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Friday, 31 July 2020

How to Clean an Instant Pot

Thanks to all the different functions, having an Instant Pot can be a terrific experience. But it's a device with a number of small parts and lots of crevices where food can get stuck. That's why proper maintenance is key if you want this appliance to last. Make sure you get the most out of it by learning how to give your Instant Pot a thorough cleaning, one part at a time.


[Edit]Cleaning the Cooker Base

  1. Unplug the appliance and let it cool down. Make sure it's cool to the touch before you get started. This is important because the cooker base is the main part of the Instant Pot that contains the device's microprocessor. That's why it's highly sensitive to getting wet and should never be cleaned while still hot.[1]
    Clean an Instant Pot Step 1.jpg
  2. Use a clean cloth to remove stains. You can use a damp cloth for cleaning the exterior. To clean the interior, make sure the cloth is only slightly damp. If at any point you get the cooker base wet, try to dry it as quickly as possible.[2]
    Clean an Instant Pot Step 2.jpg
  3. Use a toothbrush to reach into the crevices of the cooker base. There's a narrow opening between the heating element and the housing of your Instant Pot. That's where food can get stuck while you use the appliance to prepare meals. A toothbrush can reach into that opening and clean out any possible build-up, so you can just wipe it off with a cloth once it's out.[3]
    Clean an Instant Pot Step 3.jpg

[Edit]Cleaning the Inner Pot and Anti-Block Shield

  1. Take out and wash the inner pot. This part of your Instant Pot is dishwasher safe. That means you can just toss it in there along with the dirty dishes. If you don't have a dishwasher, wash the inner pot by hand, using warm water and dish soap.[4]
    Clean an Instant Pot Step 4.jpg
    • Use baking soda to remove burnt food. Fill the inner pot with water and add of baking soda. Cook this on low heat for a couple of hours. Leave the solution to cool, pour it down the drain, and then use some more baking soda to gently scrub off the remaining burnt food.[5]
    • If you've noticed bluish marks or rainbow colors appearing on the surface of the inner pot, remove them with white vinegar. Pour it in and let it sit for 5 minutes. Rinse out the pot and let it dry.[6]
  2. Remove and wash the anti-block shield. The shield is a round, metal cap that you'll find on the inner side of the lid. Remove it by pushing it toward the rim and then lifting it up. Use warm water and dish soap to wash it, but you can also put it in the dishwasher. [7]
    Clean an Instant Pot Step 5.jpg
  3. Wipe the anti-block shield dry and put it back in place. This is a small part that you can easily misplace, and your Instant Pot can't work properly without it. That's why you should put it back onto the lid right away. Use a clean cloth to dry it and then push it back into its original position. [8]
    Clean an Instant Pot Step 6.jpg

[Edit]Cleaning the Remaining Parts

  1. Take out the sealing ring and wash the lid. You can put it in the dishwasher if you use one. But make sure to use the top rack only. If you don't have a dishwasher, simply give the lid a more thorough washing-up using hot water and dish soap.[9]
    Clean an Instant Pot Step 7.jpg
    • Before you wash the lid, check its valves for dirt and food residues. If you find any, rinse the valves thoroughly using hot water.[10]
  2. Wash the sealing ring separately. You can either toss it in the dishwasher or use warm water and dish soap to wash it by hand. Either way, you should do this regularly since silicone retains smells. When putting it back in place, make sure it sits right. [11]
    Clean an Instant Pot Step 8.jpg
    • Do a vinegar steam to remove bad smells. Put equal parts water and white vinegar into the inner pot. Toss in a couple of lemon peels and close the lid. Select the Steam function and set it to 2 minutes, after which the Instant Pot should smell nice and fresh.[12]
    • If you'd like to avoid bad smells, you can always do it by switching between 2 different sealing rings. Simply use one for making sweet food and another for savory dishes.[13]
  3. Wash the steam rack and condensation collector. The steam rack is dishwasher safe, but you can wash it using warm water and dish soap as well. You might want to use a brush to avoid getting sponge fibers caught on the edges of the rack. The condensation collector should only be washed by hand, also using dish soap.[14]
    Clean an Instant Pot Step 9.jpg



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How to Clean Brass Coins

Brass coins are pretty common in a lot of coin collections, but they may be looking a bit worse for wear after a lot of time in storage. Brass is a pretty sensitive metal, but you can easily clean it with a few household items.[1] Set aside a few minutes of your day to clean off any dirt and rust so your coins can stay in great condition!


[Edit]Removing Dirt and Grime

  1. Rinse your coin with warm, tepid water. Hold your coin beneath the water to get rid of any obvious dirt, rust, and grime. If the coin still looks visibly dirty, very lightly rub and clean the surface with mild soap and a soft cloth. Try not to rub the surface too much, or you could damage the coin.
    Clean Brass Coins Step 1.jpg
    • Don’t confuse rust with patina! Patina is a natural, beneficial, green tint that older metals may develop over time, while rust actively damages the coin. Patina can help protect your brass coins from rust, so you don’t want to wash it off.[2]
  2. Examine the coin with a magnifying glass to find any dirty spots. Hold the glass over the surface and rim of the coin to spot any stubborn sections of dirt or rust. Focus especially on the edges as you search for grime on your coin.[3]
    Clean Brass Coins Step 2.jpg
    • Don’t be discouraged if your coin is still dirty. Brass cleaning can involve a lot of trial and error before you get the results you want!
  3. Pick off dirt and grime with a wet toothpick. Soak 1 end of a toothpick in warm water and gently poke the sections of dirt and rust. Try to lift and nudge the grime off the surface. Don’t scrape or scratch at the problem spots, as tempting as it may be.[4]

    • Scraping the coin can damage the metal.
  4. Blot the coin with a soft cloth or let it air-dry. Dry off both sides of the coin, as well as the rim. You can also place your coin in an open area where it can dry off naturally.[5]

    Clean Brass Coins Step 4.jpg
    • Feel free to dry your coin off in direct sunlight—don’t worry, this won’t damage the metal at all.

