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My Diary For 2023

Every year I write a blog post about which diary system or set up I am going to use for the following twelve months. In recent years, I have moved away from a Filofax (I trialled something earlier this year - more of that in a minute) and fallen in love with the Hobonichi printed diaries. For the last two years I have used a Hobonichi Weeks as my personal planner and I won't be deviating from that this year. I have tried a Hobonichi Techo A6 a couple of times but have never managed to feel comfortable with it size-wise.  I have always lusted after the Hobonichi Cousin A5 as a main work planner so, this year, I have bitten the bullet at launch time and invested in my very first one. Hobonichi Weeks The Hobonichi Weeks is a slim diary with a yearly, monthly and weekly layout. The main section is a "week to view with notes" and there are an additional 70 note pages at the back. This year (2022) I used the "Mega" version which comes with almost three times as m

Using Fotor To Create Great Images

Just recently, I've discovered Fotor - a suite of editing tools for your photographs with an option to create your own images for use on your social media channels.  


You can use the Fotor tools either via the website for online photo editing or off-line using their desktop app. With just a few clicks you can tidy up a favourite photograph by simply adjusting the exposure, brightness and contrast, you can add a filter or two, crop the image, remove red-eye and so much more, all with simple steps, all of which come with full instructions and hints and tips. There are over 50 preset edits you can use or layer them up to create even more effects.

Here's a simple edit I did with one of the photos I took outside Salford Lads Club a couple of years ago. I adjusted the tilt shift (two layers of blur to create the effect), used one of the black & white effects and cropped the image. It took about two minutes all together.

BEFORE




AFTER




As also mentioned, you can use the 'Design' section to create Facebook cover photos, Pinterest-friendly images or a photo collage for your blog posts or even up your Instagram game with the Instagram template.

Here is a banner I made which is suitable for use on Pinterest. For this one I took a free image I already had saved (although there are a huge number of templates to use on Fotor), added a rectangle with the transparancy lowered, inserted the text and voila!  This one took around five minutes to make but I'm sure you could be even more creative!



I've used similar apps such as Picmonkey and Picasa and this stands right up there alongside them. Fotor isn't pretending to be Photoshop but does provide a simple, effective way to tweak your photos. 


Fotor is a free app with over 200 million users worldwide although there is the option to upgrade to a pro account (additional filters and tools) for $39.99 per year.