Weeks 9 & 10 down, 42 to go!
Hey folks, it’s been busy here in PhotoBookLand (but when is it not?). I’m happy to report that PhotoBookBaby appears to be fully recovered from his first cold and we are doing much better now as well!
Since I’m a bit behind in posting, I made a collage highlighting my favorite pics for weeks 9 and 10 to share with you. What I love about this collage is how easy it was to put together (no messing with Adobe Photoshop and layers etc.). I recently did a quick survey of free online photo collage programs and I have to tell you I’m quite in love with Google’s Picasa. Many of you may be familiar with the program already so I may be a bit late to the party, but for those of you who haven’t tried it, Picasa is a free photo management program (for both PC and Mac) which has some very useful editing and post processing features. While I wasn’t interested in using it as a photo management tool as I already have iPhoto that comes built into my Mac, when I found out that Picasa has a collage tool – I had to check it out. I do a lot of photo uploading for my blog and I need to make adding images as easy and quick as possible, but it still has to look good. After you download the free program, the software detects automatically all photo files on your computer and then catalogs them within the program. You can then click on the photos to select the images you want to be in the collage and then click on the “Create Photo Collage” button (second button to the right of the green “Play” button).
You are then taken to the Collage tool where the program automatically places your photos. From there you can choose from a number of options including size and orientation of the collage, background color and whether or not you want a grid separating the photos. You can also choose from several different types of collages. Below is the “Mosaic” option – my personal favorite.
Here’s a look at the “Picture Pile” collage. What’s great about the program is you can drag to rearrange any of the photos and with the layout below, you can rotate and resize any of the images to your liking.
After you are happy with your collage you finalize it by clicking on “Create Collage” which then leads you to another set of options to further customize your image. You can add text as well as create various image effects such as black and white and color shifts etc.
You can choose to export your final image at full resolution (or less for posting on the web) which leads to some interesting uses for this tool when it comes to making photo books. You could use this to design some creative layouts, especially where a particular photo book company’s software doesn’t allow you to create a similar look. You just upload the finished collage as a regular image and drag and drop into a full bleed (full page) layout. Now there are limitations and Picasa is not intended to be a design tool, but for a fun, quick alternative, think of it as another option in your creative toolbox!
Some other great uses for a tool like this:
- You can print these out on standard 4 x 6 or 5 x 7 prints at your local photo processing store and make your own cards for the holidays (Stores actually charge more to make collage prints when they aren’t any different from regular prints (I suppose you are paying for the use of their online tools, but still material wise, it’s the same!)
- You can post your collages to Facebook or a photo sharing page
- You can email a single collage rather than a lot of individual photos (I emailed a collage of PhotoBookBaby to Grandma recently.)
- This may also be an easy way to lay out 365 photo book at year’s end. You could do a collage for every week – so you’ll end up with roughly a 52 page photo book – very manageable and affordable!
Any other uses you can think of? Please comment below!
P.S. For you iPhone users out there, I found two free apps – Pic Stitch and Dyptic Frames which do something similar, but with lesser features. What’s nice is that it’s on your phone and you can easily make composites for posting to social media.
Hope your 365 project is going well. Any challenges you’ve been having?