I’ve been spending some time here and there looking at my systems and deciding if things need to be updated, changed, improved or even deleted.

Google has been making changes to a lot of their platforms and getting things very connected to Google+.  I haven’t done many videos lately so I hadn’t logged into my YouTube channel lately. Wow has it changed!

I took a few minutes to update my channel art and thought I’d share the process and the template I created with you.

The art that is at the top of your YouTube Channel is aptly named “Channel Art”.  The file is set up so it will work on a variety of devices – TV, Tablet, desktop computer and mobile phones.

The proportions each of these devices uses varies so you have to take that all into account when designing your image.  If you design based on the size needed for TV, a mobile phone user will see only a small portion of the center of the image.  For that reason I always choose to design for the smallest device and make it work for the rest.  I also go with the “less is more” when it comes to online graphics so I opted for a lot of white space.  You could add patterns, colors, etc. but just make sure it works and doesn’t detract from the main point of the Channel Art – letting people know what your channel is about at a glance.

Here is what the setup file looks like.  I created a Photoshop file you can download and use – complete with guides and shading so it will be quick and easy for you to see what device sees what area.  Then hide or delete those sections when you have your channel art ready to go.

YouTube Channel Art - Sample setup fileYou want your main message to stay within the center gray rectangle – that is the area someone will see on their phone.  The rest should be extra and not contain important information.

Here is an example of my YouTube channel art with a red background.

YouTube - ChannelArt Sample with background colorWhen I upload it to my YouTube channel, they show me what it will look like on different devices before I commit to the design.

YouTube - ChannelArt - Demo With Red backgroundSo you can see that the mobile user sees no red and someone watching on TV sees a lot!  I didn’t love this so I went more basic and kept the background white.  Here’s the art file

YouTube -Channel Art - SampleAnd here is what it will look like across different devices

YouTube Channel Art demo with white backgroundI like this so this is what you will see the next time you visit my YouTube Channel – YouTube.com/ArtLicensingInfo

My channel is also connected to my Google+ social media account so anytime I add a video it automatically posts to Google+.

You can CLICK HERE to download the Photoshop file YouTube Channel Art template and create yours too!

When I was updating my art, I noticed that you can also add a Channel Trailer – a short video (they suggest less than 1 minute) that explains what your channel is about.  That will be next on my list – stay tuned!

Here’s to your creative success!

– Tara Reed