How to Remove a Flash Shadow With Picasa

By Ken White

Photography in less-than-optimal lighting conditions leaves you with a choice between using only the existing light, which can result in dark and muddy photos, or using a flash, which can result in a noticeable flash shadow. Before digital photography and photo-editing software, photo touch-ups involved a difficult process, but editing programs like Google’s free Picasa 3 let you adjust color and contrast, crop and retouch, and fine-tune your pictures to remove flash shadows.

Step 1

Open Picasa 3. Scroll to the folder containing your photo in the Library window. Double-click the photo to open it.

Step 2

Click the “Tuning” tab. Click the “Highlights” slider and drag to the right to brighten the lighter areas of your photo. As the lighter areas expand, the flash shadow is removed.

Step 3

Click the “Basic Fixes” tab. Click “Auto Contrast” and “Auto Color” to normalize the brightness from the “Highlights” tool. You can also use the “Fill Light” slider to brighten the picture.

Step 4

Click “File,” and then “Save As” to save the edited picture. Type a name for the picture in the “File Name” text box and click “Save.”

Tips & Warnings

  • You can also click “Edit in Picnik” in the “Basic Fixes” tab to upload the file to Google’s Picnik online photo-editing application. Picnik has additional editing tools including the ability to sharpen your photo and make it more clear, which can improve photos processed in Picasa.
  • The Retouch tool in the “Basic Fixes” tab can also be used to touch up any remaining shadow artifacts in the photo.