How to edit mobile photos with Snapseed: Tutorial

Today I am going to teach you how to edit your photos with Snapseed. Because as much as one gets the best possible photos with the smartphone (in this mega guide we tell you how to get it), sometimes we don’t get where we want.

Although many people think that a photo is taken on the camera, period, life is full of nuances and this includes taking photos with the mobile camera and editing as we please.

Because that’s what the tools are for and that’s what art is for, to write it down and capture it as you want.

Whether it’s because of the tool, the situation, or our own limitations as photographers (don’t beat yourself up, we’re learning 😜), sometimes our photo is far from what we have in mind.

Luckily we have wonderful editors that can fix crooked photos, poor lighting, uninteresting framing, etc.

Do you want to learn some tricks to turn a mediocre or near-disaster photo into a salvageable or even impressive photo? Well, stay because this article interests you.

  1. mobile editing apps
  2. How to edit your mobile photos with Snapseed?
  3. Default Snapseed Layouts
  4. Other Snapseed Tools
  5. Edit RAW photos with mobile from Snapseed?
  6. How to export your photos with Snapseed?
  7. How to get Snapseed

mobile editing apps

There are many photography applications, today we are going to talk about Snapseed, but in the link you will find a specific section of applications to edit your photos with your mobile.

If you want us to write a more specific article about the different editing applications where we expand the information of each of them, leave us a comment, you know that we like to create material that is of interest to you.

Me, the applications to edit with the mobile that I use the most are Snapseed and VSCO (both free). The first one, which is the one we are going to talk about today, seems very complete and very easy to use.

The second one also offers a lot of tools and filters that are very good for instagramming. If you like this tutorial and want another one for VSCO, just ask πŸ˜‰ .

But this application thing is like the same edition, it goes to taste, my advice is to try them all (or several) and keep the one that is most comfortable for you and offers you the tools you need.

How to edit your mobile photos with Snapseed?

I am going to give you several examples, since there is no fixed formula or magic recipe to edit your mobile photos with Snapseed, but rather each photograph requires different touch-ups and each person would edit in a different way.

Today’s are some examples of edition, which does not mean that it is a correct edition, but the one that I like. It should serve as a guide to understand the tools and (more or less) the steps when editing a photo with your mobile.

From there, the decisions are made by you based on the photo and what you want to have with it.

Original photograph taken with the mobile

Steps to edit a mobile photo with Snapseed

I am going to tell you basically the steps that I would follow with Snapseed. Although, as I was saying, it will depend on the photo.

Let’s see an example that requires almost all the tools that I usually use.

On the right the original photo, a photograph taken hastily, without time to frame, expose, or anything.

My daughter ran to take the typical photo (posada) with the cabin and I found this moment more interesting and spontaneous. As you can see, the image leaves a lot to be desired.

1. Select the photo

The first thing, once you have Snapseed open, is to open the image you want to edit by clicking on OPEN in the upper left corner and select it from your gallery.

In the following image you can see the open photo and the tools you have. At the bottom of the application you have a menu with Filters, Tools Y Export. Click on Tools and they will all be shown (you have to go down to be able to see them until the end, that’s why I put them in two screenshots).

2. Straighten (and crop)


The trim step can be done after straightening or at the end of the entire edit.

If I know what aspect ratio I’m going to go for and I don’t have to straighten, I like to do it first so I have the image as it will be so I know what to do.

If you want to make several cuts, for different types of publication or printing, better leave it for the end.

For example, imagine you want to print the photo at 10Γ—15 size (2:3 ratio) but you also want to upload it to Instagram (where the aspect ratio would be 4:5); In this case, it is better to edit the photograph and once it is ready, make the different cuts, saving the different versions.

As for straightening the photo, the tool Perspective is the one that surprises me the most about Snapseed, really.

correct perspective

Once you open it, it offers you several options: Tilt (vertical or horizontal), To turn (to straighten the horizon), Climb Y Free.

When there is a building it is perfect and super easy to use to straighten all the lines. Like in this case.

as with Tilt did not solve so much distortion, I have chosen to select the option of Free. You are pulling the corners until you leave all the lines (vertical and horizontal) straight.

You know, each photo will ask you for a different thing. Be careful with the borders that can leave the gaps in white, black or fill them automatically (depending on the option you have checked).

That’s why I recommend you always do the trimming after straightening.

3. Make basic settings

It’s time to adjust the exposure, from enhance photo, if it’s too dark you can brighten it (to the right) or lighten the shadows (to the left). If it is too exposed, you can lower the exposure with the brightness and with the highlights (be careful, with the burned areas it does not work miracles).

Here you can also adjust the Contrast to accentuate certain elements and the Saturation to enhance colors or tone them down.

If you control the editing of curves, you also have it in Snapseed (right image). We will talk about them again below.

As you can see, the photograph changes a lot with this step. They are the minimum adjustments that you should make to all your photos, without it being too artificial, of course.

Photo Enhance Tool for basic adjustments Curves Tool

4. White balance

With white balance you control the color temperature of the image. Normally, white is white and does not tend to any color, but a cold or warm temperature also helps to transmit sensations and is something you can play with.

I tend to like warm photos more, but as I was saying, each image and each scene requires a temperature.

With the tool that has the icon A.W. corrects itself automatically (doesn’t always work). With the selector that I mark in the first image below (click to enlarge), you can select an area of ​​the scene that is white and correct it automatically (second capture). If you move it around the image you can also keep the temperature that suits you best for your photo.

Finally, we have the Temperature tool (screenshot 3), with the cursor to the right it becomes warm and to the left it becomes colder (see examples below).

You can also play around with the Tone which is the Hue in Lightroom. To the right it pulls magenta and to the left green. It can help you correct skin tones. In this case I leave it as it is.

White balance with white picker White picker Temperature tool Warm temperature Cool temperature

5. Correction of elements

Stain Remover Tool

Sometimes unwanted elements sneak into the image, which do not contribute anything. When it is a street or documentary photography, it is not ethical to remove them, for everything else, you are free to do what you want with your photo to make it look better.

The glass on top of the wall bothered me and I removed it with the tool Stain remover.

If it is something very small, it is better that you enlarge the image well. You just have to tap on the element to remove and Snapseed does magic.

Sometimes you don’t get it the first time or the second (or the third…), but do tests until you have a natural result.

Undo and do as many times as necessary, have a little patience πŸ˜‰ The more edges there are around the element, the more it costs.

If we get thin, it could also eliminate what is on the ground, but as an example we can use the glass.

The glass has “disappeared”

With this last tweak it works for me. If I hadn’t cut I would do it now and that’s it. This is how this quick edition turned out for me.

edited photography

Let’s now see the comparison of the original photo (left) and the edited photo (right). Change, right? Well, you can do this yourself, it’s free and easy.

Original photo taken with the mobile Photo edited with Snapseed

Undo changes in Snapseed

And what happens if you’re wrong? If the edition you are doing does not convince you and you want to go back, it is very easy. You have several options:

  • Recover the original: you undo all the changes at once and return to the origin.
  • See editions: All the adjustments (or layers) that you have made are opened (central image). If you click on one of them, three options are displayed (right image), Paper bin, to remove that particular edition; the Brushto apply it only to one area, Editto re-adjust the tweaks for that edit or layer.

Options to undo changes Edits by stacks or layers Options by edition

If at this point you have doubts about whether or not to edit your photos, don’t be fooled, that the photos you see are not taken directly from the camera, 99.9% are edited or retouched.

And it is that the cameras have their limitations, no matter how good they are. But that’s what editing tools are for. To compensate and to express exactly what we want.

Let’s see some other example quickly.

Because, I insist, each image requires adjustments beyond the basic ones: Tonal contrast, Vignetting, Black and white or Blur, are just some of the tools that Snapseed offers and that I have not used in the example above.

Edit mobile photo with Snapseed in Black and white

Let’s go now with a black and white image. I’m going to put each of the steps I’ve been taking. I turn it around because I like that dreamlike effect, where the unreal is the real and vice versa. The edition has no limits, only those that your imagination has.

Original from the mobile camera Tonal contrast to highlight elements Black and white Contrast in Black and white tool Basic adjustments in Enhance Photo Straighten horizon Flip image Remove boat with stain remover Vignetting to give protanism Final image

Now let’s see the comparison of the original and the final. Can…