©2016 by Donald R. Snow
Sections of the Class Notes This page was last updated 2016-02-15.
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  1. Instructor is Donald R. Snow ( snowd@math.byu.edu ) of Provo and St. George, Utah.
  2. These notes with the Internet links active are posted on http://uvtagg.org/classes/dons/dons-classes.html .
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  4. This class will discuss ways to organize and present your digital photos using the free programs Picasa and Photo FilmStrip.

  6. Preliminaries
    1. Be sure to set the date, time, and GPS setting, if it has one, on your digital camera.
    2. Be sure your digital photos are backed up somewhere other than just in your own home, so in a disaster you don't lose them all.
    3. There is no "right" way to do any of this, so use what works for you; these procedures are what I have developed over several years
  7. My procedure for photos from camera or scanned
    1. Remove the card from the camera and put it in a USB card reader connected to my computer
    2. Go through the photos on the card and delete the ones not to keep 
    3. Copy the photos from the card to a subfolder YYYY (labeled for the year) in a folder called "Photos by Date" -- these I work on
    4. Move the photos from the card to a subfolder YYYY (labeled for the year) in a folder called "Graphics Originals" -- these I keep so I can always go back to an original, if I ever need to
    5. Use a freeware program to rename the copies in "Photos by Date" by extracting the date and time of the photo from the metadata and putting it in front of the photo name using the International Date Format YYYY-MM-DD so they sort chronologically -- NAMEXIF is a free program from -- http://www.digicamsoft.com/softnamexif.html  
    6. For scanned photos and slides where metadata has date scanned, write the approximate date taken in front by hand
    7. Add "PHT-" at the start of the names so all photos can be selected (or unselected)
    8. Add descriptive terms in file names, e.g. people, location, event, after the date and time, but before the camera photo numbering; I keep the camera photo numbering, such as IMG #NNNN, so I can find that original in Graphics Originals, if I ever need another copy
    9. With this procedure photos are easy to find and sort by date, person, location, etc., using the freeware program EVERYTHING -- http://www.voidtools.com/ -- or in any folder


  8. Free from Google -- http://picasa.google.com -- very helpful to organize your digital photos and does some image editing; will only be available from Google until Mar 2016, but will undoubtedly be downloadable from elsewhere later; will continue to work, but won't be updated
  9. Google is replacing PICASA with the online GOOGLE PHOTOS, so you upload your photos and work online and not on your own computer; has some new features and works on all your mobile devices, but requires the Internet -- see the PICASA Blog for more details -- http://googlephotos.blogspot.com/
  10. Tutorials and helps
    1. https://support.google.com/picasa/?hl=en -- Google helps for PICASA
    2. http://sites.google.com/site/picasaresources/faq#TOC -- Much information starting with installation -- good place to start learning about PICASA
    3. http://www.top-windows-tutorials.com/picasa.html -- Free tutorials
    4. http://www.learningelectric.com/picasa2/ -- many free tutorials about PICASA, but looks like some may be for earlier versions of PICASA
    5. http://picasatutorials.com/2009/02/picasa-tip-picasa-web-albums/ -- Tutorials by Geeks on Tour -- some are free, but most are $ 
  11. PICASA does NOT copy or change your photos, only puts links to them
    1. Albums in PICASA are storage places for information and links to your photos -- So deleting an album in PICASA only deletes the links and information and not the photos from your computer
    2. People albums in PICASA are storage places for links to that person in all the photos
    3. Folders are your hard drive storage places for photos, so DON'T DELETE A FOLDER in PICASA, unless you want to delete all its photos from your computer
    4. Repeat:  DELETE ALBUMS, NOT FOLDERS, in PICASA, unless you want to get rid of the pictures
  12. Before you run PICASA set the preference to tell it which folder or folders to work on or else it does your entire hard drive
    1. Duplicate photos get indexed more than once in PICASA, so move duplicates out of the folders you set it to work on  
    2. AWESOME DUPLICATE PHOTO FINDER -- http://www.duplicate-finder.com -- is a helpful freeware program to help you find and delete duplicate photos
  13. Tagging faces in your photos -- http://support.google.com/picasa/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=156272
    1. When first run, PICASA looks at all photos in the prescribed folders and makes an album of photos in each folder with the name of the folder as the title 
    2. It then makes small thumbnails views of all faces in all the photos 
    3. It uses facial recognition to sort the thumbnails into groups that it thinks are the same person from all the photos
    4. You give a name to each thumbnail group to form "People Albums", in addition to the folder albums it has already created 
    5. Single clicking a thumbnail shows a list on right side of screen of other people in that photo
    6. Double clicking a thumbnail shows the full photo so you can see the context and other people in it; double clicking again takes you back to the thumbnail group 
    7. For people that don't need to be identified, e.g. strangers on the street, there is an Ignore button
    8. PICASA gives you options to confirm or deny thumbnails it thinks belong in the group
    9. As you confirm thumbnails in a group PICASA now has more information and usually suggests more thumbnails it thinks might be that person for you to confirm or deny; to see just the new suggestions click on the box near the top right of the group; the facial recognition algorithm isn't perfect, but is very helpful
    10. If a person wasn't "thumbnailed" automatically in a photo, you can manually thumbnail them with "Add a Person Manually" (lower right hand side) -- PICASA seems to have a bug so this button doesn't always show up when it should; if it's not there, try going out and back into the photo from a different screen to get the "Add a Person Manually" button to show up
    11. Slider arrow at lower right of screen expands or contracts the thumbnails and photos
    12. Can save person name tags to the photo EXIF data by going to Tools > Options > Name Tags > Store Name Tags in Photo -- Then by clicking on a person album and selecting thumbnails it will store the name tag you enter in the EXIF data of each of those photos; commas between names make names go into the EXIF data on separate lines; this procedure in PICASA actually changes the photo file, not just a link to it 
  14. When viewing the full photo you can show the EXIF data, including name tags, by clicking the "i" button (lower right)
  15. PICASA has some photo editing tools in upper left corner when viewing the full photo, e.g. cropping, red eye, color correction, and straighten
  16. If your PICASA database gets corrupted, you can rebuild it, but first read the directions on the Help menu, so you don't lose all your previous work
  17. PICASA does much more than discussed here, including a way to backup your photos with the PICASA database to transfer to another computer
  18. Picasa Web Albums, a free online storage website, is being changed to GOOGLE PHOTOS; I never used Picasa Web Albums since it only saved smaller versions of the photos and not the full sized ones 
  19. Microsoft has a free photo organizer called WINDOWS LIVE PHOTO GALLERY that also has facial recognition and additional features -- see my notes about it on my website

