How to edit and "re-size" your photos.
Now you have started your photo course you will soon find that you want to do lots of things with your digital photos.
Well the good news is that you can.
You may already have post production software like Photoshop or Lightroom but for those photographers who want to "try before they buy" we recommend that you download Google's free Picasa Photo editing software. It's amazingly simple to use even if you're just starting to take photos, and yes, it's FREE!
There are lots of other free photo editing programmes available but we have tested Picasa, and for us it's the best one to try first. When you have more experience you can judge the other options available and decide if they are more suitable to your needs.
One thing you will need to be able to do for your course is to "resize" your photos so that you can upload them to your tutors, the forums and enter the competitions.
What do we mean "resize" your photos? Well your camera records your photos at a high quality so they are a good enough quality to make BIG prints. That's great, just what we need, but if you want to send your photos to friends and family you need to make your photos smaller in size.
That's where the "resize" comes in, and we need some help to do this. Using an editing programme like Picasa allows us to change the size of our photo and send it anywhere we choose. It's not that tricky and if you follow the instructions below you will soon have it under control. So don't worry, it won't be long before you're an expert in "resizing" your photos, and if you still have a question just ask your tutor for some advice.
So to get you started we have shown you here how simple it can be using the Picasa editing software.
Just follow the steps here and you will be re-sizing your photos like an expert in only a few minutes.
1. Browse for your image in Picasa. If the image you want to resize is not located in your Picasa library, you can add it by clicking file and then selecting Add File to Picasa. Once your file is in your Picasa library, select it.
2. Export the image. Click File and then select Export Picture to Folder. This will open the Export to Folder window. You can specify where you want the photo to be saved to in the "Export location" window.
3. Choose your resize options. In the “Image size” section, choose "Resize to" and move the slider to the right to make your image 640 pixels wide. The pixel size affects the longest edge of the image size, and the other edge will be adjusted automatically. This size should be perfect for uploading to the course forums.
4. Select the desired image quality. Click the "Image quality" dropdown menu. Automatic will attempt to preserve the original quality as much as possible. Maximum will keep as much detail as it can, but will result in higher file sizes. Minimum will result in a much smaller image size at a much lower quality. We suggest using the automatic option as it will be suitable for you to upload your images.
5. Click Export when ready. Your newly adjusted image will be copied to the location that you specified.
Google's Picasa software will allow you to do all of the following, and more!
Picasa can transfer, find, organize, edit, print, and share images. Watch Picasa automatically organize all your pictures into elegant albums by date. Having all your photos in one place means no more time wasted searching for folders or files. The programme works with JPEG, GIF, BMP, PSD, and movie files and is compatible with most digital cameras; it detects your USB driver and imports pictures into albums.
Editing tools include cropping (standard or custom), removal of red-eye, and enhancing using some simple special effects like switching from colour to black and white. Create slide shows set to your MP3s. Integration with Picasa's free Hello instant picture-sharing software lets you share hundreds of photos in seconds. E-mail photos with Picasa's built-in client to take the guesswork out of compressing images, and order photo-lab quality prints or print at home with no mistakes. You can also make instant backups to CD (or to other hard drives) of your photo collections, to organize your photos using labels and stars (just like with Gmail), to write captions for all pictures, and to organize videos as well as pictures.
We will explain how simple it is to edit your photos in Module 12 of the course, but please use this link to see more about Picasa and download your free version to get started now.