Picniking at the zoo

Okay, you know that I am a huge fan of the web based editing software Picnik. I can't rave about it anymore to my friends without sounding obnoxious. However, I love it! Here's a few shots that I took of the girls while at the zoo this week. They were okay shots but with a little creativity, something else was created. Here are a few before and after shots or after's and before's for you to preview.

Big difference don't you think. I'm trying to mimic some of my professional friends effects who use Photoshop. Not quite the same but really good nonetheless for an enthusiast on a budget and with time constraints. No two photographers will shoot the same thing. Photography is an art form, we all know that, as well as, editing and no two editing programs are the same. I promised you a breakdown of what I did on the first shot. Here are the steps.

Found under the Edit Tab.
1. Boosted the color saturation about 8%.
2. Increased the contrast to 10%.
3. Sharpened 10%.

Now, onto the effects. Let me remind you that some of the effects on Picnik are an upgrade to a premium package. However, they are only a few. There is still over 95% of really fantastic effects you can use with the basic (no fee) membership. Yea, free is for me! Okay, here are the next set of steps.

Found under the Create Tab.
1. Go to Sepia. First, you'll see your image to turn into hues of brown. I then faded the effect approximately 40% of it power to have some of the original colors bleed through and still gain a warm antique hue.
2. Click apply to save.
3. Then I applied the Orton-ish effect. This effect will apply a boost of color, bloom and brightness to your image. At first, it can be very drastic and you might like it. However, I lowered the bloom, brightness and fade to again 40%.
4. Click apply to save again.

Voila, your done. Now, the only downside to this editing tool is that you can't go back to each individual step to modify a "layer" like the Photoshop family. There is no layering involved in Picnik. After, you apply an effect or editing step you click apply and your done. At the very best you can undo to go back. However, that means that you undo each step until you get to the step you want to modify and reapply the consequent effects. The upside to this tool is that it is user friendly, basically dummy proof and fun. The staff is great and always adding to the effects tools, too.

Here's the same image with a double matted effect.

This was done very easily, again. I went to "frames" and applied the effect twice to create a double matted look. It was that easy.

Here are a few more.

This one is straight out of the camera or sooc. Hated it!. The white balance was off.

Now, here's the after.

To get to the black and white version, I did this...

1. Crop
2. (under create tab) Applied the black and white effect with a Tiffany Blue filter.
3. (under edit tab) Raised exposure to 25, contrast to 20 and brightness to a subtle 2.
4. (back to effect tab) Orton-ish and raised bloom to 100, brightness to 80 and faded it 50%.
5. Applied a vignette at size 45, strength 15 and faded it 10%.

The last set was changed slightly, however, the changes are noticeable.

SOOC image.

Picniked imaged.

I just applied a 10% Boost effect, as well as, a 10% boost to the sharpness.

So, go on a Picnik and have some fun.


  1. Phenomenal job honey. I wish I understood all you are talking about. I love the picture of Lucia in the zoo. papo

  2. hey there... i understand and they look great! sounds and LOOKS like you understand the philosophy behind photography, which is great! isn't fun?

  3. It looks great, Liza...I have the Nikon Capture NX2 program, which is a Nikon photo-editing program and I rave about it like you do this one. It does all these great effects too....I couldn't live without "unsharp mask" - which is the sharpening tool!!!! Enjoy!! How did we ever live with film!!


Thank you.