Digital images are everywhere these days, and Flickr is prime evidence of that. On their homepage they have some statistics that I always find interesting, and one of them tells you how many images were uploaded in the last minute. It’s quite astonishing, but in a single minute there are normally about 2,400 images being uploaded! Oh yeah, and I can’t forget to say that they serve up 12,000 photos every second.
Flickr is just one photo source…we can’t forget about MySpace, Facebook, and everywhere else that you can upload images to. So what about editing these images so that they look great? Google’s Picasa 2 software is a good option because it has a decent selection of options with a simple interface. Another option is the FastStone Image Viewer which is packed with features, but can be quite overwhelming for those looking to do simple tasks.
And then there is Photoscape: an image editor that is a cross between the two programs. It is a completely free application that combines an extensive list of features with a well-organized interface. Let’s get started by looking at the basic features first…
This wouldn’t really be a photo management program if it didn’t have a built-in photo viewer. There isn’t really much that makes this special, but you can easily rotate and delete a photo with just a single click. You can also scale the size of the thumbnails so that they are either smaller or bigger, but I expected that capability.
The editor is one area where Photoscape really shines over the other applications. It maintains an intuitive tabbed layout for finding settings, and there are a ton of settings to play with. You can add preset gradients, round the corners, apply filters, resize the image, add callout balloons, and much more. In about 4-clicks I was able to transform the image into something quite spectacular:
If you have multiple photos that you need to modify that isn’t a problem. Photoscape has a batch image editor where you can resize multiple images, add frames, or touch-up photos in bulk.
Renaming files is a very important thing for me because I am, well, an organizational freak. I like to have names that matter instead of the typical IMG50288829.JPG, which is what most digital cameras will do. The file renaming portion of Photoscape lets you choose a beginning and ending for a file name, and then for the middle portion you can insert things like a date, sequential number, or the original file name.
–Page Creator & Combiner–
Have you ever wanted to throw several photos onto a single page or just combine multiple images into one? With Photoscape that is a piece of cake. The Page creator has dozens of pre-designed layouts that you can choose from, and all you have to do is drag your images into the box where you want them to be placed:
If being constrained to a template doesn’t work for you, head on over to the Combine tab. There you’ll be able to add as many photos as you want, and they will be placed into a checkerboard fashion, single column, or single row depending on what you’re looking for. You can even throw some rounded corners onto each of the images.
So you’ve been wanting to create an animated GIF but you don’t know how? All you need is Photoscape because creating an animated GIF is as simple as dragging and dropping. You can even go as far as to change the time between transitions and adjust the size of the resulting photo.
–And There’s Still More–
That’s not even everything either! You can do things like print a passport photo, convert RAW images to JPG’s, watch a slideshow of your photos, and tinker with hundreds of settings until your photo is just right.
So what’s the downside with the program? Well, I haven’t really found any. Photoscape is completely free, but you will need to go through an installation process before you can start using it. I guess the only thing that I would like to see them do is create a portable version that requires no installation, that way I can always have access to the program wherever I go.