Do you take crooked photos?

by Chris Guld, www.Geeksontour.com

I’m always snapping photos out the window of a moving RV, and more often than not they come out looking like this one I snapped this summer as we crossed Lake Champlain into Vermont:

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It was such a pretty scene, but this picture is unusable because it’s so crooked (that big orange road marker doesn’t help either!)

Using PIcasa, just click on the straighten tool and you will get a grid of dotted lines and a slider at the bottom. Drag the slider left or right to change the angle of the picture. When the horizon lines up with the grid, click Apply.

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And, just a couple more clicks crops out the road marker and makes the sky bluer.

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Yes!  That’s more like the scene I saw.

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.

Members may want to view the following tutorial videos.  Not a member?  Join now.

All the details of how to make your pictures look better with Picasa are included in the Geeks on Tour new booklet: Beginner’s Guide to Picasa  Check it out … it could make a great gift for all the amateur photographers on your list!

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Overview of Picasa

Overview Presentation of why we like Picasa so much!

http://content.screencast.com/users/ChrisGuld/folders/Showme-Picasa/media/07aa5ce3-9213-4439-9c60-e563a1c4a094/pic3501_overview_controller.swf

Download Video (5.47MB)

Free Picasa Webinar by Google and Geeks on Tour

This Friday, November 13, you can watch a one hour Picasa Seminar on the Web.  Geeks on Tour will be in Mountain View, California to co-host this webinar with Google. 

You can check it out and register for the event by visiting the Picasa Help page. 

Here’s the Webinar description:

New to Picasa? Want to learn how to edit and organize your photos? The Picasa team, along with Chris Guld from Geeks on Tour, will be hosting a free webinar tailored to Picasa newcomers. You will learn quick and easy ways to crop, add effects, change the coloring and improve your photos. Following the demo there will be a Q&A portion hosted by the Picasa team and Geeks on Tour. Hope you can join us!

Register for the event

Picasa 3.5 Import Screen

The latest upgrade to Picasa came out on September 23. They’re calling it 3.5. The biggest change is in the ‘Import Photos’ screen. In the prior version, Import was on 2 screens; first you selected what you wanted to import (All, or Selected, Exclude duplicates or not) then the next screen asked where you wanted them – the folder specification. In Picasa 3.5 it’s all on one screen. So, you have to specify the target folder before you click ‘Import All’ or ‘Import Selected.’ (Tutorial Videos: Import from Camera)

Notice in the screenshot below the Import From, Exclude Duplicates and Progress note are in the upper left. Everything else is at the bottom. Your procedure, therefore, goes from top, to bottom – then left to right.

Picasa 3.5 Import

A couple things to notice:

  • Picasa creates a folder name for you with the current date (2009-10-05 above.) You don’t have to accept that – and you probably shouldn’t. You can delete 2009-10-05 and type anything there that you want. I usually put all pictures in a folder for the month, so I put 200910 in that place. In the older version, it would remember the folder name where I put the last imported batch of pictures – I could just select 200910 from a dropdown list. It doesn’t seem to do that anymore, but I can just type it in again and the pictures all go to the same place.
  • There is a new option to ‘Upload.’ This means that you can upload to your web albums at the same time that you import to your pictures on your computer. I would never do that, because I like to look at the pictures and do a little editing before uploading.

 

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.

Members may want to view the following tutorial videos.  Not a member?  Join now.

Picasa 3.5 released

Yesterday afternoon, Google announced that they had released a new version of Picasa – version 3.5.  Probably the biggest new feature is that Face recognition (that has been part of Picasa Web Albums for a while) is now part of Picasa on your computer.

But, more than Faces, I’m excited about Places.  Geotagging has been greatly improved in this version, instead of requiring that you use Google Earth, they have embedded a full Google Maps ‘Places’ pane right into Picasa.  Placing a photo at a place on the map is as simple as clicking on the photo and clicking at the place on the map.  I show you how to do this in the video below. (Tutorial Videos:Geotagging)

Geotagging Video:

http://content.screencast.com/users/ChrisGuld/folders/Showme-Picasa/media/8c954959-6a4d-4415-8ba7-7364b9fba26a/pic329_35geotag_controller.swf

Other welcome new features include the ability to edit captions – you can now insert, delete, copy and paste – whereas, in earlier versions, all you could do is type and backspace. (Tutorial Videos: Add Captions to your Photos)

For some people the new ability to change the date on a photo will be a godsend.  Didn’t notice that your camera had the wrong date on it?  No problem, just select the affected photos and click Tools, Adjust Date and Time!

You will see a big change in the import feature. ( Tutorial Videos:Import from Camera ) They’ve put all the options on one screen rather than making you click ‘Next’ – and they’ve added the ability to upload to your web albums at the same time you import to your computer.  I’m not sure I like all the changes here – my advice is to be careful.  Don’t just click ‘OK’ – make sure to read the screen and understand all the options.

One very exciting thing to me is that Picasa now recognizes the 3g2 format of video that my cell phone takes.

Over the next few weeks, Picasa will be prompting you to download the upgrade.  If you want it now – and I don’t see any reason why not – you can manually download it at Picasa.Google.com

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.

Members may want to view the following tutorial videos.  Not a member?  Join now.