How to generate beautiful featured images inside of WordPress

Post written by Hudson Atwell
On Friday, May 5th, 2017

Introduction

I’m in love with the Featured Image Generator plugin for WordPress. This plugin has given me a way to generate image content for my posts on the fly by layering images & text to create unique presentations… all within WordPress. I’ll demonstrate in the sections below how I used this plugin to generate a featured image for this post. I’ll show the final generated image too so you can how well this plugin worked.

Before finding this plugin I’d use Google image search and set the filter to only look for public domain / fair-use-license images. That worked well, it was better than nothing.

Using Google Image Search to browse for fair-use and public-use images.

I’ve not had a copy of PhotoShop on my laptop for years and breaking out my open source image editor Gimp often seems like too much trouble because I’m not that familiar with the controls.

To tell you the truth, I’m very comfortable inside of WordPress and I’ve always wished it had better image controls but I figured privately to myself that the technology did not exists in a way WordPress could leverage it.

But here it is. And I decided to create a tutorial to show my enthusiam and show how it works:

Tutorial

Step 1. Obtaining and installing

Featured Image Generator has a limited feature free version found on the WordPress plugin directory and a pro version with expanded image sourcing and element control capabilities. I purchased the Pro version quickly after checking out the free. I was stoked and A Okay with the exchange.

Step 2. Generating a featured image

Let’s get right to it. The first thing when we want to do is to open the featured image generator inside of our post edit screen.

A window popups up similar to a WordPress thickbox and prompts you to source a stock photo as a background from Unsplash or even from Pixabay if you are using the pro version of the plugin. I don’t know why but this time I looked for Baloons.

After we’ve selected a background image we are taken into the Editor where we can control our layers.

Below I added a PNG image layer of our Inbound Now logo and then added a text layer under it while controlling the opacity of the text.

Continuing this trend of adding supportive transparent graphics I got to a point where I kind of liked a version but was not sure if I wanted to continue using it so I saved a copy. I’m amazed this plugin can do this. I wonder what kind of PHP library (JavaScript Library!) the developer used to handle the image creation…

And I ended up with a version I liked better, pressed the ‘Set Featured Image’ button and now this blog post is ready for publishing. This is important! Zapier will send this post to our FaceBook, our LinkedIn, and it’ll create a Twitter image post. I’m no idiot, a good featured image is my biggest attention grabber socially.

 

And let’s take a look at our final featured image.

Feature Image Generator, a WordPress Plugin

Featured Image Generator Plugin

About the Author:
Cheers! Hudson Atwell is a co-founder and the current CEO of Inbound Now. You can follow him on his Twitter at @atwellpub or request him for work on Codeable.io. Thanks for reading!

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