Friday, April 04, 2014

making a 4x4 picture on a 4x6 canvas in Picasa

Yesterday, someone asked how I print a 4x4 photo. Here's a quick and easy way to do it!

I own Photoshop but I'm too lazy to figure it out completely so I use Picasa (free to download).
One day I stumbled across a way to make a 4x4 print very easily! I was stoked.

Here's the deal. You can crop any photo to a 4x4 in any photo editing software, however, if you send it to be printed, most places will stretch your edited 4x4 to be a standard 4x6. I know there are a few places that will print a 4x4 with white on either side of it but I don't like the quality of printing of any of the places I've heard of that do that. (I think Walgreens?) So you need to fill up the space beside the 4x4 so that your image stays a square.

Here's how to do it in Picasa...

Open Picasa and find 3 photos you want to be 4x4. Crop each of them into a square. To do that, find a picture and double click it. The editing features will open on the left. Go to the crop feature...
on the drop-down menu, click Square: CD Cover...
move the square box up or down until you have the part selected you want in the print...press apply and then save.

If you don't want to edit the images forever, click "save as" and make a new file. Now repeat this process two more times so you end up with 3 square photos. Or perhaps your photos are already square from Instagram so you can skip this step! 

Now, highlight those three square photos by holding down the CTRL button and clicking them...(see them highlighted in blue?)....

or you can drag and drop them into the photo tray at the bottom of the screen on the left...

Now, once you have them selected, go to Create on the Menu bar at the top...
Click "Picture Collage" and when that screens pops open, change the settings to be like this...
Make sure the type of collage is MOSAIC - the Page Format is a 4x6 small print and the orientation of the picture is horizontal/landscape by the little picture of a picture (bottom arrow).

Then click the button that says "create collage." It will look like this for a moment...

Then you will see your finished collage and you will find that collage in the file called Picasa, in a folder called Collages. 

Now here's the fun part. So that print above gives you one 4x4 and two 2x2's. Well now you can switch them so that another picture is 4x4. Let me show you. 

Once your collage is finished and saved....click "edit collage" at the top of the screen...
now you can click on either of the smaller pictures and drag them over to the area with the larger picture and boom - they're switched!
Now click "create collage" again! It will ask you "replace existing" or "create new" and you want to CREATE NEW.
Now repeat the process again for the third picture!

Once you do that, you will have three collages with three photos as a 4x4 and you can send them to the printer just like any other 4x6 picture.

Of course, you can take more time and do 3 different photos on each canvas if you want different photos in 2x2. Just remember, the key to this working is to always crop each photo into a square FIRST before you start the collage. It will not work if you don't.

Now a word.....a photo with a border around it like the one above of my daughter/sister does not print as well. Sometimes part of the border gets cut off. So I have stopped using borders in Instagram because I know I usually want to print them. 

I'm loving the 4x4 prints and I send them to Snapfish which is my favorite for printing. I always upload at full resolution and I do not click the button where I want them to color correct (in the uploading process). I correct all of that in Picasa before I upload them.

I hope this helps! If you have any questions, let me know!

9 comments:

Danielle said...

Great advise, TFS!

Brenda said...

It was me that asked yesterday and thank you so much--I will give this a try--off to download Picasa--now if I change them to 4x4--do I need to do the collage for them to get them printed so they will be printing on 4x6 paper--hope that question is clear? LOL

Katalina-Marie Kruszewski said...

ive never used picasa, but this is a great tutorial, I pinned it for later :)

Suzanne said...

Great tutorial! Thanks for the step by step instructions.

TracieClaiborne said...

Brenda - yes, you can't just make one of them 4x4, it only works this way, on a 4x6 canvas because if you just send one 4x4 in to somewhere like Snapfish, it will stretch the image and make it a 4x6. There are some places that print 4x4 with white on the sides but I don't like the print quality of the ones I've heard of. This is just the way I do it!

Lisa LeClair said...

Yay, thank you :D I don't have Photoshop, and I'm such a dadgum doofus when it comes to stuff like this. This will be super helpful when I upgrade to a better photo printer!

TracieClaiborne said...

Well I just love you for saying "dadgum doofus." LOL!!

Allyson Abraham said...

Hi Tracie,
Thanks for the tutorial....very helpful. The only problem I am still having is that my prints are coming out at 3.5x3.5 instead of 4x4!!! I can't seem to get rid of the border!! Any hints?

Allyson Abraham said...

Disregard my question Tracie....I figured it out myself!! Doh!!!