"September" immediately says "back to school", and so does this month's site art with its cheery lace-covered apple, ruled paper, and pencil! Many thanks to our beloved @Manu for complying with my last-minute request to co-opt her recently posted Instagram image and convert it into our banner and backdrop. I hate to use force to get any job done, but I had no choice - you see, I'm still flat out of member contributions through November and for much of 2020. (I kid you not . . . more on that predicament in a bit . . .) So THANK YOU, Manu, for bailing me out!

Manu's image started out looking like this (but without her watermark and the red line around it!):

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Manu then combined several mini versions of this photo to create this one bigger "tiled" version to fit the specs for our background art . . .

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SEPT 2019 Banner 1

For the banner above, I rotated the first image a touch and extracted a 690 x 127-pixel slice, just big enough to fill the top right spot! Then . . . just as I thought I had the best possible banner, Manu surprised me by laying out her cookies again and taking a horizontal shot that also captures the pencil! And that brings us to the following banner, which is gracing our site as we speak:

SEPT 2019 Banner 2 USE

It's really that easy (and fun!) to create your own site art! (I love fiddling around with crops and orientations until I get just the right look!) Anywho, I urge you to consider playing around with your own photos and submitting some art too. As I mentioned earlier, I am still seeking art for most months except December 2019 through March 2020. Please refer to this post for more specific information about how to prep and where to post your site art submissions. And, remember: each of our featured artists gets some great exposure in exchange for this contribution. That exposure starts with a forum intro like this one and concludes with an in-depth Cookier Close-up interview. Not too shabby, eh?!

Since Manu has contributed art in the past, her Close-up can be found here. You'll also want to read more about this special lady and talented tutorialist by checking out her bio, social media links, and portfolio of Cookie Connection tutorials below. Thanks again, Manu!

Manuela Pezzopane, affectionately called Manu by her friends and family, is a fan of everything handmade, and professes to have tried every possible hobby. However, it wasn’t until the end of 2014, when an American friend invited her to a Christmas cookie exchange, that she first discovered decorated cookies. In 2015, after watching Julia M. Usher's videos and signing up on Cookie Connection, Manu finally attempted her own. Since then, cookie decorating has become Manu’s passion. You can follow Manu on Facebook and Instagram, or email her at manubiscottidecorati@gmail.com.

Photo and cookie credits: Manuela Pezzopane

To read all of Manuela's past Made by Manu tutorials, click here

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Thank you so much, @Julia M. Usher, for this lovely post. 

It is always a pleasure to contribute to your wonderful site Cookie Connection. I’ve always felt intimidated by the photography and cropping part but thank you to your tips and links I made it.

I would also candid add...  I can only feel honored that Julia M. Usher reached out and I feel so proud to see my cookies in the banner!🤗🤗🤗  #cookiegoals!!!

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Last but not least, because giving credit it is very important to me! The sparkle to cover this set of cookies with lace came from fellow cookier Margaret of @Cookieria by Margaret, here’s the link to her wonderful cookie she made a few years back: https://www.instagram.com/p/BA...?igshid=6fqbh7dqyrqg

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