Thursday, November 5, 2009

Thing #14 - Picnik

What is Picnik?
Picnik is another online application or program. It's free photo editing software. Instead of installing it onto your computer, it runs right out of your internet browser. You don't have to download or install anything, and it works on any computer. It's easy to use and a whole lot of fun.

What can I do with Picnik?

Picnik packs a lot of punch into its online software. With their Basic Editing tools, you can crop, resize, rotate, or adjust the colors or contrast of your photos. They also have a section of "creative effects" which allows you to add all sorts of artsy effects to your photos. You can darken the corners, make it look like a 1960s photo, boost the colors, turn it into a sketch or heat map, invert the colors, turn the whole photo one color.

Picnik also lets you add text, frames, or clipart (Picnik calls them "stickers") to your photos. They are always adding new seasonal stickers, so for Thanksgiving, you can add turkeys and cornucopias to your photos. Yes, it can be silly or overly artsy, but you could also use it to make a digital e-card to send to family and friends. Or use it to make a quick flyer for an upcoming program at the library.

Picnik lets you open photos that are saved on your computer, or from a website URL that you put in. Picnik is also partnered with Yahoo, so you can use Picnik to do a Yahoo image search and then edit a photo - all within the same window.

You do not have to have an account to use Picnik. However, with a free account, you can link your Picnik account to your Facebook, flickr, MySpace, or Twitter account. This lets you post photos to those sites, or edit photos that you've already posted on those sites. You also have the option of paying for a Premium account. Some of the features (creative effects or off-season clipart, for example) are only available to those who have paid for premium accounts.

Picnik allows you to save your edited photo to your computer, email it to your friends, or print it using your printer.

To complete Thing #14, here's what you have to do:
Visit and click "Get started".

There are a few demo photos on their main page that you can play around with. You can also try out uploading one of your own photos. Write a blog post about Picnik. Do you think you'd use this at your library? Could you imagine using it to help customers?

Bonus: post your creation on your blog!

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