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Captioning your pictures for social networking sites

We have so little
We have so little
Catherine Hill

Everybody seems to be posting pictures with captions on them. It's turned out to be a great way to express yourself on Facebook and many other social media. I use it here on examiner.com for many pictures that appear on my political buzz articles. My dressed-up cats can get my point across without seeming too preachy or accusing. You can use a captioned photo for humor, to show off your children, or to make religious or political points. The only rule is that you must own and have the right to use the picture you're captioning. Of course, you can like or re-post pictures on the social media!

As a retired citizen, I still use simple make-do applications that are easy to load on my laptop. For those with better budgets and more gadgets, there are a multitude of photo-enhancing applications you can get, even for your mobile phone! You may find some of these at android app for pc. They all include drawing applications so you can really do multi-media work.

For those who have to 'make it do or do without', as the old Depression Era rhyme has it, I've provided a slideshow of what you can do with the limited but readily available Microsoft Paintbrush.

We have so little
We have so little Catherine Hill

We have so little

This old-fashioned painting of impoverished cat people is one of my ways of making a point about poor people today.  You have to draw your text box carefully to keep the text out of people's faces.  With Paintbrush, you can choose text color and size and whether the background is opaque or transparent.  If it's opaque, you get to choose a color.  If you want to center text, though, you have to walk it over with the space bar.

Tiger rules the roost
Tiger rules the roost Catherine Hill

Tiger rules the roost

This is an 'animal fun' picture.  My cat Tiger is definitely not top cat around the house.  The two black boy cats generally chase him to the foot of the bed.  Sometimes he outwits them and winds up on top.    I photographed one such moment and captioned it for inclusion on Facebook or Pinterest.  There's lots of nice blank space at the top of the photo to put a caption, so I made the text box transparent.

Drink up your medicine
Drink up your medicine Catherine Hill

Drink up your medicine

This was originally a painting in a medieval medical book, and I couldn't resist putting my own twist on it.  The luxuriant setting and dress indicates these are cats of high rank, who probably needed the barley water concoction to settle their digestion.   I just had to put a funny text to it.

Here, again, I made the background transparent and walked my text around with the space bar to get it centered right.  This takes trial and error but is doable.

Friends at the Hospital
Friends at the Hospital Catherine Hill

Friends at the Hospital

I adapted this Beardsley drawing of upset Queens to illustrate the state of family friends in a hospital where a life-saving procedure has been denied for lack of insurance.  This sort of thing does happen in America, and I want to bring it to people's attention gently.  Again, I had a light background, so I could use a transparent text box and walked the text around to center it.

Modern Old Age
Modern Old Age Catherine Hill

Modern Old Age

I re-purposed this old-fashioned drawing to make a protest about today's world.  Here, I had plenty of space on the right to draw a long text box.  I did not bother to work with centering the text because I needed to say so much in a relatively small space.  Again, the background is transparent.

Labeling my crochet work
Labeling my crochet work Catherine Hill

Labeling my crochet work

This is a close-up of a single-crochet section of the afghan I made.  To explain what I did, I provided a caption in an opaque white text box.  Since this was a long text, I only had to nudge it a little to make it look right.  This sort of labeling is very helpful in illustrating steps  in making an item.  I have even used it to show the importance of quite small needles and needle threaders.

Death in the Sky
Death in the Sky Painting by Fulton L. Peay

Death in the Sky

Here I have used captions in two colors to emphasize the meaning of my father's painting for those who don't remember the terrible Vietnam years.  "Death in the Sky" is red with a transparent background.  The bottom caption in black I had to place very carefully and experiment with the type size before I got it right.

Montague Moon
Montague Moon Painting by F.L. Peay

Montague Moon

Here I merely made the caption my father had supplied a bit larger and easier to read.  I did this to emphasize the importance of the place and the memory contained in this picture.  Most paintings don't really need captions, but sometimes they are helpful.  Here again I used a transparent background to interfere as little as possible with the mood of the picture.

A Ranter and His Wife
A Ranter and His Wife Catherine Hill

A Ranter and His Wife

Here I took an operatic pose and toned it down into modern dress because it expresses so perfectly the experiences of women with deeply conservative husbands.  I used a yellow/orange opaque background for the words to make them stand out.  This expresses the sentiments and disconnects I see around me in normal life.  This is me trying to make a point gently.