Friday, October 7, 2011

Better Photos for Your Blog for FREE Using Google Picasa

Like me, you may be relatively new to blogging. You may not have an amazing SLR camera. (Yet) Never fear! There's a way to make your photos look better without spending a cent using Google’s Picasa free photo editing software.
I am NOT a very good photographer. I have a little Sony Cyber Shot my son gave me for my birthday several years ago.
I love it. It has served me well as a family photo tool, and it has enabled me to begin blogging. It is only a 7 megapixel camera, so my photos are not amazing.
Using Picasa, they can be vastly improved, so I can post them without too much shame.
Here's an example of a photo before and after Picasa:
Now, using Picasa to tweak:



See the difference? Picasa allows you to straighten, crop, adjust light, color and add special effects to your photos. This photo has been straightened, cropped, and lightened using "fill light."
Here's another photo of my sweet little nephew a couple of Novembers back:

Here's the same photo after tweaking in Picasa Basic Fixes using cropping, fill light, and auto contrast. Then in Tuning, adjusting highlights and shadows.



Here’s where to find Picasa: 
Click on “Download Picasa 3.8.”
You’ll have to allow it to run an .exe file, agree to the licensing agreement and choose a folder to download it to. (I make mine on my desktop so it’s convenient to open.)
Picasa will ask permission to search your computer for photos, and will store them in a folder for you.
The whole process takes only a few minutes, depending on how many photos you have on your computer.
Picasa is good for web and electronic design, and for emailing photos. Have you ever visited a blog and had it take a LONG TIME to download? They could certainly benefit from using Picasa, which automatically changes photos to a smaller size.  
Picasa works very well for blogging. It allows you to keep an online photo album and easily upload photos to post on your blog. You decide who may see them - whether you want to share them with everyone, with friends only or just view them yourself.
Picasa DOES NOT change your original photos – they’re still in your computer in the original format. They're only tweaked in your Picasa album.
To preserve the editing, any photos you tweak in Picasa can be emailed to yourself and treated as you would any emailed photo.
At work, every year I choose favorite photos from the past year to enlarge and have printed on canvas. We hang them in our hallways. I couldn’t figure out why they looked so good the first year I did it, and so bad the next! I didn’t know Picasa automatically made it a smaller pixel size, therefore not crisp and clear when you blow it up. If you want to do that, it’s better to use a program like Microsoft Office Picture Manager.
It is best to learn how to use Picasa by just playing around with it. I don't usually use the special effects, but the ability to adjust lighting, cropping and straightening have made me appear to take much better photos than I really do! Thank you Google Picasa!
Word for the Day:

1 Corinthians 13:12

For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.

May you see more fully today than yesterday, know and be known and loved more fully as well!
-Revi

8 comments:

Katie said...

I use Picasa and love it! Great suggestion for anyone that would like to improve their photos.

d e l i g h t said...

Isn't it amazing what photo editing can do! Thank you so much for visiting my blog and for your sweet comment.
Linda

A Cozy Cottage in the City said...

Hi Revi,

What wonderful advice on picture editing! Thanks for that! I haven't tried picasa yet, but I just may. :) Thank you also for stopping by my page & leaving a comment. I am enjoying reading through your blog, and am your newest follower. :) Take care and have a most wonderful upcoming weekend!

Blessings,
Jessie

Sharon, aka Bootersmom03 said...

Thanks for sharing! I need all the help I can get!

Ricki Jill Treleaven said...

Never tried Picasa. I use Photobucket. Have you ever tried it?

Town and Country Gals said...

Revi,
The after photos look amazing! I have never tried picasa, but have used picnik, have you tried it? It's pretty easy, but I will check it out!
Rebecca

Rosemary@villabarnes said...

I love playing with photo editing. In fact, I just got through doing it. Considering doing a post with photos I never shared, and some new and improved older ones.

Jen said...

Your pictures do look MUCH better after a little tweaking! Nice job! Thanks for stopping by my blog! Jen @ www.icantstopcrafting.blogspot.com