Jan 112013

With Picasa’s Image Processing tools and text tool, so much is possible!  Most people barely touch the surface of these simple creative tools.  I was just playing around with this picture of a pretty orchid:

IMG_4424 (2)

And I think I came up with something worthy of a greeting card, or a poster, or a book cover:


The real joy is how easy this is … just keep clicking on the fun tools available.  If you don’t like what happens, click Undo!  If you do like what happens, try some more!

The Features I used

  1. First I cropped close to the flowers and, thinking of the Rule of Thirds, I put the flowers on the left side of the image. See member video Basic Edits
  2. Saturation – on the third tab – makes the colors more vivid
  3. HDRish – on the fourth tab – this is like a super-sharpen and gives the image some depth, almost 3 dimensional. See member video HDRish = Super Sharpen
  4. Cinemascope – right next to HDRish – this mellows the coloring and adds the top and bottom black bars.
  5. Text – it’s a good idea to save the image before adding text because the positioning is more stable then.  I entered one line of text “a thing of beauty” and selected the AR JULIAN font. (selecting a font among the hundred+ available was the most time-consuming part of this!) I chose a font color by clicking on the purple in the flower, and I used the same color for the font outline.  Then I clicked again to enter a separate item of text for “Is a Joy Forever” and I chose white as the font color, leaving the outline at the same purple.
    See member video: Adding Text to Pictures

Try it.  Just keep playing until you have created a thing of beauty!  Then you can use the File->Order Prints command and make a poster for your wall, or the cover for your picture book, or a t-shirt.  Or use it for a post on Facebook, or a greeting card sent by Send Out Cards, or the home page of your blog or website.

This tip brought to you by Geeks on Tour

Geeks on Tour is a membership website.  There are lots of tutorial videos on editing your pictures with Picasa’s tools.  The first 3 are free for all to view.  To see all of them, you need a Geeks On Tour membership.  It’s only $7/mo or $58/yearly.  Join Today!

Apr 102012

The easy way you can write captions using Picasa is one of my favorite features.  I have a caption on every ‘keeper’ picture in my library.  Picasa also makes it easy to print captions, IF you’re using Picasa to do the printing.  Our member tutorial video: Add Captions to your Photos explains all about captions, another video explains printing: Printing Pictures.

Personally, I never print with Picasa to my printer.  If I want a print, I want it to be professional, so I use the Order Prints feature to send my pictures to Walmart, or Walgreens, or Snapfish etc.  When my pictures are uploaded, they include the text of the caption, but I have yet to find a print provider that includes the ability to print that caption.  If you have found one, please leave a comment below!

Meanwhile, here’s a pretty simple workaround.

Use Text on a Border

You start with a picture that has a caption, like the one below:picture-caption

You may already know that you can use the text tool to copy the caption and stamp it right on the picture.  The problem is that it stamps it right on the picture!  Unless the picture includes a nice blank area where the text can be placed, it is difficult to read.  What we want is a border where you can place the text all by itself.  This is now available with Picasa 3.9. (see member tutorial video: Installing Picasa 3.9 and a Look at Borders)

Just choose the last tab of editing tools and click on the tool called ‘Border.’  Then notice the setting for ‘Caption Height’


Now you have an empty bottom area where you can put the text.  Go back to the first tab of editing tools, click the text tool and click the button to ‘Copy Caption.’  Then just drag the text into the bottom border area.  You may need to adjust the color – if your border was black, make the text white etc.  For more instruction on using the text tool, see our member video: Adding Text to Pictures.

Now, you have the caption written right on the picture itself.  Any service that prints the picture, will be printing the caption as well.


This tip brought to you by Geeks on Tour

Geeks on Tour is a membership website with hundreds of Tutorial Videos on topics of interest to travelers, such as managing digital photos with Picasa, Route-Planning with Streets and Trips, and sharing your travels with a website using Blogger or with friends on Facebook. You can subscribe to our free e-newsletters, or become a paid member and be able to view all of the videos in the Learning Library.