Tutorial: Claim Your Artistry by Adding a Watermark

Did you know a kid, when you were growing up, who had those perfect little labels sewn into her shirts when she went to sleep-away camp: “Susie Nitworth”?  Those shirts were not going to show up in someone else’s cabin!  Watermarking your photos is kinda like that.

A watermark is your first line of defense when it comes to unauthorized use of the photo by someone who discovers it on the web. It also offers a way to market your organization: the more times a viewer comes across your logo over a great photo, the more it will positively reflect and build your brand.

Following are three ways to create and place watermarks on your photos.


If you already have a logo, here’s how to go about plopping it onto your photos in PicMonkey.

Step 1. Open your photo and logo in the Editor 

Screen shot of adding your own overlay

Open your photo in the editor. Click the Overlays tab (the icon showing a heart, comic bubble, and starburst in the far left column).

Click “Your Own” at the top of the panel and select your logo image from the files on your computer to open it.

Step 2. Fade and place

screen shot of overlay palette_watermark tutorial

In the Overlay palette, adjust the “Fade” slider to 30 – 60%, then close the palette.

Click and drag the image to where you want it on the photo. You can adjust the size once the image is placed, by clicking a corner circle and dragging it inward or outward.


If you need a quick-and-dirty way to get a company name or URL over your photo and you won’t need to do it again soon, this is a good method.

screen shot of text-only watermark_watermark tutorial

Open your photo in the editor. Click the Text tab (the “P” icon in the far left column) and click inside the box to start typing your text. Choose your color by using the color picker in the Text palette. Or you can type in a color’s the hex value (the six digits/letters in the upper right corner). White is “FFFFFF.”

Adjust the “Fade” slider to 30 – 60%, then close the palette. Click and drag the image to where you want it on the photo. Adjust the size once the image is placed by clicking a corner circle and dragging it inward or outward.

Tip:  If you find a color you like using the color picker, write down the hex value so you can match it later, if you want.


If you know you’ll be watermarking a bunch of photos, create a transparent image that you’ll be able to use for all of them. Your watermarking will be more consistent, and you’ll have less digit fatigue!

Step 1. Make a single-cell Collage

Screen shot of creating a single-cell collage_watermark tutorial

Open Collage and click the Layouts tab (the grid icon in the far left column).  Click “Create your own” at the top of the panel, and a single 1024 x 1024 cell will appear.  Don’t worry about the size for now.

Step 2.  Make it transparent and save

screen shot of making background transparent_watermark tutorial

Click the Background tab.  Click the box next to “Transparent background.”  Don’t freak out: it’s still there!  The dotted lines show the perimeter of your transparent background.

 Click “Save” on the top toolbar, give your background a name, and save it as a “.png” file.  Close out of Collage (the “x” button in the upper right corner).

Step 3.  Create logo in Editor

screen shot of creating logo in editor_watermark tutorial

Open your transparent background file in the Editor (click “Edit a photo” on the home page and select the file from wherever you saved it on your computer).  Don’t freak out: it will appear invisible at this point, but it’s there!  Click the Text tab and then the “Add Text” button on the top of the menu.  Keep the text tool in the middle of your (invisible!) background while you work on it.

Try different typefaces to see which one works best for the letters in your name. Some typefaces have particular letters that (like g’s) that are tricky. You want one that’s legible and reflects the personality of your brand.

Our Help center has a short article on using the Text tool.

Choose a color for it (see notes above). Pick a size that’s fairly large—72 point is good—you can reduce it when it’s placed on your image later. Check out our newly expanded menu of overlays and see if one of them would be right for your logo; if so add it!

Step 4.   Crop it

screen shot of cropping your image_watermark tutorial

Go to the Basics tab, and click “Crop.”  Crop your image tightly around the periphery of the logo.

 Step 5. Save it

Screen shot of saving your image_watermark tutorial

Be sure to save it as a “.png” file; this file format retains its transparency.  When you place it onto images, try to be consistent about where you put it each time.


Wah-lah!  You did it, Fancy Pants!  Who ever said you weren’t a slick professional, totally on top of your game?

Want to learn more? Check out these articles:

Video Tutorial: Learn How to Use Overlays!

Tutorial: Using Two-Color Overlays

Bangin’ Logo Design Tips for Your Business

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