Snapseed – First Try

Interesting! I had to try this! I came across #snapseed recently. What better way to try it but to pick a pretty mundane “I was there” photo. This thing could be fun!

Busy times, so it has been a few days since I shared Otto Münchow’s blog about Snapseed. I have subsequently used it to tweak a number of photos on both an Android phone and found it to be a very useful tool.

From my point of view it’s about being able to edit a photo quickly and easily on either phone or tablet. If I am travelling I like to keep it light. There is little easier than Android with an OTG adapter to load photos from my DSLR, edit them and upload them. Never mind the excellent camera on the Note 4.

The only downside I have found at this stage is the lack of an easy ability to crop the picture. But I have tools for that, so it’s not a problem.

The software has proved effective for all sorts of images, including a mobile scan shot of a precious photo, which needed enlarging. Needless to say it will see a bit of use in the next couple of weeks.

Snapseed is part of the Nik software suite acquired recently by Google, and released free of charge. It’s available on both Android and iOS.

#photography #processing #h1t via Instagram

Snapseed: Last Week’s Instagram — In Flow – Re-Blog

Once a week—or every so often—I will display one of my photos captured and/or processed with Instagram over the last week. It’s a way for me to show photography that usually is quite different from my regular work. Except for the technical details beneath the pictures are displayed without any comments, hoping they will stand […]

via Last Week’s Instagram — In Flow

Something of a first – I have never, on this site, re-blogged a post. This post on Otto Münchow’s excellent blog caught my eye, and the text really interested me.

Late last year I had a quick look for Android processing software. When travelling I tend to carry my cameras and Samsung Note 4, with an OTG hub. No laptops, pro computer gear, large tablets, etc. The software I found for my phone did not impress, though it did work. Put simply it was trying to be desktop software on a little screen. Not great, though I did successfully blog a couple of photos from Vilanculos. With more travel coming up I have been experimenting recently with quick methods of posting to this blog via Instagram, 500px, etc. That’s been fun – more on that later…

Today started with a post from 500px about the 500px RAW software. 500px RAW is, of course, iOS only. There was some discussion of Snapseed as a good raw processing alternative, which sparked some interest as I had never used it.

Then I looked at the wordpress reader and saw this post and its reference to Snapseed!

In case you haven’t heard about Snapseed, it was produced initially for iOS on iPad. Owners Nik Software then further developed it for iPhone and Windows. When Nik Software was taken over by Google, the Windows software was dropped and the system ported to Android. (Thumbnail of the reference on Wikipedia.)

So. Snapseed is on my Android device, and on my iPad. Let’s see what can be achieved! Watch this space.


Blue winged butterfly

Linux and Photos – Hi Performance Low Cost

Blue winged butterfly

Linux and Your Photos

Fed up with the need to frequently upgrade your Windows PC or laptop? Stretching the budget to move to an Apple system? Worried about the cost of Photoshop / Lightroom, etc? Give some though to a Linux system.

For a while now I have been acquiring the odd older laptop and installing Linux. It is not hard, and often a damaged hard drive, which has trashed Windows, but is not totally destroyed, is recovered by the installation. Now my computer has to achieve a few things:

  1. My photography – storage, management and processing of photos;
  2. Music – storage and CD writing;
  3. Internet access – pretty standard;
  4. Work – documents and access to VPN systems.

In other words, pretty much what most people want their home computer to do. With possibly a bit more emphasis on the photographic processing.

In its earlier days, implementing Linux required a bit of “techie” understanding of your computer hardware. Nowadays you have the choice of taking a slightly more complex installation route, which does require some basic understanding of your system, or taking the basic “plug in and go” approach. Many computer users would be easily able to install it on their PC, especially if it is an older machine.

Advantages of using Linux

  • It extends the life of the PC. Because it performs more efficiently than Windows older, smaller PCs will often perform well. I recently loaded Mint Linux 16 (latest version) on to a 2 MB ex Windows Vista system. It performs like new!
  • It is FREE. Simply choose the Linux version you want to use, download and install;
  • Current flavours of Linux support highly effective packages equivalent to similar Windows packages. Browsers, Office, Photography, Music – they’re all there.
  • Most application packages are FREE!

Disadvantages of Linux

  • Linux does not, as a rule, run Windows software. To date I have not found a Windows package which does not have an equivalent, highly effective, Linux / Open Source alternative.
  • Installation of “dual boot” (Windows and Linux co-existing on the same machine) often requires a bit of “techie” knowledge. I don’t run any machines like this, so installations are easy, taking about an hour.
  • Apple does not support the Linux environment, so if you are an Apple user. There are ways, but they are tricky. So if you are into iTunes, you will need Apple or Windows at some point.
  • Some TV services, such as Netflix, are not supported. The “front end” of these services is managed via Microsoft DRM (Digital Rights Management) which has not been made available to Linux developers. That said, I have little problem in the UK running the Freeview catch-up services and live streaming.

From a budget photography perspective Linux offers a solid alternative to the Windows / Apple / Adobe option. Well worth thinking about if you, like me, would prefer to spend your hard earned dollars on lenses than on computers.

My current preference of Linux flavours is Mint Linux – simple, easy to use interface with a good software manager.

What’s that got to do with butterflies? Absolutely nothing. The Linux logo is normally Tux, the Linux penguin below, but I didn’t have a picture of my own, so I used the butterfly, which, by the way, was processed in Luminance HDR and GIMP on a Mint Linux system.

Tux: the Linux penguin Copyright Larry Ewing.

Tux: the Linux penguin Copyright Larry Ewing.

Some Relevant Reading

Amazon offers a broad selection of books about the linux operating system, as well as a selection of books about photo processing with Gimp, the favourite Linux photo editing tool.

Buy Blue and Black butterfly prints from Jeremy Hayden Photography