Top Reasons Why You Can Make Awesome Creations With FotoJet
You know what I love? Graphic design web apps. They’re often easy to use, don’t require you to download giant software suites, and usually work on a “freemium” model so there’s no upfront cost. When I fell head over heels for Canva, I thought it was the best thing in the world. I made tons of banners and graphics for my online business, and I know plenty of other people who used it to make professional-looking book covers or ads.
Well, now there’s a new graphic design site in town, and it’s even easier to use than Canva! FotoJet allows you to make banners, cards, posters, book covers, magazine covers, flyers, ads, and even Facebook timeline covers. It’s your one-stop-shop for most of your graphic art needs, and the more I use it, the more impressed I am with all of its cool features.
FotoJet has three main creation options. Let’s take a closer look at them:
This option primarily allows you to make social media graphics, like banners for instance. You can start out with a template, then add photos, text, and graphics to your design. All of this is from a convenient drag and drop interface, similar to other online editors of its kind.
To build your design, you have many different free backgrounds to choose from as a foundation. There is clipart as well, many of them themed. For example, if you’re going to make a Christmas-themed banner for Facebook, you can use the Facebook cover template and put free Christmas clipart on there. All of these graphics are high quality.
Of course, if you’re not satisfied will all of the free offerings on the site, you can buy stock graphics and photos.
In this setting, you can make collages, posters, flyers, cards, and more. It’s very similar to the Design mode, and actually they’re nearly identical and use the same mechanics.
This option is for photos. If you need to edit a photo by applying filters, cropping, and performing other common modifications, then this is the mode you will be using. It actually has a surprising amount of functionality for such a simple web application. The editor is where FotoJet really shines in comparison to other online graphic art sites like this, since many of them don’t even have a photo editing function at all.
Since it’s a web app, it’s definitely using a lot of server-side resources, and one of the potential downfalls of such a site would be slow loading times. Fortunately, every time I’ve used FotoJet, it has loaded great and hasn’t given me any problems.
The interface is also really responsive. I can click, drag, and drop things and the screen instantly changes without any lag. It’s only natural that at some point it will give me a hard time or the server will be slower than usual, since it is a web app, but so far it hasn’t, so that’s a good sign.
Just make sure that your browser is up to date when you use FotoJet, and that Flash is installed. Unfortunately—and this is one of my few complaints—it currently uses Flash, but what are you going to do, you know? Flash is being phased out slowly, but it’s still common on the web. Even Canva uses it for some functionalities. At any rate, it should work on nearly all browsers on most major operating systems, since it uses ubiquitous web standards.
Recently, they’ve been testing out a new HTML5 version of FotoJet, though, and it looks promising. It’s in beta, but it’s pretty slick and fast. (I had some trouble getting it to work on Chrome, though. It works great on Firefox.)
FotoJet is pretty standard when it comes to its business model. It’s “freemium,” which means that the basic features are completely free (and very useful), but if you want to kick it up a notch, you can get a premium membership which increases functionality. How much is it?
Well, it depends on whether you bill monthly or yearly. If you pay annually, then it’s $2.91 USD per month, and if you want to pay monthly, then it’s $4.99 USD. As you can see, those are quite some substantial savings there if you pay upfront.
What do you get if you go premium? Well, you get some advanced editing tools, over 600 premium templates, more than 30 extra fonts, over 300 more clipart graphics, more than 20 extra photo effects, more than 30 premium shapes and overlays, and more than 20 extra frames. Plus, you’ll get priority customer service and you can use the site ad-free.
According to the website, FotoJet also says that they’ll be adding more extras to the upgrade as time goes on. This isn’t a bad deal at all.
The advanced editing is probably the most useful feature out of all of them, though. It can really bring your photo editing to the next level. With basic, you can add certain special effects, text, overlays, clip art, and frames. You can also rotate, crop, add color, and do a lot of the usual graphics manipulations. With the advanced editor, though, you get advanced effects. You can use special filters, sharpen the image, change the focus, dehaze it, and more.
You can use FotoJet for just about anything that is graphics-related. Here are some quick ideas for stuff you can make just using the basic, free version:
Upload a photo of your beautiful face and add a bunch of seasonal clipart. You can also choose themed backgrounds to make everything pop. Add some personalized text, and you have a professional-looking e-card that you can download and send to your friends and family.
