Adding design layers to your photos with Tangent

Tangent has been a fun new find from the app store. 

Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve used the app to edit background images that I would then pair with a text overlay for social media, blog, and email content. It’s easy to use and they’ve created tons of design combinations by giving you the option to customize each element.

Here’s a breakdown of how I put it to work for me:

1) I typically come to the app with an image already sized to what I need. But there is a great built-in feature called “Community Photos” that allows you to search and use images from a good number of photographers. This photo collection would be a huge help for anyone not already using other resources like Flickr’s Creative Commons or Unsplash.

2) The next step is to scroll through 35 style options to start with. There’s a good variety and the initial styles give you an idea of what your design will look like if the style is used as is, without any adjustments. After choosing the style, you’re taken to the first look at your new image with a chance to customize 3 different design elements—a main layer that takes up most of the center, a secondary layer that covers the edges of the image, and color options for the layers.

3) Most of the main layers are geometric shapes. 26 different options come with the app and you can purchase more if you’d like to expand into some new territory. You can modify each of the main layers by pinching to change the size, rotate the layer, slide to adjust the opacity, and click to invert the design.

4) Next, you step over to the secondary layer which covers the edges of the image. There’s another great number of options to choose from and even more if you purchase upgrade packages. I haven’t needed to purchase the additional packages yet because I can get the variety that I need from customizing each layer.

5) After finalizing those 2 layers, you move onto the colorizing. The color options are pretty great and by adjusting the opacity, you can make those changes more subtle or bold to best suit your needs.

6) Once I have the overall design how I want it, I typically save it to my phone and send it to my iCloud so I can pull it onto my computer and layer text over it. If I’m away from my computer, I save it to my phone and then immediately open it in my PicLab HD app to do the text layer or I create a gif with it using my Legend app.

Tangent has been a ton of fun to play with and an easy way to add some variety to my content. The best part, it’s a $1.99 app that helps wanna-be designers like myself create some fairly cool images with just a few finger taps.

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