Last Updated: October 12, 2015 9

What You Need to Know About Picasa

Found In: Photo

Picase is a free software download offered by Google. Basically what Picasa does is to find and organise every single photo that you have on your computer, enable you to edit your photos easily and quickly, create amazing galleries, and can update your Picasa web albums automatically.

How to use Picasa

There are a few very basic steps that you can follow if you want to use Picasa. Follow them carefully in order to achieve success.

  • The first thing you will need to do is to go to http://picasa.google.com/. This is the homepage for Picasa. If you are unable to click on the link to access the website, simply copy and paste it into your URL and press Enter.
  • When you arrive at Picasa you will see towards the right and near the top of the screen that there is a big blue button titled “Download Picasa”. You will be able to get the latest version of Picasa here, regardless of what PC you have when you arrive at the site. The Picasa site will recognise the machine you are using and provide you with the appropriate download.
  • Click on the blue Download link in order to continue.
  • Once Picasa has finished downloading to your machine, open it. You will have several options. You can have the program scan your entire hard drive looking for photos. Or it can just scan My Pictures, My Documents, and Desktop. Decide which one is best for your particular computer. Where do you generally store your photos? If you are organised it will be quicker to use the second option. However if you are completely disorganised and have no idea where half of your photos are then you will want the program to scan your entire hard drive and find them all.
  • The photos that Picasa has found will then automatically appear in the Library viewing folder of the program. You will be able to see all of your photos, even the ones you have forgotten about, quite easily in this view. You will also be able to add photos manually.
  • If you want to edit a particular photo you can start by double clicking on the photo in question.
  • There are a number of basic editing buttons that you will have to become familiar to start off with.
  • Crop: This is fairly obvious and is used in many other programs as well. Basically with crop you can cut out part of your image if that is what you desire. Once you have suitably cropped your picture you can click “Apply” for this change to become saved in the photo that you are editing.
  • Straighten: If the horizon in the photos is skew and you would like to straighten it out a bit, click on this option and play around with the slider until it is as straight as you would like it to be. Once you have finished straightening the photo, click “Apply”. (Remember that if you don’t click on “Apply” your changes will not be saved).
  • Redeye: If there are any redeye problems in the photograph the Picasa can remove them when you click on this button. Picasa will box everything that is a redeye. If it has missed anything you can add it n manually, and if the program has boxed anything that is not a redeye you can tell it to ignore that when making changes. Once you are happy with this, click “Apply”.
  • I’m feeling lucky: This is a very useful button because it requires absolutely no skill on your part. When you click on this button the shading and lighting in the photos will automatically be adjusted. The outcome will be what Picasa thinks is the best (and let me tell you – the program is seldom wrong). This is great for old and faded photos that you want to enhance to bring out their best qualities. The same goes for fuzzy and out of focus pictures. Remember though that Picasa cannot fix everything in a photo. Some photos are just beyond help.
  • Auto Contrast: This button will heighten the contrast of your photo until it is at the level that Picasa program deems to be the most suitable.
  • Auto Colour: If you are working with a photo that is really dull then this button may come in handy. It automatically adjusts the colour in the photos in order to show the photos at its best.
  • Retouch: This button is used for removing blemishes on the photo. Blemishes may be caused by things like dust on the camera lens when the photo was taken. Click on the button and indicate a spot on the photo that you consider to be a blemish. Move your mouse over that spot until the blemish is gone. Once you have done that, click on “Apply” in order to ensure that your changes are saved.
  • Text: This button, like the name says, allows you to add txt anywhere on your photo should you wish to do so. When you have finished inserting text you should always click on the “Apply” button in order to make sure that your changes are saved.
  • Fill light: This button can lighten your photo if you think that it is too dark.
  • On the tuning tab you will have access to the following functions: The “Fill Light” slider, The “Highlights” slider, The “Shadows” slider, The “Colour Temperature” slider, and The “Neutral Colour Picker”. Get used to what each one does.
  • With the effects tab you can “Sharpen”, “Sepia”, “B&W”, “Warmify”, “Film grain”, “Tint”, “Saturation”, “Soft focus”, “Glow”, “Filtered B&W”, “Focal B&W”, and “Graduated Tint”.
  • Then share your digital photographs online.

Using Picasa is quick and easy and you will soon find that you are editing photos like a pro. If you want to find a quick and easy method for editing and sharing photos you should download Picasa today and make all the difference to your old and new photos.