I admit that this is a weird post, but after struggling through learning how to do all of this, I felt a need to write it all down. You see, all I wanted to do was post youtube videos, partly for fun, partly to inspire others, and possibly to generate income. But it is not as easy as it looks. It helps that I have become familiar with using iMovie to put together movies and slideshows. A lot of experimentation combined with a few apple store tutoring sessions (apple one-to-one programs) over the last 4 years has paid off. As a result, I have been able to make some fun family movies to post to a Vimeo account.
When I wanted to expand to YouTube for videos more specific to my blog, I needed help. I tried to google things, but was overwhelmed, so I called my techno-geek daughter and she helped me over a few major hurdles of comprehension, as well as simply making me aware of steps that I wasn’t recognizing. Then, I also ended up asking my graphic arts major daughter for help. Below is an outline, hopefully with details in ways that matter, that tell what I did. My barefoot running in the snow video is embedded at the end.
1. Set up a Google+ account. I already had a gmail account, so that was a brief exercise for the first account. I just had to go to the little grid of 9 dark squares in the upper right section of the menu bar when on my gmail webpage.
2. Then, I had to set up a base youtube account using that primary email address. I didn’t do any specific art for this parent channel at this point, as my main goal was to make the specific channels.
3. Once that was done, I could create other Google+ accounts by clicking on the “Home” icon to the far left (right under the Google +) to show a drop down menu that gives the choice for clicking on “Pages” third from the bottom.
4. This should land you on a page showing any other Google+ pages you have, as well as giving you the option to “get your page”. That is what you click on to make a new Google+ page.
5. Clicking on that button takes you to another page where they want you to choose a category. “Brand” seems most appropriate for what I’m doing.
6. Now, I was asked to name my new page, and list it’s relevant website, which for me is this blog.
7. With that filled in and “create page” clicked, I was finally taken to where I was supposed to set up my page, adding a cover photo, description, etc. It seemed best to me to make this look reasonable. As Facebook gets more glitchy about how it allows my Daily Improvisations page to show up in people’s feeds, I may end up using these Google+ pages more.
8. To create the photo, I spent some time with iPhoto and Aperture for cropping and making collages, then used the BorderFix plug-in I added for Aperture to create text boxes and text on my photos. The same photo can be used for the youtube art, but there are more specific requirements for having it look good and being able to be accepted by the YouTube site. Specifically, this means making sure any words or particularly important part of the photo be going across the center of the photo, as the computer version of the photo will be clipped on the site to only show that section. Oddly, photos cannot be exported from Aperture, so I also have to go back to iPhoto to do that. I was taught by helpful techno-geek daughter to always export in lowest quality for the blog and Facebook, and that seems to work for Google+ as well. Once the photo is somewhere that you can upload from (I usually just do it from my desktop so that I can find it easily and not get bogged down in all of the iPhoto library again), there is a button on the Google+ page in the blue section of the upper rectangle that says “add cover photo.” It you click on that, it gives the option of uploading a photo, or choosing one from their own archives.
9. Having a specific Google+ page allows me to set up a specific YouTube channel for that page. If you go again to the 9 box grid, in the drop down menu there should be an option of clicking on a YouTube icon. There might be enough icon choices that you have to click on 3 dots or more options at the bottom of the drop down menu.
10. From the YouTube page, you can still see your photo icon (if you have added a photo, otherwise is will be some graphic space filler) on the far upper right. When you are on the YouTube site, clicking on this gives you a drop down menu that shows all your Google+ pages associated with your account. If the page does not already have a YouTube account associated with it, there is the option right under it’s name to “create channel.” For some reason, after you click on that, it then gives you a little pop-up like box that again asks you to click on “okay” to proceed. Then, one more box explains a bit more about how it is all connected, so you know who will have access to what in this set-up.
11. This is where I ended up using Preview to tweak my original photo to make it work with the YouTube channel. My graphic arts daughter showed me how if I open up the photo on my computer in Preview, I can easily adjust pixels and resolution. I don’t completely understand what resolution means different than pixels, but I know that I ended up needing to adjust both in order for youtube to let me upload my photo. With it in Preview, click on “Tools” to get a drop down menu. From there, click on “Adjust Size.”
12. Usually, Preview doesn’t like to make both changes at once, so it works best to change one or the other first, click “okay,” then go back to the drop down menu in “Tools” and “Adjust Size” again to change the other. The numbers that YouTube wants are dimensions of at least 1248 by 1157, for reasons I know not, because then, they want it in few pixels. The dimensions did not have to be that exactly, but had to be at least that. My daughter also somehow knew this magic number of “72” pixels that made all the difference. Changing all my photos to 72 pixels made them YouTube channel art friendly.
13. The last thing to do is upload the photo and see how it works. I went back and made changes to each photo before I was happy enough with it. Once I knew what I had to do to adjust it, making the changes went fairly quickly and was worth it to get something presentable.
As of today, I have two completely set up YouTube channels and one more in the making. Using music is greatly limited if I want to allow ads on them, so I have been experimenting with creating my own music, first with just recording myself on the flute playing public domain classics and celtic tunes. Hopefully, the folks at YouTube don’t change too many things about the process again soon! Here is a list of the websites that I found useful in doing this.
Here is the video on barefoot running in the snow I finally got to post today, and the blog that goes with it is at Running Barefoot on Ice and Pine Needles to Stack Rock Near Bogus Basin: