How to Put Text on Pictures Using Picasa

Blogging Tips and Tricks at Ordinary Lives

How to put text on a picture (like I do for my memory verses and my Word Filled Wednesday posts) is a question that's come in. My favorite way is to use free tool that's like Photoshop and you work in layers, giving you tremendous flexibility to move and rearrange and change things long after you've done them. But that's far more than a blog post. I DO have a tutorial on how to use and you can order it here for $5. You'll have it in your hands fairly quickly. Email me for it.

Another free tool I use--the one I started with, is Picasa. My sister, the photographer behind SeaLevel 320,Picasa is the one who got me started with Picasa and now I use it as my photo management program. It's wonderful.

To use Picasa:
  • Download Picasa and let it catalog/import your pictures.
  • To view your pictures, look on the left side of the screen. You’ll see your picture files listed there. Click on a file to have it displayed in the central area.
  • You can scroll through those photos using the slide bars/arrow on the right side, just like your Word program.
  • Want to rearrange or organize? Just click, drag and drop the picture into different folders.
To put text on a picture using Picasa:
  • Double click the picture you’d like to put text on.
  • On the left side of the screen, you’ll see a menu. Click Text, it’s in the 3rd row, middle.
  • Select the font you want to try along with font size. All of these things can be tweaked as you’re working on that line of text.
  • To select font color, Click the circle to the right of the T, just below the font size and alignment.
  • Click on the picture and begin typing the line you want added.
  • To move the text, click and drag it to where you’d like it.
  • To set the text on an angle, mouse over the text so the circle with the pointer appears on the right side of the circle. Click and drag that pointer to the angle you want it.
  • Clicking and dragging that pointer on the circle will also allow you to enlarge or shrink the text.
  • Want the text outlined? Go to the menu area on the left and click the circle between the T and the slide bar to select your outlining color.
  • As long as you are working on that particular line of text you can tweak it and change it. Once you start a new line (by clicking outside the text box area on the picture) the only way to go back and change what you’ve done is to use the Clear All button, which is where it can become very frustrating because it clears everything you’ve done since your last save. That’s what pushed me to learn I was tired of losing all the work because something wasn’t lining up right.
Be sure to save your work!!
Here’s how:
  • In the menu area on the left, click Apply. It will apply (stick) your text to the photo.
  • Then click File (upper left hand corner of screen) and select Save As so you can keep an original of your unaltered picture.
  • Name your new file and select the folder you want it stored in.
  • Click Save.
  • Save different variations or save in stages so if you have to clear your work you’ve got something saved with the part you liked.
To lighten the text, like you would for a copyright stamp on a photo:
  • Put the text on the picture.
  • In the menu area, under the color selection circles, there’s a slide bar for Transparency. Click and drag that to the left to fade the text.

There you have it... How to add text to your pictures, using free tools. =) If you're interested in a tutorial on how to use, email me.

So tell me, why do you put text on pictures?


  1. Since I do scrapbooking, I use Creative Memories' "Memory Manager" and "StoryBook 4.0" software.

    I will put text on photos for ID, emphasis of an area or for artistic reasons.

    So easy to spend hours doing this kind of art! :)

  2. I mostly do it for Word-Filled Wednesday, and sometimes for silliness ;) And I use picknik. SOO easy - but I know Picasa is more versatile!


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