Snapseed Review

Snapseed – A One-Stop Photo Editing App

Snapseed is a one-stop photo-editing app that truly delivers. Whether you’re a professional photographer, aspiring artist, or outright beginner, its simple approach to enhancing images makes it easy to make your images look great.

For this review of Snapseed, we’ll use a single photo, which I took while my family was on vacation in San Simeon:

Snapseed photo - unedited

Snapseed and Me

I’m a long way off from being a professional photographer, but I know some of the basics of composition and color. If you need some help taking better pictures, I recommend checking out the Digital Photography School blog, especially this, this, and definitely this. Once you have some of those basics, enhancing your pictures will seem less like guesswork and more like careful planning on your part.

My favorite thing about Snapseed is how easy it is to see what changes you are making. The “Compare” button gets a lot of use when I’m in the App, and I’ve changed my mind on edits more than a few times before settling on just the right combination of effects. For example, here is the above picture run through the Drama filter:

Snapseed Photo - Drama Filter

I like this filter on this picture a lot because it really amps up the . . . well . . . drama. It did kind of kill the nice contrast of the ocean-reflected sunlight. But, in return, it lit up the ocean and made the picture itself a little clearer. There’s no question you’re looking at the sun setting on the ocean rather than, say, a nuclear explosion on a small island in the distance.

Let’s run this pic through a few more filters, by themselves. Here’s the Center Focus filter:

Snapseed Photo - Center Focus Filter

This filter allows you to add a nice blur to the edges of your picture. It also allows you to adjust the brightness of the center and edges separately. This can bring more attention to your central subject, and also amp up the drama a bit. You also have control over the brightness and blur level of the center and edge, respectively. This can help you amp up the focus onto your subject or even out the mood of your photo.

Snapseed’s Interface

Snapseed Interface

Snapseed’s controls are very clearly designed for a touch interface. Its intuitive interface works great on my iPad. It’s a pleasure to edit photos with it because it makes photo editing easy for “the rest of us.” A “Compare” button makes it easy to see what your filter looks like next to the original. This can make it easy to decide whether to commit to a filter or revert back to the original photo.

Here’s a view of my photo through the Retrolux filter:

Snapseed Photo - Retrolux filter

Retrolux is an especially rich Snapseed filter with dozens of options for giving your photos a quick and easy retro look. This could be a great filter for digital artists as well as photographers. It can add mood to otherwise generic artwork. It makes pictures come out looking like something from the game “Myst” or the TV Show “Lost.”

Snapseed gets my highest recommendation as a photo editing App. It helps give my pictures a little bump of mood and atmosphere with as much nuance as I want. If you’re into taking pictures with your iPad and want to give them a little extra touch-up (or a lot), it is probably the app you’re looking for.

Five Stars - Awesome!

Get Snapseed in the App Store – Free

All of my reviews are done on the 4th Generation iPad that is about five months old. I can’t vouch for the functionality of something on an iPhone, an iPad Mini, an iPod Touch, older generation iPad, or a steam-powered spaceship. If you agree or disagree with any particular rating, please feel free to leave a well-reasoned comment, or send me an email: editor[at] .


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *