Great news this week for Aperture users who use Google’s Picasa Web Albums for sharing photos online. Übermind has released Aperture to Picasa Web Albums, an Aperture plug-in that enables uploading of photos to Picasa from within the Aperture environment. For me, it’s as though someone at Übermind heard me swearing to myself about how a Picasa plugin was exactly what I needed this week: I just returned from a wedding abroad, where I shot around 500 photos of the festivities. The bride and groom are both Picasa users, so they requested that I upload my photos there, instead of to Flickr, which is my usual choice for online photo sharing. “Picasa?” I said to myself. How many hoops am I going to have to jump through to get my photos uploaded? So the timely release of Übermind’s plugin is a welcome surprise.
I’ve been using Flickr for a number of reasons: in addition to its active online community of photographers, I can’t resist the ease with which I am able to export my photos to Flickr directly from Aperture. Connected Flow’s FlickrExport for Aperture has worked well for me, with its ability to resize your photos for the Web using Version Presets and translate Aperture keyword metadata to Flickr keyword “tags”. It even supports geotagging – incorporating latitude and longitude data with Google Earth integration. Flickr is cheap too: the Pro Account costs only $25/year for unlimited uploads, storage, and bandwidth.
FlickrExport for Aperture
But with a Picasa request from the bride and groom and a brand new plugin installed, I decided to give Picasa a go. And I have to say I’m pretty pleased with the results. The plugin works very similarly to FlickrExport: select some photos or an Album and choose Export->Picasa Web Albums. The plugin dialog validates your Picasa account info and allows you to export to an existing online album or create a new one. Photos can be resized via Version Presets on export and keyword metadata is translated to Picasa tags, however keywording is not customizable: there is no way to disable keyword export, and you can’t manipulate keywords on an individual photo basis.
Aperture to Picasa Web Albums
If you are putting photos online that you intend for your audience to download to their computers, Picasa has a major advantage over Flickr: Picasa allows users to download entire albums with one-click to their Picasa desktop client software. This iPhoto-like software is Windows-only, but if you’re using Aperture then this probably isn’t a concern for you. For my wedding photos however, it’s the perfect solution: use Aperture to process the photos and then export high-resolution JPEGs to Picasa. My Windows-using friends can then download the photos directly to their machines and can even crop, adjust or retouch as they please. And in this case, that’s just fine with me.
FlickrExport for Aperture is free to try for 30 days — the demo is limited to 5 photos per upload. After that it costs £14, or about US$26.50. Aperture to Picasa Web Albums is available as a free beta that will expire on July 15, 2007.