+Jaana Nystrom

Welcome to my Circleverse!

Google+ is my passion: I want to help others to get the most out of it.

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Google+ and your photos

These screenshots and advice are from a desktop computer running Chrome.

For the standard size photos (max 2048 pix wide) there is no limit or quota in storing them to Google+.
You can also share very large images but full size uploads will count against your Google Drive storage quota.  (15 GB free between Gmail, Drive and Google+, 100 GB costs 1.95 USD per month)
The sharing and privacy control is easy: You can disable reshares of your albums, decide who gets to see what and control the visibility of any album.

Did you know that the search from your own Photos tab works in surprising ways:
Try searching with how the image looks like. For instance I searched for "yellow flower":

Account photo limits on Google+ and Picasa Web: 

As you upload more photos and videos in Picasa Web Albums, please keep in mind the following account limits:

Maximum photo size: Each image can be no larger than 100 MB.
Maximum video size: Each video uploaded can be no larger than 1 GB in size.
Maximum number of web albums: 20,000
Maximum number of photos and videos per web album: 2,000
Total storage space: Picasa Web provides 1 GB for photos and videos. Files under certain sizes (Google+ normal uploads) don't count towards this limit.

Google+, Gmail and Google Drive share 15 GB storage together.

Latest improvements / changes to Google+ Photos:

I'm adding content when changes take place. If you notice that something has changed, feel free to leave a comment!

Downloading either edited or original version of an image

Now you can choose which version to download from Google+, be it the Auto Enhanced pic or unedited photo:

Auto Backup photos and Gmail

Now you can save time and insert your Auto Backup photos from your phone into Gmail messages on the web using the new Insert Photo button.

When you click the button, you'll instantly access all the photos that are backed up from your mobile devices, starting with the most recent.

Read more from Gmail blog

How to display the large image thumbnail on Google+ link posts: The size matters

Always make sure at least one photo in the article or on your blog is minimum 506 x 300 pixels in size. It can be resized by HTML in your presentation, but the natural size of that image needs to be at least 506 pixels.

+David Kutcher tested:

If your image is at least 506 pixels wide, it also has a height requirement. This requirement does not seem to be an aspect ratio requirement, but instead a pixel requirement. While 300px tall was successful, 200px tall failed.

There are likely other factors that affect whether a large thumbnail or small thumbnail displays, and which image Google+ uses as the thumbnail when you share your blog post link.

A tip for Blogger or Blogspot users:

If you add black & white images or images with transparent background to Blogger, sometimes the colours appear to be wrong after saving. The culprit may be the Google+ Auto Enhance: The photos reside in Google+ created album for Blogger and if you have Auto Enhance turned on, the photos may change in the process, for instance B&W may look brownish and the transparent part greyish.

Go to your Photos tab, click on Albums view, find an album with the name of your blog (NEVER delete any images inside or this album!), go to the image and turn Auto Enhance off.

You can also control the Auto Enhance on album level:

If you store photos & videos in your Google Drive, you can also choose to view each folder as an album in Google+. Only you will be able to see them in your library until you choose to share them. If you have Auto Awesome or Auto Enhance turned on, then those features will be applied to your photos as normal, but your original drive files will remain intact.

By the way, using at least 507 pixels wide images you'll get the large thumbnail for your blog article on Google+.

Read more about the sharp edges of Blogger from a post by +Adam Auster. Good stuff.

Albums, moving photos and "Photos" tab in Profile view

I did some research as you can see from the post below:
When you check the profile of a person or a Page you can see the "Photos" tab there. The view is different from your own "Photos" in the left side bar (pop-up pillar) view.

Google seems to choose the single photos Highlights and does not show all the photos from posts.
I posted about this on my +Gplus Expertise page, hopefully clarifying the whole set up!

- It is important to name the album before publishing if you are sharing several photos
- Be careful when moving photos

Latest Android update for Photos

Changes with this release to Photos app:

- The “Camera” section is now replaced with “All”, which provides a single view of your Photos, both on your device and your Google+ account

- New Photos Editor (powered by Snapseed!) includes editing tools as well as Looks, which lets you choose from 15 filters to give a new look to your photo

- A new “Folders” section in the Photos menu to easily navigate to local folders

- Auto Backup can now optionally back up your photos and videos from local device folders.

- Scroll through your photos via date range on the left-hand side of the All section
The location of the Sign out button has been moved in this release (on Android only). It used to be in the standard overflow menu on the stream.
It has since been moved to the account specific settings page. A user would need to tap Overflow Menu (from the stream) > Settings > [specific account] > Overflow Menu > Sign out

Read more from the launch post!

Update for a better visibility of shared single images

Editing an already published image

There has been a slight change: When editing a photo from a post one has to click it open in the Photos tab, not directly from the post:

The album visibility order:

You can move albums to the top by adding a new image to an album. Just changing the album name does nothing.  Here is a post with results from my research:

The profile tab for Photos:

There is an update with which I'm not really happy about. The album button where you can view all the Public albums with thumbnails has disappeared and viewing other profiles' photos tab we see the photos the user has been tagged in, then random Photos from posts "albums" (every time you share a photo and don't choose an existing album for it, Google+ creates a new album just for that image) and mixed with those we see albums with quite a number of the photos inside the album displayed...  There's no rhyme nor reason to this.

Just don't delete any photos from the "Photos" tab on your profile:

They are all linked to either posts or albums under the "Photos" tab on your profile.
You can hide those you don't want there: click on the drop down arrow on top of the image then click on " hide from highlights".
That hides the image from your "Photos" tab but doesn't delete it.

+Gerwin Sturm shows how to hide the "Highlighted" photos from view:
First look at your photo tab as "Public" (see below) and then start cleaning up what you don't want to display.

If the profile hasn't created albums lately, all you see are the individual "Photos from posts" albums and have to scroll down a long way to see any of the users actual photo albums.
Not a good update, to my mind.

The Photos tab on your profile is for visitors, there anyone can see your Publicly shared photos.
Who can see what:
You can check by changing the "View profile as" Yourself to Public from the drop down, or even check circle / individual profile's view.  Same goes to the information on your Google+ profile.

The colourful Photos logo on the left pop-up pillar is for your eyes only.
Of course you can share albums from there via a link, too.

Then there's a workaround to see the albums view, pointed to me by fellow TC's:

To come to the album view of another user on G+ you have to edit your URL from album view. Just change the 21-digit G+ ID.
Or for Picasa Web Albums:

How to find Google+ user ID

Uploading photos

When you upload photos to a Google+ album:  The share box that pops out used to bewilder people.
Now there's an improvement: Instead of "Cancel" the box now offers the possibility to either "Share" or "Skip".
The only problem now is that even though I saved the photos to my "Profile photos" album, they didn't end up there but to https://plus.google.com/photos/yourphotos ...  I had to manually copy them to another album.
- And problem solved: It just took a few minutes for the photos to show up in the correct album.

Upload photos and create an album:

Go to the Photos tab on the left side bar. Click on Upload photos.
Choose the photos you wish to upload, then look top left: "Add album". Now you can name the new album. Wait for all the photos to load. Then click on Done at the bottom left.

If you don't wish to tag anyone in the pics, click Skip.

If you don't wish to share the post, again click skip.
Now your album is private to you only.

Update I found 16 Aug:

- Upload a photo to post, choose the album for it!

No more Photos from posts (PFP) album when you use the "Upload from computer" or "Your Google+ photos" on the new post:
Now you can decide where to place the photo, keeping all the interaction in one place. Before sharing, click on the Add to album and choose one.  The image will not appear on Photos from posts anymore.
Works for images shared to Communities, too!

There is a 20 000 album limit and (update NOV 13) 2000 photos per album limit on Google+, same as in Picasa. Some very prolific posters have already met the limit:  When you share a photo and don't choose an album for it, the image will reside in "Photos from posts". However, each time you share an individual photo, a new "album" is created and named with the share date.

To avoid meeting the limit, create a separate album for the pics you share individually and choose that album before sharing.

You can move the photos around from "Photos from posts" to other albums but the sharing has to be exactly the same in the album you move the photos to as the original pic has.

Sharing several uploaded photos in a post also gives the possibility to choose the album before posting, no duplicate in PFP:  "Add to album" shows all your albums in a drop-down.
Unfortunately these images show up as "singles", unless you click open the album.


- It's not possible to create a new album from the drop down
- If you don't choose an album, the image is then placed in the Photos From Posts album
- Sharing a photo from an existing album when you are in the Photos tab still creates a duplicate in the PFP album - no drop-down visible

- One could create one or two "extra" albums for these posts, unless just letting the image reside in the PFP album: Screenshots not meant to be saved, for example

- Sharing a photo via the newly created post and choosing "Your Google+ photos" still creates a duplicate:

Even if you choose the same album from where you shared the photo, you will get a duplicate image in that album.
See this post and this album as an example: The duplicate is now the last image in the album.

If you wish to keep a Public album tidy and without duplicates:
Moving the original image that was shared and duplicated, to a private album, does not change the visibility of the post or the private album it was moved to.

- Sharing photos in Public and placing them in a private album changes the album settings to Public!

- To be able to see all the album images from the post itself, one must click on the album name: Otherwise each photo (I uploaded 3 for this test) is like in a separate album (or a single shared image) and must be viewed separately...  Strange.

See this post for an example:  According to this there's only one photo in the album, when actually there are 24 images.  Someone reported not seeing the album photos from an iPhone app (fixed!). Another that they get an error message when plussing the images:  "Can not be updated."

Perhaps the Google+ Photos Community Manager +Brian Matiash knows more?

I will be updating this tutorial when I know more: If you do tests of your own, please post your findings in the comments!

Adding images from a shared Public post to a private album makes that album Public!

Updated 14 Aug:

- See your Drive photos in Google+ (and a few other improvements)

Ever wish your Google Drive photos could get some of that Google+ goodness? Now’s your chance -- starting today you can see your Google Drive photos and videos in your Google+ library. Your photos stay in Drive, but they’ll also be visible to you in Google+ (and private until you choose to share them).

Once you choose to show Drive photos in Google+ they’ll be organized chronologically, easily searchable, and automatically enhanced to look better than ever. You might even see a few of them combined into animations and panoramas thanks to Auto Awesome. You’ll be able to see your Drive photos on the web as well as in the Google+ Android app.

Read more from Google+ Help Center  and watch this video from the Developers' +Ali Afshar.

While you’re browsing through old holiday and vacation pics on the desktop, you might notice a couple other changes we’ve made to Google+ Photos based on your feedback:

- More control over your Highlights view. You can choose whether or not individual photos are shown in your Highlights, as well as move highlighted photos to the album of your choice.

- Quicker adding to albums. Now you can pick a specific album for your photos right when you’re sharing them on Google+.

Go to your Photos and click the blue tab if you accept:

Earlier improvements:

- A new “Move” option makes it easy to move photos between albums. Just pick a few photos in an album by clicking on the blue V circle (or click the new “Select” link to select all of them) and choose where they go.

- Easier photo downloads. Once you’ve selected photos, use the new “Download” option to save them to your computer. 

- Faster uploading for large sets of photos. We’ve made a few small changes that make adding photos from your desktop an even smoother process.

Google+ Photos tutorial

Hopefully many of your questions will be answered here:  The Photos on Google+ feature is under constant development, I try to keep up with the changes and edit this post accordingly.

Here is a nice post with a .gif showing how to control who sees your albums:

Change a private album to Public or vice versa

Go to your "Photos", click on an album. There you will see under the name how the album has been shared.  You can change the sharing settings also in Picasa for several albums at once:

You can also make changes to multiple album visibilities at once. On the My Photos page, select Edit Visibility located above your albums.

