Use overlays or not?
For the purposes of the streaming you might sooner or later consider to use some overlay. This overlay is supposed to make your stream look more user friendly, but be careful. Sometimes they can be distracting and force your viewers to leave your stream, if they cover to much space, have bad colors or bad quality.
If you overall decide to use overlay on your stream, I recommend you to use only small one, around the webcam and small box for the Streamlabs – stream labels notifications, because this simple overlay usually looks good and do not distract people. For this reason usually all “big” streamers use only simple overlay, which sometimes show ads and the rest of their stream is focused on them and the game. This make people more attracted to the stream.
How to get an overlay
If you have decided that you want to use an overlay you have to find or create one. Decision if to use personalized one depends on two things, how much time or money you want to invest in your stream. Personalised overlay, which include your logo and hae a color scheme looks more professional, but at the cost of money or time spent in Photoshop. For this reason you might start with a free overlay, which are provided on many pages. I created a list of the pages, where you can find a paid or free overlay. You can download one of them to proceed to the next step.
Fiverr is a webpage where you can find designers, who will create you personalised twitch overlays, emotes panels, animations and many others. You can use their services if you take your stream seriously and do saving money on the visuals.
Placeit.net – provides quite cheap twitch overlays, which looks more professional then free one, on the other hand they are not personalized.
Free overlays allows you to use variety of them for free, personally I think it is the best way to start and if your streams will go big get personalized overlays.
How to install an overlay
If you have successfully chosen and got an overlay to your computer now it is time to put it into the OBS. You add an overlay to the OBS in the sources, where you choose an option to insert an image. Here you find your overlay and put insert it to the scene. Your overlay picture must be located above the display layer, for it to be visible. I recommend to place it even above the webcam layer, because your webcam resolution might be a little bit different then the overlay size and the overlay will hide these shortcomings.
Create your own overlay
If you are creative and skilled person, you might want to spend some time creating your own overlay. This can be done in any painting software. I personally use photoshop and found one video, which can help you how to do it.
For the streaming purposes on different platforms you can use panels under your stream. These panels serve instead of plain text. You can find these panels on the same sites as the previous overlays. One which I fiend personally interesting for the stream beginners is nerdordie.com, which has a feature to create personalized panel for free.