I have repeatedly compared other programs to Picnik but I haven’t told you why I like it so much – or I don’t think I have. [It’s another insomniac morning and the brain is not at its best.]
So why do I like it? It’s easy to use, it is relatively quick once it’s loaded [and it gives you amusing little messages while it is loading] and it has over 40 free effects, most of which allow you to tune them further, giving lots more options. You can pay for a more elaborate version, but I haven’t done so although I’m occasionally tempted. You can try out the ‘Premium’ effects for free but it won’t save the results, so you can decide if you think they are worth paying for. Try ‘Dots and Dots’ for some fun.
Find them by clicking on the ‘Create’ tab and then ‘Effects’. This is ‘Boost’ – I left it uncropped because I love what it does to those leaves on the left.
If you don’t like what you’ve done, click on ‘Cancel’ or ‘Undo’. Save by clicking on ‘Save & Share’, then get back to your original image by clicking ‘Continue Editing’ and then ‘Undo’.
If you like more subtle colours, this is ‘Cross Process’.
This is ‘Posterize’ tuned by setting ‘Colours’ at maximum and ‘Detail’ at minimum – looks like layers of sheers to me.
The fun really starts if you click on ‘Sandbox’ in the ‘Create’ section.
This is ‘Crystallize’ with the crystal size increased a bit. When you click on the Sandbox effects, and on some of the others, there is a drop down menu headed ‘Normal’ – I selected ‘Darken’ for this moody look.
This is ‘Smudge’ + ‘Difference’. I love the Smudge effect, lots of inspiration for counted thread embroidery or patchwork.
Recognise ‘Bars’ from Lunapic? This was done by applying and reapplying the HSL filter from Picnik, changing Hue, Saturation and Lightness, and adding effects from the drop down ‘Normal’ menu.
I think these are much more interesting images for embroidery than the original Lunapic colouration.
I used Picnik to make the collage. Like Picasa, it lets you adjust the width of the framing and pick the colour of the frames from within your own images, a feature I like.
The choice of collage arrangements is more restricted than Picasa but you can adjust the size and fit of the images in Picnik, which you can’t in Picasa. There are also some scrapbooking type collages if you want those.
Should you so wish, you can even make your own motivational poster by adding a frame, text, and stickers - and choose the colour for all of them.
If you are interested in editing your images, try this program first. It is easy to use, fun, and offers a huge range of options. It will even fix red-eye – although I haven’t tried it to see how effectively it does so.