Talking Tech Friday – Picnik

I took a few crappy pictures of the last Tech Talk meeting with my phone, which helped inspire today’s review – these pictures need help! Luckily, I’d just heard of Picnik, so thought I’d try it out.

What is it?

Picnik is a photo editing website. You can upload pictures from your computer, as well as pull pictures from a variety of web hosts, such as Flickr, Picasa Web Albums, Photobucket, etc.

How does it work?

Picnik actually allows you to edit photos without registering for an account, though you can register for an account, as well as subscribe to a paid account which provides more editing features and no ads. I didn’t register, and made changes to all the photos here, and was able to save them back to my web album without a problem. I’m already thrilled with Picnik, just because I didn’t have to register!

Choosing photos is easy – I wanted to use the pictures I took from my phone, which I then uploaded to the MCLC TechTalk Picasa web album. I clicked on the “Photos” tab, chose “Picasa Web Albums”, and then signed in and allowed Picnik to access my photos. My pictures appear in Picnik, and I can choose which one to edit.

I decided to work on the picture of Stephanie – here’s the original:

Using Picnik’s tools, I cropped the picture, sharpened the image, and played around with a variety of features. You can always undo stuff if you decide you don’t like a change. Picnik offers several tabs – Autofix (which does a quick fix), rotate, crop, resize, exposure, colors, sharpen, and red-eye. There are even more detailed options under each tab.

The other fun tab is “Create”, where you can add effects, text, shapes, speech bubbles, frames, etc. Here I added a frame, and decided my picture looked best in black and white. Here’s the edited picture of Stephanie presenting:

After I finished, I moved to the “Save and Share” tab, where I could choose where to save my photo – either back to Picasa web albums (where I’m given an option to replace the original, or save as a new photo), or choose a variety of other locations, including to my computer. You can also choose to print directly from Picnik, or email the photo.

I thought I’d get a little creative, so I took this picture of the Peoria Public Library:

And came up with this:

And then I couldn’t resist this:

Possible Library Uses

Aside from personal use, or recommending it to patrons, I think Picnik would be very useful for marketing and outreach. There are a lot of fun features to really spice up your photos, allowing you to make some neat images for posters, web sites, flyers, etc. I really love that you can use it for free and without registering, but the price isn’t much for a paid account – about $25 a year, which is well worth it if you find you really use it for your library. Any other suggestions?

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~ by Anali on May 2, 2008.

One Response to “Talking Tech Friday – Picnik”

  1. […] MicroExplosion Media (I agree with this reviewer, I do prefer Picnik) […]

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