the new layer flush left, just under the header layer.
- Pasted my profile pic on as an additional layer, actually and positioned that over the left sidebar layer.
- Put some appropriate verbiage underneath with the text tool.
- Save it as either a PNG, JPG or GIF file no larger than 800 K.
- Login at your Twitter home page. Go to Settings / Design.
- Click on the Change background image link.
- Browse to your new background image and hit Save changes.
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