Book / Magazine Covers
Are you thinking of writing your own book? While outsourcing the cover is highly recommended, since we aren’t all artistically gifted, FotoJet makes it really easy to put a good looking cover together without much fuss. You can save a lot of time, too. Rather than spending hours in PhotoShop or GIMP, FotoJet lets you put together something decent in minutes.
Posters / Flyers
Is your band going to play their next gig this weekend? You’re going to need a digital flyer to tell people all about it. You can upload photos of past events, add effects and text, and share it with your audience.
Website Banners / Graphics
This one is most important to me, and FotoJet excels at it. Humans are visual creatures, and the days when you could write a boring old blog post on a boring white background with no graphics are gone. (Well, you can still do this, but you’re unlikely to get people reading or sharing.)
My problem used to be that I’m not a professional graphic artist. Most website owners aren’t. So, instead, I would outsource to cheap labor—but you know how that is. Besides having to deal with quality issues every once in awhile, you just don’t have a lot of control over what the final result will be. Many times I wished I could somehow be inside the mind of my graphic designer minions and tell them exactly what I wanted, detail by detail as they created my banners.
Instead of torturing freelancers, though, a good middle ground is to use a site like FotoJet. Seriously, sites like these are the next big thing in graphic design, I think. They make it so that someone who isn’t even that experienced can decorate their website and make themselves look like a total pro. Best of all, FotoJet’s basic service is free, so you need zero capital to do this.
On the other hand, if you’re a freelancing graphic designer who is just starting out, then your job got easier. Lots of people aren’t very literate with technology or simply don’t have the time to use even easy web apps like FotoJet, so you can totally get started with a little graphic design business for absolutely no money. If you don’t believe me, then make an account on Fiverr and give it a try!
Of course, not everything is a bowl full of cherries. FotoJet is great, but there are a few things that they could improve upon that would make this web app even better. Luckily, they are things that I can mostly live with:
– You can only save in three formats.
So, you can only save and download your work in JPG, PNG, or PDF format. This isn’t really a huge complaint because these are pretty solid formats that will cover 90% of your needs, to be honest. Still, they could have offered a few others like BMP or GIF just for flexibility. Granted, I can understand how adding more file formats—especially large ones—can be a heavy burden for the servers to carry. You can always change the format on a graphics program like GIMP once you have downloaded your finished work, anyway.
– You can’t save your work on the cloud.
That’s right, it seems that currently you can’t keep your work saved on FotoJet’s servers; you have to save and download it when you’re done creating it, or send it to one of your social media accounts. This means that you can only really work on one project at a time (which keeps you focused, I guess).
It’s a little weird, but kind of understandable since FotoJet is relatively new and they may not have the storage capacity for millions of random graphics yet. Maybe in the future, as they grow, this will be a possibility. One thing that they could do is make it an option in the premium service at least.
– No animated GIFS
This is a minor gripe, and to be frank, animated GIFS are a bit tacky these days, but it would have been cool if they had a feature where you could make simple animations out of still images. I guess it’s just not that kind of graphics application, though.
– There is no mobile support.
Obviously, FotoJet doesn’t work on many mobile browsers because it uses Flash, but in theory they could fix this by putting together a decent app that has FotoJet’s functionality. I kind of don’t blame them, though, as a lot of the graphic design web apps like Canva don’t have a mobile app, either. And to be fair, they seem to be actively working on it, so we might have a mobile solution soon.
– It uses Flash.
Like I said, you have to install Flash to use the regular version, but they seem to be working on switching to HTML5, which is nice.
Again, these are just minor complaints—first world problems, if you will. Most of these gripes are also not unique to FotoJet, so don’t let it discourage you from giving it a try.
What’s the verdict on FotoJet? Well, it’s a solid graphic art creator and photo editor that just about everyone can use. If you can click around the screen with a mouse, then you can make a little masterpiece for your social media profile, or even for your business. It offers a host of great features, including:
– Free Clipart.
These aren’t the dorky kind that look like they come from 1990’s versions of Microsoft Word, either. These are modern, professional-looking graphics with popping color.
– Stock Photos.
This alone is worth the “price of admission” (free!). They have more than half a million photos that you can use, many of them free.
– Tons of Templates.
There are templates for just about any kind of graphic art you need.
– Basic Photo Editing
Most photo editing tasks can be done for free and quickly, right from your browser.
– Good support.
You can e-mail support right from the interface, and of course you get really responsive support if you’re a premium member.
All in all, this is a good graphics web app to add to your arsenal. It can be very powerful when used in conjunction with other graphics editors as well, so I definitely recommend checking it out.