[Edit]Giving Your Coins a Deep Clean

  1. Wash your coin with a baking soda paste. Mix of hot water and 1 tbsp (g) of baking soda in a bowl until the ingredients form a thick paste. While wearing gloves, coat your fingers in the paste and very lightly rub it over the surface of your coin. Once the brass coin is completely coated, rinse it off with cool or lukewarm water and let it dry.[6]

    • You don’t need to let the coin soak in the baking soda paste at all.
  2. Rub a dot of regular toothpaste on your coin to clean it. Squeeze a tiny, pea-sized amount of traditional toothpaste onto the tip of a gloved finger. Gently knead the toothpaste into the surface of the brass coin, then rinse it off with lukewarm or cool tap water.[7]

    • Stick with regular toothpaste for this instead of a specialty brand.
  3. Soak your coin in ketchup for 10-20 minutes. Place your brass coin in a plastic cup or container. Cover the coin with regular ketchup, then let it soak for at least 10 minutes. Once the coin has soaked, rinse it off in cool or lukewarm water.[8]

    • You can add a spoonful of water to your ketchup cup so it spreads better over the surface of your coin.
  4. Clean the coin with lemon and salt. Slice a lemon in half and dig out any of the seeds in the center. Sprinkle a pinch of salt over the sliced portion of lemon, then lightly rub the fruit over your coin. Once you’ve gone over both sides of the coin, clean it off with a very soft cloth to get rid of the residue.[9]

  5. Cover your coin in a mixture of salt, white vinegar, and flour. Mix of white vinegar, 1 tsp (2.6 g) of white flour, and 1 tsp (5.9 g) of salt together in a small bowl. While wearing gloves, lightly coat the coin with the paste, then let the mixture soak for an hour. Rinse it off with lukewarm water, then repeat the process on the other side of the coin. Dry off the coin with a soft cloth, or let it air-dry.[10]


  • You don’t have to clean your brass coins! A lot of older coins are more valuable when they look naturally worn.[11]
  • If you’re a big coin collector, you can clean your brass and copper coins at the same time.[12]


  • Don’t use standard cleaning products like detergent, wax, or bleach to clean off your coins. Brass coins are pretty delicate, and these cleaners can do more harm than good.[13]
  • If you’re working with really old coins, consider sending them to a numismatic professional.[14]
  • Don’t store your brass coins with other types of metals. This could cause your coins to oxidize and rust.[15]
  • Avoid using PVC packs to store your coin, as these can do long-term damage to your coins.[16]

[Edit]Things You’ll Need

[Edit]Removing Dirt and Grime

  • Warm water
  • Magnifying glass
  • Toothpick
  • Soft cloth

[Edit]Giving Your Coins a Deep Clean

  • Baking soda
  • Water
  • Bowl
  • Toothpaste
  • Ketchup
  • Plastic container
  • Lemon
  • Salt
  • White vinegar
  • Flour


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How to Put Polaroid Pictures on a Wall

Polaroid pictures are a classic type of instant film photos that are still very popular today. If you have a big Polaroid collection, you might be wondering how you can put them up on your wall to show them off or just enjoy them yourself. There are many ways you can do this to complement the other decor of your space, so feel free to get creative and display your Polaroids in a way that shows off your unique taste and style. Consider things like the amount of Polaroids you have available to display and what kind of aesthetic you’re going for to choose how you want to put them up.


