How to add focal zoom to photos on Windows XP, Vista, 7, and 8 [Guide]

Focal zoom is an image editing option that zooms everything around a central area. The central area of the photo remains in focus, whilst the option adds blurring to the rest of the surrounding picture. This is a great editing option that can add more impact to some of your photographs.

To edit your photos with focal zoom, add Google Picasa 3.9 to your software library (aka download it). This includes focal zoom among other image editing options. The software is supported by Windows XP, Vista, 7, and 8.

From the Google Picasa window find a suitable folder by scrolling through the thumbnail previews of your pictures. You should select a photo that has a clear central point to add blur around. For example, below is my own flower photo. The center of the flower will be the central point, that remains in focus, for the focal zoom. For further examples of photos that include the editing, input focal zoom into Google and then click Images.

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To open the Google Picasa image editor select a suitable photo thumbnail. Then select the blue paintbrush tab, and click on the Focal Zoom option. That will edit the photo, and open additional focal zoom editing options as in the shot below.

Google Picasa

Firstly, you should position the cross to the central point of the photo. That should then put the center into greater focus, and the rest of the surrounding photo out of focus. Note the Zoominess bar which will add more surrounding blur when dragged to the right. Drag the Zoominess bar a little further to the right of center to give more impact.

The Focal Size bar will increase or reduce the area of the central point that remains in focus. Resize the circle so that all of your central point is in focus. In my flower photo the central point includes all the black center.

Another notable option is that of the Fade bar. Dragging the bar to the far right puts the rest of the image in focus. However, as the rest of the photo that surrounds the central point should be out of focus drag this bar a little further to the left of center.

Once done click on Apply to edit the photograph. Then you should have something comparable to the picture below. Clicking Undo Focal Zoom removes the editing. To save the photograph select File and then Save.

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Conclusion

Focal zoom is one of my favorite image editing options. It’s great for photos that include moving objects, and for adding greater impact and dynamism to more static shots which have clear central points.

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