Saturday, 21 April 2007

Making your own Peaceglobe


So, have you got the Blogblast for Peace feeling? Want to make your own Peaceglobe, but aren't entirely sure how to go about it?

OK, then this one's for you...

1) First of all, you'll need a globe to work with. These can be found at Mimi Lennox's (the originator of the 'Blogging for Peace' movement) Mimi Writes. You can either get it through this link, or you could follow the links from my sidebar:

2) Next is the, oh so hard, task of choosing between the four different Peaceglobes available this time round.

If you just want to sign your name, you could use the image on this page here, by right-clicking on the smaller image. [Also, if you have a dial-up internet connection that can't cope with bigger files]:

However, if you want to do any fancy stuff with your globe (as I've done below, adding pictures and writing) then

  • left-click your choice, and it will take you to the page where the picture is huge.
  • Copy this image by right-clicking on it.
  • Scroll down the bar until you get to "Save image as"
  • Left-click "Save image as"...

  • ...and save the image as something obvious, like 'Peaceglobe 6th June'. Best place to put it is somewhere you can find it easily. Perhaps in the folder 'My Pictures' or 'My Documents' (in the pictures below, I've blanked out all the contents of my folders for privacy, just in case you're wondering why it looks funny :-) )

3) Once you have the globe saved, you're ready for the fun part - personalising the picture!

I don't know what your computer graphics program is, but on many computers that came with Microsoft Windows there is a program called "Paint". This is the program I use most often. It isn't a complicated program, nor can it do as many things as programs such as "Photoshop", but it's good to demonstrate a simple globe-making.

  • So, to see if you have "Paint" on your computer, left-click the Start button at the bottom left of the screen:

You might find there is a shortcut in your pop-up list:

  • But, if not, then left-click "Programs", just above the 'Start' button
  • Left-click "Accessories"
  • and, hopefully, you'll find "Paint" in the drop-down list here, then double-click on it.

4) In the open Paint window (which might have a full white screen), you now want to bring in the Peaceglobe picture you saved earlier. I find the easiest way to do this is to click 'Edit' at the top of the page, then scroll down to the bottom of the list that opens until you get to 'Paste From'. Click on this:

5) Find your Peaceglobe picture in the files, wherever you put it (I put mine in 'My Documents', then in a file called 'Blog':

6) Once you have your picture in front of you, you can use all the tools to draw, write or bring in and place a picture (if you are having trouble with this, or haven't got time to experiment, let me know, and I'll try to show you how...)

7) Word of warning:

Often, when you open a picture file in Paint, it brings it in to fill the size of the screen, or even larger! I usually find I have to resize it.

(Don't click anywhere on the page until you've finished messing with the size and position, because that will fix it.... but, if you do make that mistake, go to the top of the page, click on 'Edit', then 'undo' and start that bit again.)

If you left-click the button that says "Image" at the top of the page, this box will come up:

Click on "Stretch and Skew" in the list. This is how you can re-size any picture you bring in, or turn it, if it needs turning.

If I want to make it smaller, you will need to think of roughly how much. To make the picture half sized, you would write '50' [as in half=50%, quarter=25% etc] in both the horizontal and vertical boxes of the "Stretch" section at the top (ignore the "Skew" section - it's not needed).

If I am using the picture to go round the edge, I'll make it about 15% and then downsize it to fit, dragging the corners, once it's on the page.

(It's better to make it too big than too small, because if you try to enlarge it after shrinking it, it will have lost a lot of it's definition.)

For my Peaceglobe (now in the sidebar), I used the 'paste-from' many, many times, bringing in each coloured flower picture individually, then re-sizing them, and placing them round the edge of the picture.

[Oh yes, to put the flowers round the top and left edge, I shrunk the original picture to 96%, which left a white border. Then I selected the picture, and moved it to the centre of the white space. If you're confused about this, ask... I'll explain elsewhere :-) ]

8) After putting the flowers all round, I created some text-boxes to write my name and message.

You can either:

  1. Write your whole message in one text box, as Akelamalu has in her sidebar here.
  2. Make seperate textboxes directly on the page
  3. Open another "Paint" program, do the text boxes there, and cut the bit you want and paste it onto your globe. (This has the advantage of being easier to resize, using the corner handles, to make it fit and look better.)
Re. Text boxes: If you right-click on the paintbox colour, you can change the background colour of the text, as I have here:

9) Now, whatever you do next, save first!!

Go to the top left corner, click 'File' then 'Save as'.