[Edit]Covering a Wall in Polaroids

  1. Choose enough Polaroids to make a large grid that will cover your wall. Decide how big you want the grid of pictures to be and make sure that the size you decide on will fit on the wall that you want to cover. Go through your Polaroid photos and pick out the photos you want to display as part of your Polaroid wall.[1]
    Put Polaroid Pictures on a Wall Step 1.jpg
    • For example, you could make a grid that is 12 photos wide by 14 photos tall. For this, you would need to choose 168 Polaroids.
    • If you don’t have enough Polaroids to completely cover your wall, that’s OK. You can just make a large grid that covers the middle of it, the top half of it, or one side of it. It’s totally up to you and the aesthetic you want to create. You can always add more Polaroids later on, too.
  2. Stick 4 pieces of double-sided tape on the back of a Polaroid. Peel a piece of double-sided tape that is about long off of its roll. Stick it on the back of a Polaroid picture in 1 of the corners. Repeat this for each corner of the photo.[2]
    Put Polaroid Pictures on a Wall Step 2.jpg
    • If you don’t have double-sided tape, you can just use regular clear adhesive tape instead. Just double the tape back over itself, with the sticky side facing out, to create a small loop that is sticky on both sides.
  3. Press the Polaroid photo onto the wall where the top edge of your grid will be. Hold the picture up to the wall and make sure the top edge is straight. Press the photo against the wall and apply pressure to each corner to help the tape adhere to the wall.[3]
    Put Polaroid Pictures on a Wall Step 3.jpg
    • Always start at the top of your grid. That way, you can use the ceiling to help you align the first photo. Otherwise, you might end up with a crooked grid.
  4. Repeat the process to stick photos below the first Polaroid to create a column. Choose all the pictures you want in your first column of Polaroids. Stick double-sided tape on the back of each photo, in all 4 corners, and stick the Polaroids one-by-one below the preceding photo until you complete the column.[4]
    Put Polaroid Pictures on a Wall Step 4.jpg
    • For example, if you decided that your grid is going to be 12 photos tall, stick 11 more pictures right under the first Polaroid.
    • Try to put the edges of all your photos right up against each other, so you end up with a tight, neat grid.
  5. Create adjacent columns of Polaroids to make your grid of pictures. Stick another Polaroid at the top of the wall, right next to the first photo you placed. Fill in the wall below it with an equal number of photos next to the ones in the first column. Keep adding columns until your grid is the width that you want.[5]
    Put Polaroid Pictures on a Wall Step 5.jpg
    • For example, if you want your grid to be 14 photos wide, create 13 columns adjacent to the first one.
    • If you have Polaroids of different sizes or orientations, make sure that all the photos in 1 row are the same size and orientation, so your grid will turn out even.

[Edit]Displaying Polaroids in Creative Ways

  1. Make a photo garland frame to upcycle an old picture frame. Remove the glass and backing from a wood picture frame, if it has them, so you’re left with just the frame. Screw pairs of frame hanging eyelets into the inside vertical edges of the frame, across from one another, and tie a piece of string or wire between them. Clip your Polaroids to the string or wire using clothespins, then hang the frame on your wall.[6]
    Put Polaroid Pictures on a Wall Step 6.jpg
    • You could use 1 large frame that takes up a lot of your wall or use a smaller frame and mix it in with other framed art and pictures on your wall. Get creative to achieve the look that you want for your space.
    • A cool thing about this way to hang Polaroid pictures is that you can keep the frame on your wall and swap out the pictures whenever you want. All you have to do is unclip a photo that you’re tired of and put a new one up.
  2. Clip Polaroids to string lights to create a boho fairy light garland. Hang string lights from your ceiling against the wall or side to side across your wall. Use clothespins to clip your Polaroids to the string light cables between the light bulbs.[7]
    Put Polaroid Pictures on a Wall Step 7.jpg
    • This creates a magical, cozy wall gallery for your Polaroids. You can turn off your main lights and relax in the dim glow of the fairy lights, all while admiring the photos you’ve taken and being reminded of the good memories.
  3. Use a glass picture frame to display Polaroid arrangements. Open up a glass picture frame and lay out multiple Polaroid pictures however you want to display them. Close the glass to sandwich the pictures in place, then hang the frame up on your wall.[8]
    Put Polaroid Pictures on a Wall Step 8.jpg
    • For example, you could use a bunch of overlapping photos to create a busy collage. On the other hand, you could space out just a few to create a more minimal look. It’s totally up to you, so do whatever you think looks best.
    • You can even try sandwiching other things along with the Polaroids in the glass frame to give it a unique touch. For example, you could use dried leaves to give the framed photos an Autumn look.
  4. Put your Polaroids on an old wooden shutter for a shabby chic look. Use clothespins to clip photos to the slats of an old wooden shutter. Hang the shutter up on your wall to display the Polaroids.[9]
    Put Polaroid Pictures on a Wall Step 9.jpg
    • You could make 2 of these shutter galleries and hang them on your wall on either side of a window to make the shutters look like they actually belong to the window.
    • If you don’t have clothespins, you could also use double-sided tape to stick the photos to the slats of the shutter.
  5. Pin Polaroids to a cork, foam, or magnetic board to create a useful decoration. Put a cork board, foam board, or magnetic board up on your wall. Use thumbtacks or another type of pin to stick your Polaroids to a cork board or foam board. Use magnetic clips to put your photos up on a magnetic board.[10]
    Put Polaroid Pictures on a Wall Step 10.jpg
    • These types of boards are great for spaces like home offices or even kitchens, so you can pin up things like work notes or recipes as well.
  6. Stick Polaroids to your wall using colorful washi tape to add fun accents. Washi tape is a decorative paper masking tape that comes in all kinds of different colors and patterns. Place it across the corners or edges of your Polaroid photos and stick them anywhere you want on your wall.[11]
    Put Polaroid Pictures on a Wall Step 11.jpg
    • Washi tape is easy to remove without damaging the surface it is stuck to, so you don’t have to worry about damaging your photos or your wall.

[Edit]Things You’ll Need

[Edit]Covering a Wall in Polaroids

  • Polaroid pictures
  • Double-sided tape


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Thursday, 30 July 2020

How to Preserve Cherries

When you have a plethora of cherries, there are plenty of ways to preserve them so you can enjoy them for months to come. Try canning cherries to keep a stock in your pantry for pies, desserts, or other baking needs. Make maraschino cherries for a tasty treat or addition to cocktails. You can even easily freeze big batches of cherries to add to smoothies, or to use in recipes later down the road.


