Besides using Gmail Themes, you can also use your own custom photos as backgrounds and share them with your friends. There are hundreds of themes to choose from the Gmail theme gallery but if you want to personalize your email, it is a good idea to upload your own pictures.
To customize your Gmail background, simply go to Settings and choose “Select a background image” from the drop-down menu. A screen will pop up and on the left sidebar of this screen, you will see 6 options available for you.
To personalize your Gmail background with your own photo, you must upload an image from your computer or smartphone.Click [Upload photo], select the image and instantly, your photo will become your Gmail background.
All the uploaded photos can be found under [My photos] folder. If you have a BlogSpot/blogger blog, you will also be able to access all the pictures that you uploaded in your blog posts. You can use these pictures as your Gmail background by simply selecting them with your cursor and clicking the [Select] button.
The second option for applying a custom Gmail email background is to copy and paste the image URL from any website on the internet. For example, you can copy URLs of pictures hosted on Pinterest, Flickr, TinyPic, Photobucket, Wikipedia, Facebook, MySpace or Yahoo. The easiest way to copy an image URL from a website is to use a browser like Firefox. Right click on the image and select “copy image location”. Paste the URL on your Gmail background image screen and you should see the full image that you want to use as your background.
The last option for using a custom background is to take a snapshot from your Gmail account through your computer webcam. Click the snapshot link on the Gmail background image screen and an Adobe Flash application will ask you to give Google Mail permission to access your computer camera and microphone. Select “Allow” and you will see your face in the camera. Take several snapshots and choose the best image to use as your Gmail background theme.