Have you ever gotten a picture via email, or got a cool graphic off the Internet and wanted to turn it into a desktop wallpaper, or throw it on a group of friends, only it happened quite right for what you had planned? For simple changes, it seems a waste to open up a large graphics editing program like The GIMP or Photoshop, especially if all you need to make is re-size it, rotate it, or maybe convert it with a different format.

Well, there is now a solution, a solution that do no matter what type of operating system you use, no matter where you are you can start editing those photos, change your face, spray-paint your car or add tree’s to your barren photos. All you need is a web browser, the latest model of Speed, also a working Internet connection. Point your browser to picnik.com and start editing to your own heart’s content. Picnik.com is a new website (the program is in beta), but from what I can see of it, and in my experience trying out its features, Picnik.com has a light future ahead of it. Aimed primarily at people who don’t have heavy editing needs, Picnik.com is a photo editing system that do right in your browser. click over here

To use Picnik.com, simply head to the webpage and press the whole “Upload Photo” button. This will bring up a record picker so you can upload a photo from your hard drive. Or, if you prefer, Picnik.com is also aware of several popular photo-sharing websites, such as Flickr.com or Facebook.com, and is also integrated with Picasa Web Albums. Finally, you can search Yahoo or Flickr right from within the Picnik.com program, or simply enter the web address where the photo is located. Picnik will parse the website and provide a list of all available images. Simply select the one you want and Picnik will download it in the image editing workspace.

At the time, Picnik provides eight common image editing tools, such as Rotate, Crop, Resize, Exposure, Colors, Sharpen, Red-Eye along with the ever-popular Auto-fix, which efforts to automatically fix levels without any input from the user. For those users familiar with standard photo editing software, these tools will be expected, and work as the user is used to, more than likely.

Here are also offered a package of what are called Creative Tools, which go beyond quick fixes for less-than-perfect photos and – as the name would suggest – allow the user to understand his or her artistic potential. There are currently 20 of these so-called Creative Tools. At the time, all 20 are available to be used (whether the client has signed up for a free account or not). In the future, however, Picnik has announced plans to make available a Premium account. When that happens, only seven of the tools (Sepia, Black & White, Boost, Soften, Vignett, Matte, Border, and Around Edges) will be available for free spent. The remaining tools (Local Contrast, Unsharp Mask, Tint, Infrared Film, Focal B&W, Focal Soften, Doodle, Gooify, Heat Map, Duo-Tone, Lomo-ish, and HDR-ish), can only be available to Premium users. Until the website goes out of beta, however, all 20 tools will be available for all users.

While the Creative Tools are nice, it is the standard editing tools i think make Picnik such a great website. Everyone has photos on their hard drive, but not everyone has the means – or the knowledge – to use a graphics editing program, especially ones as complex as Photoshop before The GIMP. With Picnik, even the most novice users may use pictures and make them look better, almost without go! And don’t care about messing up. First of all, the idea you’re working on is only a replica of the real image. Any graphics uploaded from your hard drive remain intact unless you save over them, with obviously you’ll only be working on a copy of a picture downloaded off the Internet. And even if you do make a mistake, there’s no worry, because Picnik is able to undo any actions, no matter how many, all the way back to the beginning. So try things you might not normally try, as you can always go back!

Once a user is done editing a photo, there are some options available for saving, as well as sharing. Photos may be uploaded to a user’s Flickr, Facebook or Picasa Web Album pages, as well as emailed. They can also be saved to the user’s computer, of course, but can also be make. The print feature, however, is now what the website calls “extra beta.” It appears rather limited at the moment (the individual print options are for full-page or half-page printing).

While Picnik is still obviously an unfinished product, it is amazing to me how good that works. I often had problems with uploading test photos, which was annoying. It seems that the first time I attempted to upload a photo, the process would fail. If I turned around and attempted to upload the exact same photo a second time, it always worked. Whether this is a problem at my end, or a problem with Picnik, I don’t know. Overall, however, there is currently a lot to like about Picnik, and it appears there will be even more to like in the future. It’s too bad that the website will be went into open and premium sections, but that understandable. The site currently has no advertising on it, what is appropriate for a full website. Wouldn’t want too many flashing advertisements to distract users from their own photo! So I could understand the need to have a premium section. And in all honesty, the tools that will remain free are the standard tools. If a user never knew about the premium offerings, I do not feel the user would be disappointed. Frankly, the extra Creative Tools, while nice, are probably better served by a dedicated program. All in all, I am looking forward to new tools and updates to Picnik. It looks to be growing into a wonderful tool for photo lovers who just need to put on a touch-up or two on their photos.