[Edit]Canned Cherries

  • of cherries, either sour or sweet, stemmed and pitted
  • of water
  • 1.5 to 2 cups (300 to 400 grams) of white sugar

Makes about 32 ounces (2 pints) of canned cherries

[Edit]Maraschino Cherries

  • of maraschino liqueur
  • 16 ounces (1 pint) of sour cherries, stemmed and pitted

Makes 16 ounces (1 pint) of maraschino cherries

[Edit]Frozen Cherries

  • of cherries, stemmed and pitted


[Edit]Making Canned Cherries

  1. Rinse, pit, and stem your cherries. For canning cherries, you can use either sweet or sour varieties. Rinse them under cool water and remove all the stems and pits. To pit the cherry, cut them out with a knife or invest in a cherry pitter to help you pit quicker. While you’re processing the cherries, discard of any that are mushy or rotten. Set the cherries to the side on a clean dish towel when you’re done.[1]

    • of cherries will fill one 16-ounce (1 pint) jar.
    • Use sweet cherries, like rainier or bing, for desserts or to eat on their own.
    • Use sour cherries, like early richmond or morello, for future pie-filling and danish-making purposes.
  2. Make a simple syrup to store the cherries in. Because cherries are already so sweet, you can use less sugar in your simple syrup than you normally would. Depending on your preference, use 1.5 to 2 cups (300 to 400 grams) of white sugar and of water. Heat the sugar and water in a saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until all the sugar has dissolved. Remove the pan from the heat once it’s done.[2]

    • If you want softer cherries, cook them in the simple syrup for about 5 minutes before you take the pan off the heat. Otherwise, you don’t need to cook the cherries at all.
  3. Add about of syrup to each jar. Your of cherries will fill 32 ounces (2 pints), and you can divvy up those ounces between different sizes of jars. Pour about of syrup into each jar you decide to use.[3]

    • Make sure to use clean jars with tight-fitting lids.
  4. Fill each jar to the top with cherries. Take your stemmed and pitted cherries and fill each jar to the brim. Once you’ve done this, tap the jar on the counter or table several times to help the cherries settle into place. If there is excess room after doing this, go ahead and add a few more cherries.[4]

    • Wash your hands before working with the cherries again.
    • How packed you make each jar is up to you. It won’t hurt anything to really stuff them in there. The only risk you run with lightly filling jars is that you might run out of simple syrup and have to make more, but even that doesn’t take much time.
  5. Pour more syrup into each jar, leaving of headspace. Once the cherries are in the jars, add more simple syrup to each one. Stop filling the jar once the syrup reaches the headspace level.[5]

    • This extra space is important in keeping your cherries safe during the hot water bath. Overfilling the jars could potentially cause them to break.
  6. Process the cherries in a hot water bath for 15 minutes. Fill the water bath canner halfway with water and heat it to . Place the filled and sealed jars into the bath, then add more water to cover all the jars by . Put the lid on the canner, and let the jars process for 15 minutes before removing them with rubber tongs or a jar lifter.[6]

    • If you don’t have a hot water bath, use a large, deep pot with a lid instead. Use a thermometer to make sure the water gets to .
  7. Keep unopened, canned cherries for up to 2 years in your pantry. Store the jars of cherries in a cool, dry location. If left unopened, they’ll last for 18 to 24 months, or possibly even longer. Once they’ve been opened, store them in the fridge for 5 to 7 days.[7]
    Preserve Cherries Step 7.jpg
    • If the cherries have an odd smell when you open the jar or develop mold, discard of them immediately.
    • Label the “Date Made” on each jar of cherries.
    • Use canned cherries to make pies and other baked goods. You can also spoon them over ice cream or blend them into a milkshake.

[Edit]Making Maraschino Cherries

  1. Rinse, pit, and stem 16 ounces (1 pint) of sour cherries. The morello cherry is the best known sour cherry, but you can also use the montmorency cherry or the early richmond. Rinse the cherries under cool water and remove all the stems and pits. To remove the pits, cut them out with a sharp knife, or use a cherry pitter to make the process go a little faster.[8]

    • You can buy a cherry pitter online or at a home goods store for less than $10.
  2. Simmer of maraschino liqueur on the stove. Measure out the liqueur into a saucepan and simmer it over medium-high heat. Stir it occasionally to keep the liqueur from burning.[9]

    • If you don’t like maraschino liqueur, you could also use equal amounts of bourbon or brandy to preserve your cherries.
  3. Add the pitted cherries to the simmering liqueur. Once the liqueur is simmering, transfer the stemmed and pitted cherries to the saucepan. Stir them in to coat them in the liqueur.[10]

    • Be careful to not burn yourself on the hot saucepan.
  4. Remove the pan from the heat and let the mixture cool. After you’ve added the cherries, turn off the heat and remove the saucepan from the burner. Let the cherries and liqueur cool down for about 30 minutes.[11]

    • If you were to add the cherries to the jars right away, the heat might cause the glass to shatter.
  5. Transfer the cherries to a glass jar, and then refrigerate them. Use a 16-ounce (1 pint) jar or 2 8-ounce (1/2 pint) jars for the cherries. Carefully spoon the cherries and liqueur into the jar, and then seal the lid on tightly. Put the cherries into the fridge right away.[12]

    • Maraschino cherries make great gifts. Double or triple your batch and make extras to give away to friends and family.
  6. Let the cherries macerate for 2 to 3 days before you eat them. The longer the cherries soak in the liqueur, the more flavorful they will be. You can even let them sit for as long as 2 months before opening them. Just make sure to keep them in the fridge so they are safe to eat.[13]
    Preserve Cherries Step 13.jpg
    • If you eat the cherries too soon, chances are the flavors won’t have had time to mix together yet. They’ll be safe to eat, but they won’t taste as good.
  7. Use opened maraschino cherries within one year. If you keep the opened jars in the fridge, the cherries should be good to eat for 6 to 12 months. If you notice any mold or strange flavors, though, you should get rid of them.[14]

    • Label the jar with the “Date Made.” This will help you remember to use them before they go bad.