  21. PICASA will do some slideshows of albums by highlighting the album and clicking View > Slideshow -- shows full screen views of the thumbnails or photos for that album person or album
  22. FASTSTONE IMAGE VIEWER -- http://www.faststone.org/ -- Freeware image viewer and editor, many features, easy to learn, does slideshows of images in any folder -- see Overview of FastStone Image Viewer
  23. IRFANVIEW -- http://www.irfanview.com/ -- Freeware, popular photo editor and viewer, many features, easy to use, be sure to download the plug-ins too -- see Irfanview Tutorials 

  25. Freeware program that makes "Ken Burns-type" slideshows of selected photos easily-- see YouTube  Video About Photo FilmStrip  (5 mins - ignore the first minute about installing it in Linux)
  26. Download from http://www.photofilmstrip.org/ -- click on "en" (upper right corner) for English
  27. Step 1 - Select photos and music
    1. Go through photos and put what to include in a folder -- Which photos will tell the story best?
    2. Sort the photos the way you will want them in the video, can get them in the order you want by putting numbers in front of names, 10, 20, 30, etc., that is 10-PHT-1995-08-02-SnowFamilyVacationTripToYellowstone-...jpg, 20-PHT-1995-08-02-SnowFamilyByOldFaithful-...jpg, etc. -- I use numbers spaced apart, e.g. 10, 20, 30, etc., so I can use numbers in between for photos I want there
    3. Select music, if desired, and edit for length -- must be in wav or mp3 format for PHOTO FILMSTRIP
    4. Can make a title slide by an image program, text editor, screenshot, or PowerPoint template
  28. Step 2 - Start a new project and customize the motion paths
    1. Set parameters -- aspect ratio, length of time or include audio file and that sets the length of time
    2. Drag and drop photos from folder into the film strip -- they will enter in the order they were in the folder -- can move them around, if desired
    3. Can apply picture effects - black and white and sepia
    4. Some transition effects - roll, fade
    5. Set starting and ending rectangles for motion for each slide to give “Ken Burns” effect and set time to show slide 
    6. Add subtitles (captions), if desired, to identify people, dates, places, and events
  29. Step 3 - Render the video (render = make)
    1. At start render a draft copy at medium resolution to see how it looks and make changes before rendering in Full_HD which may take several minutes
    2. For viewing in North America set the type to NTSC -- default in program is PAL, since that's standard for Europe
    3. Final rendered formats can be VCD, SVCD, DVD, or Full-HD (1920x1080) resolution-- I usually use Full-HD 
    4. Download the rendered video
    5. BEFORE EXITING, SAVE THE PROJECT, so you can re-edit it later; otherwise you have to start over to make changes


  30. Photos are a major part of family history and organizing, labeling, and finding ways to present them, is an important part of doing family history.
  31. Can upload your good photos to FamilySearch Family Tree now to preserve and share them.

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