Looking for ideas on how to upgrade your YouTube channel? Here is the step-by-step tutorial on creating a fun video thumbnail using built-in images in Lunacy, free graphic software.

A video thumbnail is the first thing your potential viewers see. It is often a matter of one glance, whether they choose to click on it or not. So let’s create an eye-catching image for a video.

I’ll use a gradient, shadow, layer style, photos, and icons in this tutorial.

Here is the thumbnail I want to make:

How to Design a Fun Thumbnail for a YouTube Video

 Download project for Lunacy

1. Open Lunacy.

How to Design a Fun Thumbnail for a YouTube Video

2. Choose the artboard you want. I’ve picked “Youtube” in the Social Media expander.

How to Design a Fun Thumbnail for a YouTube Video

3. Adjust the zoom to see the full artboard.

How to Design a Fun Thumbnail for a YouTube Video

4. Open the Object tab to see the object tree.

How to Design a Fun Thumbnail for a YouTube Video

5. Select the Rectangle Tool and stretch the shape across the entire artboard.

How to Design a Fun Thumbnail for a YouTube Video

6. Change the color of the rectangle. Choose the fill, for example, a linear gradient. I’ve chosen a double gradient with colors #9DD4FF and #FFC68F.

How to Design a Fun Thumbnail for a YouTube Video

7. Add two center points to the gradient. Use the colors from the gradient’s opposite sides: #9DD4FF and #FFC68F.

How to Design a Fun Thumbnail for a YouTube Video

8. Join the two center points somewhere in the middle of the gradient for a sharp transition.

How to Design a Fun Thumbnail for a YouTube Video

9. Add a small rectangle to the left of the artboard.

How to Design a Fun Thumbnail for a YouTube Video

10. Change the color of the rectangle. I’ve chosen a color: Soft red #DD614A.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

11. Select the Text tool and type in the first part of the caption. The text block will be added to the group with a rectangle automatically.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

12. Adjust the text block. I’ve chosen the font Gadugi Bold, size 165, and the color #FFFFFF.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

13. Adjust the size and position of the text block.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

14. Select the group in the Objects tree and duplicate it. Press Alt, grab the group, and drag the copy under the existing group.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

15. Type in the second part of the caption.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

16. Select the rectangle in the Objects tree and increase its width to cover the area under the text fully.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

17. Open the photos library. Click on the search bar and select the type “Objects.”

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

18. Select multiple photos and add them to your thumbnail. I’ve chosen a lamp-cat, 3D Hands, and an alpaca. Why alpaca? Because it’s awesome and it looks like it knows everything 🙂

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

19. Adjust the rotation and position of all photos.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

20. Choose one of the photos and add shadow to it.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

21. Set up a shadow. I’ve chosen a white shadow color #FFFFFF with an Opacity of 100%, Blur 2, and Spread 20. I’ve left the X and Y positions 0:0.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

22. Now, create a layer style using the right panel.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

23. Enter a name for the layer style in the window that appears. I’ve chosen “Shadow style.”

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

24. Select the rest of the photos without shadow and apply a layer style to them.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

25. Adjust extra shadow if it’s not enough.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

26. Now, let’s add the company or the channel icon to the thumbnail. I’ve opened the icons library and found the Icons8 logo. You can search for any other icons that would suit your project. Just remember to set a link back to us if you are using them for free.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

27. Select an icon and add it to the corner of the thumbnail.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

28. Adjust the position and rotation of the elements until you are happy with the result.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

29. Select all the objects by pressing Ctrl (Cmd) + A on your keyboard. Then click the plus button next to Make Exportable in the right tab to set up export.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

30. Choose the right format from the drop-down menu. In this case, I’ve chosen PNG and JPEG.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

31. Click the Export Selected button to save your image.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

Now you can add a thumbnail to your video.

How to design a fun thumbnail for a YouTube video | picture

Result

By following these steps, you can create a cool and fun thumbnail for your video. Use this tutorial to create your own cool designs, and don’t forget to share your results with us on social media!

Download the project file for Lunacy and see what it is made of. You can customize it by adding different images and text and use it, but remember to set a link to us!

Check out the other Lunacy tutorials to upgrade your skills and learn something new right now:

Follow the Lunacy team on social media and stay tuned for new tutorials:

About the author: Julia G, a wonderful creature responsible for QA and SMM at the Lunacy team.

Try tools for creators by the Icons8 team:

Icons8 Icons8, a library of about 130K+ icons and clip art images
Offline app icons8 Offline app and plugins to drag’n’drop icons and clip art to any design tools
Moose Moose, the big collection of high-quality stock photos
illustrations Ouch! , a library of vector illustrations and collages
Background Remover Background Remover, AI-based online tool for removing background from any photo
Mega Creator Mega Creator, online tool for creating visual content from pre-made elements
Fugue Fugue, royalty free music for videos of any kind
Lunacy Lunacy, free graphic design software with built-in design resources
Smart Upscaler Smart Upscaler, image upscaler to enlarge and enhance images using AI
Generated Photos Generated Photos, unique, worry-free model photos generated by AI
Also, get the lists of free vector software and free photo editing software.
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