Creating Collages for Your Blog Posts - Picasa Tool

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So by now you know the news that Picnik is closing shop coming up in April. For the most part, this does not bother me! Picasa (free photo organizing/editing tool by Google, download link) is picking up the slack (especially in its v3.9 release and hopefully even more so in the upcoming v4.0).

Samples of Picnik Collage Options

However, there was one feature of Picnik that I have yet to meet a match in ease of use. That feature is the collage tool. You could pick a collage box pattern, drop your photos in. Slide them as needed to get the crop just right. And 1-2-3 you were done with a cool looking collage!

Until this feature pops up again in either Google+ or Picasa (or the up and coming Picnik competitor iPiccy.com) - I'm off on another brainstorming session to figure out "the next best thing." So here's what I have come up with.

Picasa does collages. However, they just are not "presets" like Picnik. So here I have charted some different collage patterns that can be a useful reference. For the individual component photos, I am mixing some common crop sizes like square (1:1, aspect 1.0), standard digital photo (4:3, aspect 1.333), 4x6 (aspect 1.5), and HD/Widescreen aspect (16:9, aspect 1.777). By composing with these different shapes, you can create several different interesting patterns. Aspect ratio is simply the mathematics of the ratio of the sides, therefore a square is 1 (equal sides) and the larger the aspect ratio, the WIDER the shape is in relation to its height. Crops that travel in either direction away from the standard 4:3 such as to square or to a wide 16:9 format creates some eye appealing interest! Don't be afraid of the crop tool!

So a quick checklist to create Picasa grid collages is as follows:

  1. look above and pick the pattern you want to use, count how many photos you need to select (2, 3, 4, or 6)
  2. Since we are cropping the photos, we'll want to make a copy so we don't alter the originals - use the export command for the selected photos - use the original resolution setting and put a copy in a temporary folder (exports folder)
  3. now switch to the exports folder for the cropping to begin - crop in the right counts of each shape type according to the collage pattern above that you chose
  4. once the crops are done, select all the photos and use the collage tool button
  5. now we are on the canvas, pick a canvas size in landscape mode and pick a background color of black (or any color of your choosing)
  6. Move the photos around into their approximate positions
  7. size the photos so they are big, but you have enough room on the canvas to fit the entire assembly - coordinate matching side sizes to get alignments
  8. now move them around into their final positions - now mind the gap! - make sure there is a small but noticeable and EVEN gap between all photos
  9. Click the create collage button when completed
  10. Use the crop tool on the overall collage (manual shape mode) to cut off the excess canvas
  11. Use the export tool to create a "blog sized" graphic - 684 pixel max width if sending the image to an ActiveRain post
  12. upload the photo from the "exports" subfolder into your blog post

You can see a sample collage that I created using this technique below:


Further, now let me SHOW you how to do all this since it is probably easier for you to understand once you see it. Here's my tutorial video.

 

If you want to learn more about how to make your blog posts OUTSTANDING by using graphics, be sure and check out my online course "Graphics for Bloggers 101". It is 4.5 hours of pre-recorded instruction that you can watch at your own pace! There is just a few more days left at the introductory discounted rate!

Thanks for coming to the classroom today, I hope you learned something new! :)

 

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  is a Technology Manager residing in NYC who specializes in applied technologies in the fields of Architecture and Real Estate. Craig focuses on finding the best uses of tech as can be used to help a business be more successful. He is keen on always seeing the perspective and viewpoint of his audience and he tailors his teaching to be easily understood. Visit my "Recent Posts" page to see a listing of all that is new in case you missed anything!

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Re-Bloggged 5 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Gloria Matthews 02/12/2012 11:29 AM
  2. Pacita Dimacali 02/15/2012 02:43 AM
  3. Charles Stallions 02/17/2012 08:37 PM
  4. Joni Staples 03/02/2012 08:49 PM
  5. Cheryl Ritchie 03/03/2012 02:54 AM
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Topic:
Real Estate Technology & Tools
Groups:
Active Rain Newbies
BananaTude
Tech Corner
Technology
VBloggers
Tags:
collages
picasa

Comments 105 New Comment

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Rainmaker
1,235,370
Charles Stallions
800-309-3414 - Pensacola, Pace or Gulf Breeze, Fl.
Charles Stallions Real Estate Services

Hi Craig we are trying these out and found yours and another to be so helpful thanks for the post

April 06, 2012 04:54 PM
Rainmaker
124,583
Matt Robinson
Pensacola Real Estate (850) 292-4000
ERA Emerald Coast Realty

I seem to "favorite" your blog posts more than anyone else.  Another very helpful post for us techno-phobes.  Thanks!

October 23, 2012 11:40 AM
Rainmaker
266,253
Inna Ivchenko
Los Angeles / Valley Homes
Mannis Real Estate Group

I'm looking for a collage creator if you use a lot of pictures( 50+), I can not find anything good for my mac. There are some good apps for Ipad and Iphone, but I can not find something easy to use that I can create collage instantly for the event blog. Any advice?

October 29, 2013 01:43 AM
Rainmaker
266,253
Inna Ivchenko
Los Angeles / Valley Homes
Mannis Real Estate Group

I just made a collage using an updated Picasa.

Love it! They did improve it and it is very easy to use.

Thanks for this information~ still  timeless!

October 29, 2013 02:07 AM
Rainer
63,446
Lisa Aguilera
Aguilera Real Estate Team at Keller Williams Tracy
The Aguilera Real Estate Team - Homes in Tracy and Mountain House, Central Valley/East Bay Area California

Thanks for the great info Craig. Another great free collage tool to download is Photoscape. You can add text with it too. Just make sure you save your images at a high enough DPI.

http://www.photoscape.org/ps/main/index.php

October 30, 2013 11:05 AM
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