Photography tools

Five online tools and apps to manage your photos

Photography already occupies an irreplaceable place in the world of mobile telephony (it is estimated that Google Photos alone stores 136,000 million snapshots) and it is extremely easy to take your mobile out of your pocket and immortalize any what a moment. However, the life of a photograph does not end there: once taken, it goes to mobile storage and from there, possibly in an automated way, to one of the services that we have contracted in the cloud.

The shooting process usually follows this route:

  • Take the photo from the phone (only 7% of photos are taken from dedicated cameras).
  • They are stored on the mobile and from there, if there is a cloud service, they are synchronized.
  • The user can then modify them to eliminate duplicates or apply algorithms that improve the result of the photo.

This last step is decisive so as not to end up with an uncontrollable amount of photographs including memes, screenshots, accidental photos… hygiene of the photo library is decisive so that the memories can be consulted later without going crazy. How to organize the image gallery? We are going to review some tools with high added value.

GFPGAN, bringing old photos back to life

Anyone who keeps an old black and white photograph, already eaten away by humidity or discolored, should know that a new algorithm restores them completely free and open source. A group of Tencent researchers has created an algorithm called GFPGAN (Generative Facial Prior-Generative Adversarial Network, for its acronym in English) that “revives” old photos with surprising efficiency. This system uses artificial intelligence to fill in damaged parts with startling realism, although, yes, it can alter the content a bit in some cases.

Unlike other solutions that offer similar results, GFPGAN maintains image quality and resolution, and is available for anyone to try at this link. The user is invited to upload an old photo – the results will be more visible the more deteriorated the image – and after a few seconds the system will restore the photo retouched by the algorithm in high quality conditions.

LunaPic, or how to remove the background from photos

A shot can be perfect in all its registers: lighting, focus, saturation… however, it can happen that when taking it a person passes from behind or simply, the environment darkens the photo. Can it be fixed? In the cloud and completely free, we find the powerful LunaPic tool, which among its many functions has the powerful “Background Removal Tool”, which eliminates, with great precision, the background of the photo, leaving the outline visible. It should be noted that the result will be better when the foreground is in sharp focus. RemoveBg performs these functions as well.

FixThePhoto, for those who want professional results in photography

So far we have listed totally free solutions accessible to all budgets, but it may happen that at some point we need a professional service for an accurate photo, and that’s where FixThePhoto comes in. This paid service combines algorithms with the intervention of professionals to retouch and transform any type of photograph; Among his services are the removal of wrinkles, disheveled hair, the restoration of old photographs, the alteration of clothes that appear wrinkled in the photo. Naturally, they charge for each retouched photo, and their clients range from people who want to look good in professional forums (LinkedIn profiles or company photos), to companies who want a touch of quality in the products they sell.

Use an independent professional service

All of the solutions offered above can be helpful in the process of retouching and enhancing photographs, but, on occasion, it may be worth contacting a professional personally to do the job. On platforms such as Workana or Fiverr, the client has access to a multitude of professionals who charge for the work carried out according to their difficulty and experience. The principle is the same as in the previous solutions, except that this time the relationship is permanent with a professional: the contact is made via the platform, the work is presented and after validation of the budget, it is delivered within the time limit. . These last two payment options are more for professionals or those who want custom work.

Google Photos, storage and editing

Google’s popular cloud tool and the destination for most photos among Android users, offers a powerful editor that allows us to edit photos at will. The first thing to know is that this service benefits from the full power of Google’s algorithm. What do we mean by that? That a bot analyzes each photograph and in this scan identifies if they can be improved in terms of lighting, if it is taken vertically being landscape… The good news is that this algorithm will automatically suggest improvements to the image and if the user validates them, he will apply them instantly.

The less good news is that this bot can misidentify legitimate content as illegal and lock the user’s account, although such cases are anecdotal. In any case, in each photo the user will find a square-shaped button with two stars inside that gives them access to a series of filters with which they can personalize the photo. Among them, the “auto” will automatically improve the lighting and saturation conditions of the shot.

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