[Edit]Making Frozen Cherries

  1. Stem, pit, and sort the cherries before freezing them. Freezing cherries is a great option for whenever you have leftover fruit that you won’t be able to use before it goes bad. There’s no limit for how few or how many you can freeze, except for your available storage space. Remove the stems and pits, and discard any cherries that are mushy or rotten.[15]

    • Don’t rinse the cherries before freezing them. The water will affect the skins and may change the taste and texture after they’re frozen.
    • You definitely don’t have to remove the stems and pits from the cherries, but it does make it a lot easier to use them later as you won’t have to take the time to do it then.
    • Use a cherry pitter to make the process go faster. If you don’t have a pitter, use a sharp knife to cut out the pits.
  2. Spread the cherries on a baking sheet and freeze them for several hours. Make sure there is a little bit of space between each cherry so that they don’t freeze in clumps. Arrange them in a single layer on a baking sheet, then place that sheet in the freezer for 2 to 3 hours.[16]

    • Freezing the cherries on the tray before transferring them to the storage bag will keep the cherries separate, making it easier to remove however many you need for a given recipe. If you put fresh cherries into a bag and froze them, they would form one giant mass.
    • If your freezer isn’t deep enough to accommodate a baking sheet, you could also use a plate.
  3. Transfer the frozen cherries to a plastic bag or freezer-safe container. Once the cherries have frozen through, remove them from the baking sheet. Put them into a large resealable plastic bag or a lidded container that can go in the freezer. Put the bag or container back in the freezer.[17]

    • If you use cherries regularly for things like smoothies, portion them out into snack-sized bags to make your smoothie-making routine a little easier. That way you won’t have to take out the entire bag every time you need a handful of cherries.
  4. Use the cherries within one year of freezing them for the best flavor. The cherries will be safe indefinitely, but the flavor will start to decline after 12 months. To defrost the cherries, put them in a bowl on the counter and let them thaw until they’re no longer frozen, which should take about 30 minutes.[18]

    • Label the bag or container with the “Date Made."


  • You can also dry cherries if you have a dehydrator.
  • Always store your cherries in the fridge until you’re ready to preserve them. This will keep them fresh for longer than if they were to sit out on the counter.[19]

[Edit]Things You’ll Need

[Edit]Canning Cherries

  • Cherry pitter or knife
  • Dish towel
  • Saucepan
  • Wooden spoon
  • Measuring cups
  • Glass jars with lids
  • Water bath canner or deep pot with lid
  • Silicone tongs or jar lifter

[Edit]Making Maraschino Cherries

  • Cherry pitter or knife
  • Saucepan
  • Measuring cup
  • Glass jar(s) with lid(s)
  • Spoon

[Edit]Freezing Cherries

  • Cherry pitter or knife
  • Baking sheet(s)
  • Resealable plastic bags or freezer-safe containers


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How to Promote Your Art Online

Thanks to the meteoric rise of social media, promoting your art online is more important than ever. Though advertising your work on the web may seem complicated or unnerving, especially if you're a more traditional artist, actually doing it is a fun and engaging process.


[Edit]Increasing Your Online Presence

  1. Create an online portfolio to showcase your best work.[1] Your online portfolio should show off 10 to 15 of your best works of art. Try to pick pieces that give a good sense of your style and technique, and make sure to include relevant information like each piece's title, description, medium, and size.[2]
    Promote Your Art Online Step 1.jpg
    • Some artists create unique portfolio websites using services like Squarespace and Wix. Others host their portfolio on free sites like Behance.
    • Make sure to upload high-resolution versions of your art so people can see all the details.
  2. Start an art blog to drive traffic to your portfolio. In addition to your portfolio, consider starting an online blog to keep people updated on your life and work. Online search results rely primarily on text, so posting on your blog regularly will help direct people to your main portfolio.
    Promote Your Art Online Step 2.jpg
    • If you really enjoy writing, you can also use your blog as a platform to discuss your artistic inspirations, favorite creators, and anything else you're passionate about.
    • Some popular blogging services you can sign up for include Blogger, Wordpress, and Medium.
  3. Create social media accounts to reach new fans. To give yourself a real online presence, sign up for a variety of social media services. Posting on these platforms regularly will allow you to connect with new fans and keep people interested in your work over long periods of time.[3]
    Promote Your Art Online Step 3.jpg
    • Post your art on social media so people can share it around. If you're lucky, 1 of your pieces will go viral and direct lots of potential fans back to you.
    • Some great social media platforms for artists include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, and Pinterest.
  4. Put your work on specialty websites to reach people interested in art. Unlike standard social media networks, specialty art websites can give you access to people who understand and appreciate the craft itself. Upload your work to as many of these sites as possible so your art has the greatest amount of reach.[4]
    Promote Your Art Online Step 4.jpg
    • Search online for websites related to your style or medium of choice.
    • Some websites to consider uploading to include DeviantArt, Artstation, 500px, CGSociety, and ConceptArt.


