What is Auto Awesome?

There are a lot of separate parts to Google+ as a whole, which can be daunting for a new user. This series of articles will clear up the confusion in small bite sized chunks.

Auto Awesome is…

…the name given to a feature of Google+ that creates new and interesting pictures from the images you upload. It is not to be confused with Auto Enhance, which applies filters to existing images.

How does it work?

Google does all of the work for you in most cases, meaning all you have to do is take photos and upload them.

There are several ways in which Auto Awesome can create new images. They are…

Eraser

Everyone has been there and done that. You try to take a photo and someone walks by ruining the shot. Eraser deals with that, by looking at 3 or more images and removing the moving elements.

Action

This turns a series of images into one great action shot, with moving elements overlaid on top of each other.

Pano

Stitches together multiple overlapping images to create one big panoramic view.

Here is one created from some images of the Loxwood Joust which I photographed earlier this year. Notice there is more than one Black Knight!

A panoramic Auto Awesome moment

HDR

When taking a photo, the exposure affects how much light enters the lens. Professional photographers often take the same shot three separate times, with high, medium and low exposures. Then using complicated software, they combine the images for a final composite with a much greater colour range.

Google+ does all the leg work for you. All it needs are three similar photos, with high, medium and low exposures.

Now, I cheated and used the Android App Snapseed (available at Google Play) to create an example of an HDR image, as Google+ has yet to create one for me! Have a look at these before and after shots of Corfe Castle in Dorset.

Motion

This is a fun one to see. If you take five or more photos of the same subject, Google+ creates an animated gif.

Smile

If you have ever tried taking a photo of a group of people, you will know how difficult it is to get them smiling at the right time. Someone may be looking the wrong way, someone else may be pulling a silly face, or perhaps there is just a fidget who looks blurry in most of the shots. Auto Awesome can pick out the best smiles from a group of photos and create one final composite where everyone is at their best!

Mix

If you have several portrait pictures with the same background, Google+ will arrange them on a grid for you.

Now, I was going to use a Halloween Auto Awesome to demonstrate for you, but this one is much more appealing.

An Auto Awesome mixIf you do want can stomach seeing the Halloween mix, then you can view it here in all it’s gory.

Auto Awesome for films

If you are lucky enough to own a device running Android 4.3 or later, then the Google Photos app also gives you the ability to create Auto Awesome films too. You can mix video and still images, together with various sound tracks and effects. Just pick the moments you want included and Google+ sticks it all together for you.

That’s enough for now. If you have any questions, please ask in the comments below. Also, if you have some Auto Awesome moments you want to share, please do!

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