Creating your stamp
Adding a custom stamp to the Snapchat system can be fun and engaging. Now with geofilters Snapchat allows you to upload a stamp to their system that users load at a specific location and time. Snapchat offers some templates and a system to create your own, but in this post we are going to learn how to create a completely custom stamp from the ground up using Adobe’s Photoshop.
Your first step to creating your own Snapchat stamp is to set-up a new Photoshop file with the exact specifications Snapchat requires. For this we will create a new document selecting ‘File > New’ from the toolbar or by using the shortcut ‘command + N’.
Enter in your dimensions and background contents as illustrated above. Your canvas must be exactly 1080 pixels wide and 1920 pixels tall and you must have a transparent background selected. This transparency will allow us to have our stamp act as an overlay and still reveal your snapchat image under the stamp. Click okay and you have a working file for your new stamp.
The next thing we want to do is place in a temporary background image. This could be anything – a selfie, something already in your phone, essentially anything you may use with Snapchat. This will background will only be a guide so we can see what our stamp looks like on top of a snapchat image. To import your image select ‘File > Place Embedded…’ and select your file from it’s location on your computer.
Repeat this step for all the images you are going to use to create your stamp. I will be merging two images for mine. Those two, in addition to my temporary test background allows for three layers for me to edit.
Now I will hide my background by clicking on the eye next to the layer’s icon and name. This function will hide and unhide your layers visually. In this demonstration, I’m going to hide it while I create my stamp.
Now that I have my two layers to make my stamp, I’m going to do a few things to edit them to achieve one stamp. I will edit out the ProCom icon from the logo and place it in the circle next to the CN Tower icon. To do this, I will select my ProCom logo layer from the layers window on the bottom right, then use the magic wand tool (highlighted in red) to select the portion of the logo I wish to copy. In this case it is the blue square and the fillings of the P and the Os. Tip: hold down shift to select multiple regions with your magic wand.
Once you have your regions selected, copy and paste your selection using ‘command + C’ and ‘command + V’. This will create a new layer with your selection. I will go ahead and delete the original layer since I no longer need it for this exercise. Note that my layer name for the logo is ‘Layer 1’ from the previous layer ‘procom-logo’. This is because it’s an entirely new layer, not a copy. I have deleted the old layer. Feel free to rename your new layer by clicking on the layer’s title.
Next I will need to edit the contents of the circle in the CN Tower icon as to not distract from the ProCom logo. To do this, use the marquee tool (illustrated in red) to select the area that you wish to edit. For this I’m using the circular marquee.
Once you’ve created your selection, use the brush or paint bucket tool to fill in the selection you just created. Make sure your foreground colour is set to white, and you have the layer that you wish to edit selected in the layers window.
Next I will resize and move my logo into the circle I just filled in. My ProCom logo is much bigger so I will need to scale this down. Use the selection tool to select the layer you wish to edit. Click on the edge of the layer boundaries on any corner. Hold down ‘shift’ and drag the image from the corner to maintain it’s proportions. Once you’ve scaled down, drag the layer inside to circle to where you want it. You must make sure that the logo layer is above the other layers in your layers window. If below, you will not be able to see this image as it will be buried underneath another layer.
Now that the stamp is created, we can see what it looks like with a photo behind it. Select the eye beside your background layer to once again reveal it.
In this particular case, it seems like we need some more detail so our stamp stands out a bit more. I’ve decided to add a stroke (or outline) to my new stamp. To do this, select the layer you want add a style to and double click on it. A new box will appear allowing you to do a number of things including adding a stroke, shadow, bevel, emboss, etc. Select stroke from the menu, pick your stroke’s size positioning and colour. For this I’ve used a white stroke, positioned outside, at 5 pixels. Selecting the preview box will allow you to see what these changes look at live before you set them.
Now that we’ve got a good looking stroke and our stamp looks good. Click ‘OK’ on your layer style and hide your background once again. We are now ready to save your image and send it to Snapchat.
To save your new Snapchat stamp, select ‘File > Save As…’ from the menu. Name your file in the appropriate location on your computer and select PNG under the image format. Remember, this must be a PNG to maintain transparency and for Snapchat to accept the image.
Now that our file is saved, we just need to confirm that it meets Snapchat’s size requirements. Find your file on your computer and right click ‘Get Info’ or shortcut ‘command + I’ to confirm. In this case our file is only 77KB, much less than the 300KB maximum as per Snapchat’s specifications.
Now we’re good to go and submit our custom stamp to Snapchat!
How To Submit Your Stamp
Go to http://snapchat.com/on-demand, click on ‘Create Now’ and log into your Snapchat account.
Select the dates and times you would like your stamp to be active in the system. Some stamps are often used for events that have an expiry. The more time your stamp is available, the higher the cost.
Next select the locations you wish for your stamp to be available. Much like the timing, the larger the coverage, the higher the cost. Find your location on Google maps and zoom in to the detail you wish to select your boundaries. For this exercise I’ve zoomed into the RCC on Ryerson’s campus. Click on the ‘Draw Fence’ button to begin selecting your boundaries.
Simply click on the corners of the area you wish to have your stamp available in. You can move the corners to create different angles and paths creating one unique shape.
Once you’ve selected your fence, click on the ‘Next’ button and you will be prompted to review your information and select your payment for this geofilter service. All stamps must be approved by Snapchat before they enter the system. Allow for 24 hours processing before your stamp becomes approved and live.