Snapseed app for smartphones

This is Part three of my series looking at the mobile creative, you can find Part 1 and Part 2 linked. Today I want to explain why Snapseed is my current go-to app for processing pictures on my smartphone.

N and G
Two separate photos of my grandparents processed in Snapseed, made into a collage on Pixlr.

For a while, Snapseed was an iOS only application and, as an Android user, not available to me. This changed back in December 2012 and for the past year or so I’ve been using Snapseed almost exclusively. Here’s why;

  • Easy to use interface
  • Ability to see the impact of changes ‘before and after’ prior to implementing them
  • Possibility to go back to historical versions of the file
  • Ability to control shadows, mid-tones and highlights separately
  • Easy rotation for images that aren’t quite straight
  • Some nice filters for adding effects such as HDR, Black and White, Film Grain, Retro, Vintage etc. and the ability to adjust the intensity of those filters for greater creative control.


My workflow for processing in Snapseed is as follows;

  • Take the shot with the phone camera
  • Open in Snapseed
  • Start with ‘Tune Image’ and adjust the basics of brightness, contrast, saturation, ambiance, shadows, highlights and warmth.
  • Go to ‘Details’ to sharpen
  • Rotate if necessary – as well as the standard 90deg rotations, sliding left and right on the image makes fine tuning adjustments and the overlay grid that comes up is very helpful
  • Crop – set the ratio you want and draw in the crop
  • Add filters if necessary


The one thing that’s missing for me is the ability to re-size the image. I always want a full sized image for keeping in my portfolio but I only need a moderately sized image for posting on-line. At the moment, Snapseed only allows saving in max size. This is overcome with an app called ‘Reduce Photo Size’ which I use to reduce most of my photos before they are posted to social media.

Tuc Tuc

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