I can share this album via a link but then anyone with the link can see it, better be careful.

If I want to change the settings, I can share the whole album with anyone: Someone with an email, +mention a person or a Page, choose Circles or Public.

Just click on the share box and choose:  Remember to save.
Even if I don't share a post with this album, the people who are allowed to see it, will.

Sharing just one photo in a post as Public even from a private album is possible, then Google+ creates a Public duplicate of the image.

Picasaweb photo albums direct link:  Change visibility for multiple albums.

Moving photos from one album to another

Click open the album. To move just one or few images, click on the black V circle on the photo, it turns blue. To move more, click on "Select". This selects ALL the photos in the album: You must unclick the V mark in each photo you don't want to move or copy.

On the top you see the number of selected photos:  Here 21 selected or all photos in the album.

The easiest way of deselecting images is to click on the drop down arrow next to the 21 selected:
Then untick the blue V circle, photo by photo: It turns black.  You will see the number of selected photos diminish or get smaller.

After you have the selected photos you want with "Select": Click on the grey area above the images and the pop-up box disappears, leaving the selected photos still selected.

Now you can share, copy, move or download those photos, or even delete the selected ones if you want by choosing one function in the blue bar.

Moving or copying the selected photos to a new album or an existing one:

You can type a name in the top or choose one of the existing albums by clicking on the name in the list.
Just save and the move / copying is done. To view the new album among the old ones or make sure the photos have been moved to an existing album, refresh the page.

Photos from posts

You can even move images from your Photos from posts album to a new or existing Public albums without the post or image disappearing.  The original post made with the uploaded photo is also moved with all the +1's and comments, it is visible at the bottom of the album:

If you move an image reshared from an album on Google+, the actual post will not show up like it does with an uploaded photo, but when you click open the image inside the album, all the comments are visible and have migrated with the image.

The album where the photo is moved to must have settings for Public visibility if you wish the post to stay public or it will just show the original post but the image will be grey.  Same with shares to circles or extended circles, the photo album must have the same or wider settings.

Update 7 SEP:
A strange thing happened with an image posted in a Public community:
I shared an image in the Google+ Discuss community as my page +Gplus Helper. Then I decided to move the image to a new album from "Photos from posts". However, the image and post is still visible on the Page's profile but it disappeared from the community view!

Only the page can see the post in the community, for the others it's hidden, even though it says on the post that it's shared in the community. I changed the settings of the new album I created to be Public, but it didn't help.

I shared the post from my personal profile to the Discuss again, but it's only visible to me!

Be very careful when moving photos around!

Organize your photo album

When you select "Organize", you can:

- Change your album's name, top left.
- Set a cover photo by hovering your mouse over the desired photo and click the "Album cover" bottom left: The album view must be set for larger thumbnails like in the screenshot below.
- Change the Order of your photos based on date taken, name, or reverse chronological order, from the arrow top right.
- Upload more photos to the album.
- Use the two buttons top right to change the size of your photo thumbnails.

When you're finished, click the  Done button.
Move or copy photos to another album: Clicking Move lets you move or copy selected photos to one of your other albums or to a new album: This may change the degree of visibility of the photo.

Delete a bunch of photos:
- In Organize view only one-by-one by clicking on the trash can symbol
- In Album view: Click a photo / photos and then choose Delete from the top to delete the selected photos.

Share an album via link

Have an album that you want to share with people outside of Google+? Click the More button and select Share album via link. 
Keep in mind that people who have the direct link to your album may share the link elsewhere. If you want to prevent re-sharing from happening on Google+, check the Disable reshares box.

You can also share from the album view by clicking the Share button in the top right.

The cover photo on Google+

Take note that the whole image is visible on your hovercard:
- If you plan using text, make it large enough to show also there.
It's your 2-second pitch; Make it understandable and clear when people mouse over your name, to get them interested.

