Google’s Picasa is probably one of the best photo managers available as it makes organizing, managing and sharing photos a lot easier. Its ever growing popularity can be attributed to its simplicity and ease of use. Picasa 2 is currently available as a download for Windows and Linux but a Mac version is expected to be released soon.
Here are some tips for Picasa users to efficiently manage their photo collections:
1. Tag your Photos using Keywords
Select a few photos (Use CTRL + Click), and press CTRL + K to add keywords to your photos. This could help a lot in sorting through and finding a photo later.
2. Geotag Photos using Google Earth
If you’ve got Google Earth installed on your computer, geotagging your photos is a piece of cake. Select the pictures, go to Tools >> Geotag >> Geotag using Google Earth to go to the location where the photos were taken. Position the crosshairs on Google Earth after reaching the location, press Geotag and you’re done!
3. Upload Photos to Flickr from Picasa
Ok, you can obviously upload your pictures to Picasa Web Albums from Picasa, but what if Flickr is your favourite? You cannot use Picasa to upload photos to Flickr, but there’s a third party tool to the rescue.
Picasa2Flickr is how it’s called, and it adds a ‘Send To Flickr’ button to Picasa. Click it, authorize and then you can upload photos to Flickr directly from Picasa.
4. Batch Edit Photos
If you want to edit multiple photos at once in Picasa, use CTRL + Click to select them all. Then, use the option Pictures >> Batch Edit from the menu bar to apply effects to all the photos you’ve selected.
5. Publish to Blogger, Export as HTML Pages
In addition to uploading your photos to your Picasa Web Albums, Picasa makes it easy to upload your photos to a blog hosted on Google’s Blogger Service. Use the options from the Tools menu to share your photos with others on your Blogger Blog.
Picasa can also make HTML Gallery pages for you locally, you can share them around computers. It’s only easier to browse the photos in your browser. Use the Create menu to export photos as HTML Gallery Pages.
6. Gift CD with only selected Photos
There’s only one possibility when creating Gift CDs in Picasa: you can only add an entire folder to a gift CD, not particular photos. There’s a work around though, here’s how:
Do this for the photos you don’t want to be included in the gift CD: Right Click on the photos you want to exclude and select Hide from the menu that appears. Once you’ve done this for all the photos, press the Gift CD option on the toolbar to burn a disk only with those specific photos.
7. Make a Photo Black and White
Five detailed procedures to create black and white copies of your photos are nicely explained.
8. Faster Zooming
When you’re viewing a single photo in Picasa, you can zoom into the photo by using your mouse’s scroll wheel. Or, there’s an even quicker way to zoom: use the left mouse button, draw a diagonal line across the photo, and it gets bigger instantly.
9. Full Screen Photo Viewing
Put your cursor over a photo, press CTRL and then ALT. A full screen view of the picture is shown immediately.
10. Picasa Shortcuts
Picasa has got shortcuts for almost every other action, you can see a list here. Make sure you master them. They could really come handy. Some of my favoites are:
- Ctrl-A: Select all photos in album
- Ctrl-1: View your photos as small thumbnails
- Ctrl-2: View your photos as large thumbnails
- F11: Use Picasa in full-screen mode
- Ctrl-4: Start a slideshow
- Ctrl-3: Open an image in “Edit Mode”
- Ctrl-Shift-H: Flip image horizontally
- Ctrl-Shift-V: Flip image vertically
- Ctrl-Shift-B: Add black and white effect