picasa online training course

Picasa lesson 1, Basics 101

What is Picasa

Picasa is a free piece of software from google which you can use to organise, search, edit and share your pictures with.
Don't expect you can edit so very deeply like you would with Photoshop. But for most of us who just need basic editing its enough.

I assume that most who are reading through this Picasa training course have allready downloaded the software from the Picasa website. For those who haven't done this yet, this is the url where you can download the software for free http://picasa.google.com/.

Installation

When we open Picasa for the first time it will ask you where you photos are which you want to add to the library of Picasa. You should know that Picasa will manage all your photos in a library so the first thing you should do is tell the software where it can find these photos.

When you choose the first option Picasa will scan all the folders on your computer for photos. And when i say 'all' i really mean 'all'. In other words depending on the amount of data on your harddrive your computer can take a while before completing this task.

So the most obvious choice would be the second option where only the folders "My documents", "My images" and the desktop will be scanned.

But don't worry you can allways change this in the future when we are working with Picasa.
My suggestion is just to choose the second option this will go alot quicker.
Click on the button "Continue" when you have made your choice.

picasa installation

Photo viewer

Next a configurationwindow will appear for the new picasa photo viewer.
The photo viewer is a small programm which you can use to display photos quickly on your desktop or windows explorer. You can set the picasa photo viewer so that it will be the default photo viewer for all the file types that are supported by picasa photos as well as videos.

If you wish to use this default viewer you select the top option (1) and click the button "Finish".
If you don't want to install it you need to select the second option (2) and click the button "Finish". Personally i prefer this viewer over the windows viewer so i will choose for the first option.
You can choose what you want because you can change this later at any time.
If you only want to use Picasa's photo viewer and not Picasa itself then you first need to install Picasa and also the photo viewer and after that delete Picasa again.

photo viewer configuration
On the bottom of the photo viewer there is a menubar with a few buttons to view the images, small edit functions and uploading them to picasa without needing to open picasa.

By clicking on the buttons in the menubar you can navigate between the images in a folder, zooming in and out on the currently opened image and a few other buttons which we will look into later in this Picasa course. I am not going to give more information about the photo viewer itself in this course because the functions are so obvious and secondly because this is a course about Picasa and not about the photo viewer.
If in any case there is something important to be mentioned about the photo viewer i will give a small comment about it.

picasa menubar
If you install the photo viewer or not when you click the button "Finish" Picasa will automaticly open.

The first thing that Picasa does is to scan the folders on your harddrive ( this can be seen in the bottomright corner of the programm (1)), and will show the found images in the library of picasa (2).

scanning folders