10) Choose a name and place similar to the first Peaceglobe picture, so you remember where you put it, giving it a name that shows you're ready to Blog it! (eg, on mine I simply added "- For Blog")

Also, make sure you save it as a '.jpeg' or 'jpg' file... if it isn't on this selection in the very bottom 'drop down' box (it might be on save as '.bmp' etc file), then click on the arrow to the right of this box, and choose the correct type... the difference is that the .bmp files are more detailed but the jpeg files tend to be easier to move around, email and post.

Now, you're ready to put your picture up, so go to the next post Putting your Peaceglobe in the Sidebar


Putting your Peaceglobe in the sidebar


So, your Peaceglobe is done, and you want to put it in the sidebar... You are, rightly, proud of it, and can't wait until June 6th to show it...

1) First of all, you have to get your peaceglobe off your computer and onto the internet. If you haven't got blogger, it should be a similar process.

In Blogger, you have to upload the picture into a post before you can do anything else with it, so open a 'New Post' box, and click 'add image' icon (the little picture):

2) Click 'small' for image size, and 'centre' for position, then click where it says 'Browse':

Find your peaceglobe where you cleverly saved it so you wouldn't forget, double-click on it, or click on it then use the 'open' button of the dialogue box:

4) To make the picture a permenent file in Blogger, you then must publish this post... (don't worry, you don't have to leave it there - once you've got its location, you can then delete it, or re-save it as 'draft' for later use):

5) Next, go to your blog (you can do this in a seperate window or tab, if you find that easier):

6) Right-click on your peaceglobe picture, scroll down the list until you get to 'properties' and left-click:

7) Copy the location of the picture (an easy way is to triple-click on it):

8) Go back to the blog dashboard, and click the 'Template' tab:

9) Now, to find a good place in the sidebar to put your Peaceglobe....

Two choices that might be popular are just beneath the profile container, or at the very top of the sidebar.

Either way, use the scroll button on the right to move to about 3/4 down the template. The sidebar is around here somewhere, so slow down until you find something that looks like this (click to enlarge)::



10) I usually start off with putting in paragraph code. When you use the 'open paragraph' and 'close paragraph' codeat the beginning and end of a piece of writing, or a block with writing and an image (s), then it will seperate what's within the code from whatever else is on the page. (I can't write this code here, or it will treat whatever I put between it as a paragraph, but you won't actually see the code, so look for the 'p' and '/p' within the 'v-shaped, sideways brackets):

11) Write the 'open-' and 'closed-' paragraph code, pressing 'enter' twice in between, so they are on different lines.

12) Now you are almost ready to 'paste' the Peaceglobe location you copied a little while ago. First, though, there's some more code that needs to be there (enlarge the follow picture, by clicking on it, to see the code better). Within another set of those sideways-V brackets, you need to write

img src=""

This is giving instructions that what follows at the location you're going to put here is a picture:

13) Once you've typed in the code for an image, the next thing is to paste the location of your peaceglobe you copied at 7). Find the two "" and place the cursor in between, then paste (either right-click and choose 'paste', or press the ctrl and V buttons together):

14) Now, to neaten up the picture, so it's central ( you don't have to do this step, if you want the picture to the left of the sidebar to line up with anything else you have there).

Place the word (in those sideways-v brackets) center at one end of the line you've just written in...

...and /center (in those same brackets) at the other end:

15) Sometimes, I'll use the open and close paragraph code, with spaces in between, to add a space between a picture or block of writing, and the other stuff in the sidebar (but it hasn't proved to be the most effective method... I'm still working on this problem):

16) Another thing you can add is some writing, maybe an explanation of the Peaceglobe picture. You can put this above or below the picture, before or after the paragraph code... depending on how you want it to look. I've written a simple explanation here - what and when:

17) Now, before saving, it's a really good idea to check what it looks like, and make sure it's up there in the sidebar where you want it to be.... use the 'preview' button at the bottom left of the template. When you've looked, use the 'back arrow' at the top of the page to return to template:

18) If everything looks OK, then comes a REALLY IMPORTANT bit (which, I have to admit, I've forgotten in the past) -


19) One thing I found wasn't to my satisfaction when I did the preview was that the picture was centred, but the writing above it wasn't, so I moved the 'center' code to before the writing:

Save again, after any changes.

So, this is what mine looked like:

20) The last thing to do is to 'disappear' the original picture you published at the beginning. This can be done in two ways:

  • By returning to the post, using the 'edit posts' button, and clicking 'edit' on the last post you did, the clicking 'save as draft' - this will retain the picture for future use, if you want it:

  • or, if you don't foresee needing the picture again (you can always use the location address from the template if you need it, or upload it again from scratch) when you've clicked the 'edit posts' button, you could simply delete that whole post:

And that should be that (I hope) unless I've forgotten something essential... :-D

Good luck!

don't forget to send Mimi a copy of your globe in an email (on her profile page), so she can add it to her globe gallery!!