  1. Join online art communities to find other creators. Perhaps the easiest way to connect with artists online is by joining and actively posting in art forums and social media groups.[5] There are thousands of different communities on the web, so search around to find ones that appeal to you.[6]
    Promote Your Art Online Step 5.jpg
    • Different communities have different membership guidelines, so read through a forum or social media group's rules before joining.
    • Large communities are best for getting ideas and promoting your work. Small communities are best for meeting new people.
    • Some popular online communities include the WetCanvas forums, the Artist Daily forums, and Facebook's Artists Trying to Make a Living Creating Art group.
  2. Comment on and share other people's work to build goodwill. When you come across an awesome piece of art on a social media network or specialty art website, take a few moments and leave a comment explaining what you like about it. Then, consider sharing it with others through your social media accounts. Not only does this promote the overall community, but it will make the artist feel good and can help you foster a professional relationship with them.
    Promote Your Art Online Step 6.jpg
    • If you really like a piece of art, consider remaking it or transforming it into something new. Doing this will bring attention to both yourself and the other artist.
    • Try making fan art of your favorite creators and sending it to them. Many artists will share this type of content, and a few may even start following your work after.
    • In addition to promoting their work, consider reaching out to artists directly on social media.
  3. Participate in community projects to meet new people and gain exposure. In real life, artists get together to participate in things like gallery openings and street shows. In the same way, online artists often work together to create artwork compilations, fan magazines, and similar things. Though these projects rarely pay anything, they're a great way to meet other artists and get your work in front of new people.[7]
    Promote Your Art Online Step 7.jpg
    • Participate in projects that match your style or center around subjects you enjoy.
    • These projects are often poorly advertised, so the best way to find them is by following your favorite artists on social media and keeping an eye out for any announcements they share.
  4. Submit your work to online competitions for publicity. Enter your art in as many online contests as you can. Whenever you win, you'll expose a whole new group of people to your art. However, even if you lose most of them, you'll still make the contest's promoters and judges aware of your work.[8]
    Promote Your Art Online Step 8.jpg
    • If a judge or promoter liked your submission, they may start tracking your work. This can lead to jobs and publicity down the road.
    • Some online contests give out monetary prizes, though most simply offer feature spots or other forms of exposure.
    • Websites like Fine Art America and Artists Network host a number of competitions throughout the year.

[Edit]Creating Online Content

  1. Upload lots of different art pieces to engage more people. When promoting yourself online, the key is quantity. The more artwork you put up, the higher chance you'll have of attracting new fans and keeping your current fans happy. These pieces don't need to have the same level of detail as a gallery submission, but they should still be clean and relatively polished.[9]
    Promote Your Art Online Step 9.jpg
    • Try to make at least 1 art-related post every day.
    • Put up 2 or 3 unfinished versions of each piece in addition to the final product. This will help you turn a single work of art into multiple online posts.
    • You can also upload content that isn't your art. Share photos of other art that you like, images that showcase something that inspires you, or other related content that can help people understand who you are as an artist.[10]
  2. Create artwork based around popular topics to help people find you. Even if your art is jaw-droppingly beautiful, most people won't be able to find any of it until you gain more popularity. However, if you create small, topical pieces and post them online, people may stumble across them during their normal browsing sessions. Then, they can follow the piece back to your social media accounts.
    Promote Your Art Online Step 10.jpg
    • Try making pieces based on popular movies, TV shows, video games, and musicians.
    • Pay attention to the trending sections of sites like Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. Doing so will show you what's popular on any given day.
    • Make sure to tag your pieces so that they show up in people's search results.
  3. Make content that shows off your personality to develop a supportive fanbase. When promoting your work online, your personality is just as important as the art itself. People like to support creators that are honest and engaging, so try to make pieces of content that showcase your unique perspectives and opinions.
    Promote Your Art Online Step 11.jpg
    • Share posts on social media that show your studio space, your inspirations, and the process behind creating artworks. This helps to understand how you work and is a very interesting glimpse into the life of an artist.[11]
    • If you have a camera, record yourself talking about the things you're interested in. These types of videos, known as vlogs, are incredibly popular and will make people feel closer to you.
    • If you have a webcam and computer, try hosting creative livestreams on sites like YouTube and Twitch. Doing this will allow you to show off your personality while working on your art.


  • If you're worried about people stealing your art, use a graphic editing program to add a personal watermark to everything.


[Edit]Quick Summary

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How to Focus a Camera

While automatic focus usually does the job, sometimes focusing manually is the key to a great photograph. For a DSLR or SLR camera, set the lens to manual focus, then twist the focus ring until the subject becomes sharp. If you want a focused subject and blurred background, use techniques to achieve a shallow depth of field. For better smartphone photographs, tap the screen to manually focus, and try to keep your phone completely still.


[Edit]Using Manual Focus on a DSLR

  1. Flip the switch on your lens to “MF.” Check the side of your DSLR (digital single-lens reflex) or SLR lens for a small switch labeled “AF - MF” or “A - M.” If the switch is set to “AF,” or automatic focus,” flip it to “MF,” or manual focus.[1]
    Focus a Camera Step 1.jpg
    • While you're getting used to shooting in manual, try photographing still subjects, like flowers or other objects. It will be a lot harder to focus manually if you're shooting moving objects or people.[2]
    • When set to automatic focus, depressing the shutter button halfway automatically adjusts the focus. In manual mode, you’ll rotate the focus ring on the lens.
    • Be sure to switch your camera to manual focus before twisting the focus ring. Adjusting the focusing ring while the camera is in automatic focus may damage the lens.
  2. Twist the focus ring until your subject is sharp. You’ll find 2 rings around a DSLR zoom lens. The one closest to the camera’s body controls zoom, and the one toward the end of the lens controls focus. Peer into the viewfinder, twist the focus ring, and watch different parts of the shot come into focus.[3]
    Focus a Camera Step 2.jpg
    • Play with the focus function as you observe how the shot changes to get a feel for manual adjustment.
    • Look for 2 scales of numbers labeled “ft” and “m” around the focus ring. The number displayed through the viewing window or aligned with a mark tells you where the lens is focusing. If you see 1.25 on the viewer or aligned with an arrow, objects away from the lens are in focus.
    • When you're focusing on your subject, try to make sure the focus is on their eyes, so their eyes appear nice and clear. Then, you can create different looks by adjusting the aperture.[4]
    • If you use a wide aperture, you can create a soft focus in the background. That way, the subject will still be in focus, but the background behind them will be blurred.[5]
  3. Use live view mode to fine tune the focus. The viewfinder, or the small window that you look through while taking a photograph, doesn’t always offer the best representation of focus. If your camera has an LCD screen, switch to live view mode to do a final focus check. Watch your shot on the LCD screen, and twist the focus ring until your subject becomes sharp.[6]
    Focus a Camera Step 3.jpg
    • Most photographers prefer to look through the viewfinder when they take photographs. Holding the camera to your face braces it and minimizes movement. You can still take the photograph using the viewfinder, but use the LCD screen to adjust your focus.
    • Note that once you’ve set the focus, you must keep the camera that distance away from the subject. The subject will become unfocused if it moves outside the range noted on the focus ring. For this reason, autofocus is best for moving objects.
  4. Measure the distance from a still subject to the lens for perfect focus. Recall that the numbers on the focus ring tell you where the lens is focusing. For perfect focus, set your focus distance, then position your subject exactly that distance from the lens.[7]
    Focus a Camera Step 4.jpg
    • For instance, if you’re taking a portrait, place the camera on a tripod, set your focus to , and position the sitter exactly that distance from the camera lens.
    • Measuring works well in a studio setting with still objects, but it probably won’t be an option if you’re shooting in the field. When you can’t make an exact measurement, estimate the distance and adjust the focus using the LCD screen.

[Edit]Adjusting the Depth of Field

  1. Check your camera’s minimum focus distance. The minimum focus distance is how far the lens must be from a subject at full zoom. If you want the subject to be in sharp focus with a blurred background, you’ll need to get as close to the object as possible in full zoom. Search online for your camera or lens model number along with the keywords “minimum focus distance.”[8]
    Focus a Camera Step 5.jpg
    • Your DSLR probably came with a basic kit lens, such as an 18-105 mm with a minimum focus distance of . This means it can’t focus on objects closer than at full zoom.
    • A good macro lens, which is intended for highly detailed close-ups, can focus on objects or less from the lens at full zoom.
    • Point-and-shoot cameras with optical zoom also have minimum focus distances. If you don’t have a DSLR, you can still manipulate the depth of field to achieve a sharply focused subject with a blurred background.[9]
  2. Zoom in on your subject for a shallow depth of field. With your lens at full zoom, position your subject at the minimum focus distance from the tip of the lens. If your minimum focus distance is , the subject should be that far away from the lens.[10]
    Focus a Camera Step 6.jpg
    • Depth of field is the amount of the photograph that appears sharp from the foreground to background. When a photograph is taken at a shallow depth of field, an object closer to the lens appears in sharp focus, and the background is blurred.
  3. Use the largest aperture setting to blur the background. The aperture setting, or the f-stop number, controls the amount of light that enters the lens. A smaller f-stop number, such as f2, corresponds with a larger aperture. A larger aperture results in a shallow depth of field, which yields a sharply focused subject and blurred background.[11]
    Focus a Camera Step 7.jpg
    • Look for a dial on the top of your camera. Set it to “A” or “Av,” which denotes aperture priority mode. In this mode, you set the aperture, and the camera automatically sets shutter speed. In “M,” or manual mode, you select both the aperture and shutter speed.
    • If you have a point-and-shoot camera, you might be able to manually control the aperture, but not all models offer this feature. If you can’t, you should still be able to achieve a shallow depth of field by zooming all the way in at the minimum focus distance.[12]
  4. Put distance between your subject and the background. The more space there is between the subject and background, the blurrier the background will be. Keep as much distance as possible between the subject you’re focusing on and any objects in the background.[13]
    Focus a Camera Step 8.jpg
    • For instance, photographing a flower at least in front of background objects will give you more blur than if there are objects behind it.
    • This principle also applies to smartphone cameras. To a degree, you can achieve the effects of a shallow depth of field, even though phone cameras don’t have optical zoom.[14]
  5. Adjust the shutter speed and ISO, if necessary. A larger aperture means more light enters the lens. This could produce bright, noisy photographs in outdoor settings or other well-lit locations. To decrease brightness while retaining a large aperture, you’ll need to adjust the shutter speed and ISO settings.[15]
    Focus a Camera Step 9.jpg
    • Go with a faster shutter speed to decrease brightness. If the current setting is 200, this means the shutter speed is 1/200 of a second. Try incrementally faster shutter speeds, such as 1/500 or 1/1000, until you achieve your desired brightness.[16]
    • Make sure your ISO is set to 100 or 200. In well-lit conditions, higher ISO settings will produce grainy, noisy photographs.[17]
    • The exact methods for setting shutter speed and ISO vary by camera model, so look through your menu options or check your user manual for specific instructions.

[Edit]Focusing a Smartphone Camera

  1. Tap the screen where you want the camera to focus. To manually focus a smartphone, simply tap on the object as it appears on the screen. You’ll then see a square or rectangle on the object.[18]
    Focus a Camera Step 10.jpg
    • Press and hold the screen to lock the focus on your subject. This means if other objects in the frame change position, your phone will stay focused where you’ve selected.
    • Note that the subject you’ve locked focus on needs to stay put, or it’ll become unfocused. Additionally, keep your phone the same distance from the subject after setting the focus. Don’t bring it closer to or farther away from the subject, or you’ll lose focus.
  2. Keep your phone as still as possible. Unsteady hands are the number 1 reason for blurry cell phone photographs. To guarantee your phone remains still, invest in a tripod designed for smartphones.[19]
    Focus a Camera Step 11.jpg
    • If you don’t have a tripod handy, try bracing the phone on a surface. If you have to hold it in the air, try to keep your arms as close to your body as possible. Hold your breath while taking the photograph, or do your best to slow your breathing.
    • Good lighting can also reduce blur due to shaking. In lower light, the shutter speed is slower, which leaves more time for shaking to blur the image.
  3. Avoid using digital zoom. For DSLR and point-and-shoot cameras, optical zoom is when the lens physically moves to enlarge the subject. Cell phone cameras don’t currently have this feature. A smartphone's zoom function simply crops and digitally enlarges the shot, which lowers image quality.[20]
    Focus a Camera Step 12.jpg
    • Instead of using digital zoom, bring the camera’s lens as close to the subject as possible. Keep in mind most smartphone cameras can’t focus on objects less than from the lens.[21]
  4. Use distance to blur the background. As with DSLR and point-and-shoot cameras, you can manipulate a smartphone camera’s depth of field to blur backgrounds. Tap the screen to manually focus on your subject, and put as much space as possible between it and any objects in the background.[22]
    Focus a Camera Step 13.jpg
    • Check your smartphone camera settings for macro or portrait modes. In these modes, you’ll have an easier time achieving a sharply focused subject with a blurred background.


  • Play around with your camera’s settings. Manually adjusting settings might seem intimidating at first but, with a little tinkering, it’ll become intuitive.
  • Android and iPhone default camera apps only allow you to manually adjust a few settings. If you want more control over your smartphone camera, you can always download a third-party app.[23]

[Edit]Related wikiHows


  1. https://www.cnet.com/how-to/how-to-use-manual-focus-on-your-dslr-lens/
  2. [v161357_b01]. 14 April 2020.
  3. https://www.cnet.com/how-to/how-to-use-manual-focus-on-your-dslr-lens/
  4. [v161393_b01]. 5 May 2020.
  5. [v161393_b01]. 5 May 2020.
  6. https://www.photographytalk.com/photography-articles/6974-how-using-live-view-can-improve-your-photos
  7. https://www.diyphotography.net/six-tips-to-take-great-manual-focus-pictures/
  8. https://www.cnet.com/how-to/how-to-get-blurred-backgrounds-with-a-dslr-kit-lens/
  9. https://www.cnet.com/how-to/how-to-get-blurry-backgrounds-with-a-point-and-shoot/
  10. https://www.cnet.com/how-to/how-to-get-blurred-backgrounds-with-a-dslr-kit-lens/
  11. https://photographylife.com/what-is-aperture-in-photography
  12. https://www.cnet.com/how-to/how-to-get-blurry-backgrounds-with-a-point-and-shoot/
  13. https://www.cnet.com/how-to/how-to-get-blurred-backgrounds-with-a-dslr-kit-lens/
  14. https://www.businessinsider.com/portrait-mode-photos-tips-tricks-google-2017-11#3-dont-stand-too-close-to-the-background-3
  15. https://photographylife.com/what-is-aperture-in-photography
  16. https://photographylife.com/what-is-shutter-speed-in-photography
  17. https://photographylife.com/what-is-iso-in-photography
  18. https://www.popsci.com/take-better-smartphone-photos#page-2
  19. https://www.popsci.com/take-better-smartphone-photos#page-5
  20. https://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2383739,00.asp
  21. https://iphonephotographyschool.com/focus-tips/
  22. https://www.businessinsider.com/portrait-mode-photos-tips-tricks-google-2017-11#3-dont-stand-too-close-to-the-background-3
  23. https://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2383739,00.asp

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