Use your imagination with the images! :-)
For the profile avatar: If the image is too large, it gets resized automatically and there is a possibility to crop it further.  Leave some room around your logo or face shot because it gets cropped further for the circular avatar.

Cover photo size: Minimum 480 x 270 pixels, maximum 2120 x 1192 pixels, with 16:9 ratio

About the Lightbox view

The lightbox is where photos are displayed when you click on any individual photo thumbnail. From the lightbox view, you can navigate through the album and take a variety of actions on the photo.

When you click Share in the lightbox view, you create a post for the photo you're looking at. Anyone you share the post with will be able to see and reshare that photo. If you own the album, and you'd like to prevent resharing of your photo, you can disable resharing. People you share the photo with will not be able to see the rest of the album containing that photo, unless the full album has also been shared with them.

In the lightbox you can also:
- tag people
- add comments
- +1 the photo
- view photo details
- edit the image

If you're the owner of the photo, you'll find the following in the More dropdown in the top black bar:
- Add to album
- Set as cover photo
- Download
- Auto enhance
- Highlight

If you'd like to disable the ability for viewers to download photos you own from lightbox:

Place your cursor in the top left corner for the Google+ main menu.
Click Settings.
Scroll down to the Photos section.
Uncheck the box next to Allow viewers to download my photos.

The photos can still be copied by right-clicking or taking a screenshot, so don't post anything in Public that you absolutely don't want spreading anywhere in the Internet.

Add photos to an Event

When you add photos or videos to an event, they are added to a collection shared with all the guests of the event. If you add photos or videos to a public event or event on air, anyone can see these photos and videos. By default, all event guests can contribute to the photo collection of that event. For public events, anyone can contribute photos.

Add photos to an event collection any place you see the Add photos button, marked with a camera image: On an event page, from a notification, or on your phone. 

When you add photos to an existing album that is part of an event collection, those photos will also be added to the event page and shared with the event guests.

Adding a few photos before the Event helps attract more attention.
Read more about enabling the Android Party mode where photos are uploaded automatically to the Event.

Instant upload / Auto backup images and privacy:

I've been asked about the instant upload, will the photos from the phone be publicly viewable...
If the photos are deleted from the phone, what happens then?

- The Google+ photos stay unless you delete them too. If you use Picasa, the images will be visible there also.

- You can always control if something is public or not: If you don't 'share' the pics, they are visible only to you. If you share them to a limited circle or circles, then those people only can see them.

Tagging someone in a photo lets them see the whole album, mind! If you wish to tag someone but not let them see the whole album, just create a new album and copy the photos to be tagged there.

Google+ Photobox

Your most plussed Google+ photos:

This unofficial site was created by a Finn +Jari Huomo and it really portrays well the photographers profiles and pages.

Copy the 21-digit G+ ID number from any Google+ URL and replace it here:

Use Ctrl (Cmd) + or - to control the image sizes.

This link above and the screengrab below is an example of the Google+ Photos CM +Brian Matiash work:

Try this one too, recommended by +Paul Stickland:

This one has the advantage of being able to change the image size by changing the width in the url and seeing a lot more images.

One idea is to use a cropped screenshot like these as your cover image...

Worried about copyright?

Create your own stock photos for social media!

A little bit of imagination and there you have it.
Visit a market place, a beach, a harbour, a park, a supermarket... Place unlikely objects in strange places and shoot.

I took around 100 different pics with the help of this bouquet of roses which cost 4 Euros.
Snow gives a nice lively background. Cropping and editing on Google+ will multiply the amount of usable images two times or more.

Good post from +Peg Fitzpatrick about using photos in blogs and social media: It may cost you...

Any tips of your own to add?


Picasaweb albums direct link

Latest Picasa update DEC 2013

Great in-depth article on Google+ for photographers by +The Next Web

Video playlist about the new Chrome photo editor on Google+

Google+ Help pages: Photos  and Editing

Google+ photography Communities

Go to your Photos tab and click on the search bar:
You can see all the different search filters you can use.

Is there something else you'd like to know about Google+ photos?