HOW TO CREATE A CIRCULAR PROFILE PICTURE IN PHOTOSHOP

I love circular profile pictures; they are compact, cute and simple. But that is not the only reason why you see circular profile pictures on many popular websites.

What are the benefits?

Have you ever wondered why Twitter, Google+, Instagram etc. all have circular profile pictures? This definitely has something to do with User Experience (UX) design. You can read about it in details here but the main reasons are:

  • Sharper edges take the focus out of the image
  • The human mind is conditioned to think of sharper edges as harmful and rounded edges as safe
  • Rounded edges are considered to be easy on the eyes as they are better for visual information processing

Then, why not use these benefits for your blog's profile picture? However, I think this entirely depends on the aesthetic of a person, so there is no right or wrong when it comes to this choice.For this tutorial we will be using Adobe Photoshop. I know many of you use Photoshop for a variety of your creative needs, so I quickly whipped up a FREE cheatsheet with all the keyboard shortcuts for you to download and use, click below right now!

These 25 Photoshop shortcuts and tricks will speed up your workflow and save you a lot of time in your blog & Business. Plus Download a FREE cheatsheet too!

5 simple steps to a round profile picture:

If you are the one for circular profile pictures, then here is an easy way to create one from a square or rectangle photograph in Photoshop.

Step 1 : Open your photo in Photoshop by going to File > Open > Browse your file location. If your layers panel isn't open, locate it by opening Windows > Layers (select). If your Tools panel isn't open, locate it by opening Windows > Tools (select).

Step 2 : Select the Marquee Tool from the tools panel. Right click on the icon and select the Elliptical Marquee tool

Please click on the picture to enlarge

Step 3 : Using the Marquee tool, mark the region of the photo that you want in your profile picture. Since the tool is elliptical in shape, you can carve out a circle easily and you can adjust the size and shape by just playing around a bit. 

Please click on the picture to enlarge

Step 4 : Once you have the circular dotted outline, right-click and select Layer Via copy. This creates a new layer in the layers panel. Now just click on the eye icon next to the Background layer to make it invisible which leaves you with the circular picture that you just created. 

Please click on the picture to enlarge

Step 5 : If you need to, just crop out the edges and adjust the position of the circle. To save the image, Click File > Save for Web > Name the file and click save. That's it, you are done :)

Also, I know many of you use photoshop for a variety of your creative needs, so I quickly whipped up a FREE cheatsheet with all the keyboard shortcuts for you to download and use, click below right now!

These 25 Photoshop shortcuts and tricks will speed up your workflow and save you a lot of time in your blog & Business. Plus Download a FREE cheatsheet too!

Circular cropping is best for images that are not too zoomed in, as it gives you a nice boundary around the face without cutting into it. I am currently just waiting to take a better headshot for a round profile picture for my blog ;)

What about you, you like round or square?