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April 9, 2013

7 Best Free Alternatives to Adobe Photoshop for Easier Photo Editing

April 9, 2013 | By | 35 Comments">35 Comments

Photo Editing for Campaigns

Adobe Photoshop is probably the most advanced and widely used photo editing tool with so many features you may not find in other photo editing software programs.

Although this feature-rich software is greatly appreciated by professional graphic artists, it may be rather too complicated for someone who isn’t much conversant with the ‘complex’ user interface.

I do use Photoshop now but at the beginning, it was sort of hard and I had to look for alternatives. There are lots of other photo editing software programs but to the best of my knowledge, none of the free ones can be compared to Adobe Photoshop.

With or without Photoshop, I can create logos, edit my photos and do some other little stuffs but when it comes to applying certain effects, you may still have to go back to Photoshop. The alternatives below won’t do everything Photoshop does, but they can be quite useful if you do not want to go through the trouble of trying to get used to Photoshop or even buying it at all.

1. Paint.NET

best free photo editing software

I started using this software a couple of years ago when I was trying to create a logo for my first blog. Paint.NET looks simple but actually loaded with lots of features found in Photoshop. It’s an open source software with many plugins that can improve it’s functionality. As a matter of fact, you can even edit a .psd file with this software, re-touch your photos and do much more. It’s a pretty good alternative to Adobe Photoshop for a casual graphic artist / logo designer.

2. GIMP

best free photo editing software

This is another open source image editing tool anyone would love. It’s a bit more advanced than Paint.NET with certain features you won’t find in other free graphic editing tools. GIMP is quite heavy and the first time I ran it, it took a while to start up unlike Paint.NET that’s much lighter. I prefer GIMP though and I’ve been using it more and more lately to create some cool logos and other graphic designs.

3. Pixlr Editor

best free photo editing software

I started using this on my iPhone and if all you care about is a nice looking picture with some professional looking touches you can easily apply, you’re gonna love the web based version of this app. Of course, it’s free but it’s a web based app that should come in handy when you’re thinking of re-touching your pictures on Facebook, Google+ and other social networks

4. Adobe Photoshop Express

best free photo editing software

Just like Pixlr Editor, Adobe Photoshop Express is another free web based tool that lets edit your pictures online without the need to download any software.

5. GimpShop

best free photo editing software

If you’ve used GIMP, you’ll definitely love GimpsShop as it is built based on Gimp but with the classy look and feel of Adobe Photoshop. It’s a great alternative to Adobe Photoshop.

6. PhotoFiltre

best free photo editing software

PhotoFiltre allows you to edit your photos easily and add filters to make them look better without knowing much about graphic editing. It’s quite easy to use and the user interface is easy to understand.

7. PhotoPlus

best free photo editing software

Editing your photos is made easy with PhotoPlus (starter edition). If all you want it just to adjust contrast and brightness, whiten teeth, make your skin smooth, remove certain objects from pictures and apply certain effects to your photos, PhotoPlus is just waht you need.

What’s your favorite photo editing tool to use for quick edits? Let us know in the comments below!

Meet 

About the Author >> Don Caprio is a full time blogger / web designer living in Nigeria and apart from blogging, my other obsession is music. I'm a self-confessed Tupac fan, an iOS lover, an Android user, a Windows 8 power user, a writer with a 5-year old unfinished novel... and the list goes on and on. You can add me on Facebook, follow my updates on Twitter or add me to your circles on Google+!

  • http://www.web101marketing.com/ Tom Parker – Web101 Marketing

    I’ve used GIMP a good bit, and I would say that it’s the closest thing to Photoshop that you’re going to find. There is a definitely a learning curve, but there are tons of tutorials on the net. I’ve used Pixlr too, and it’s very powerful for a web based app. Pixlr has a selection of ‘levels’ that you can choose. I’d recommend for someone inexperienced in graphics, to see if you can accomplish what you want to do in Pixlr first, and if not, move on to Gimp.

  • http://thesecrettomakingmoney.com Steve Schellert

    I am looking at FREE logos site and I am going to give it a try. Thanks for your great tips and alternatives to Adobe Photoshop.

  • http://thinkupnewmedia.com Mike Macey

    I use Pixlr and Gimp. My go to for overall re-sizing, full image management (viewing) is Fast Stone Image Viewer [http://faststone.org]. Thanks for sharing some editors I have not used Alex.

  • http://www.bestphotoscanning.com Tim

    For quick, simple editing, I use Paint.net. It’s deceptively simple, but lots of useful tools, and no bugs that I’ve found. A big step up from the plain vanilla Paint program that comes with Windows.

    Otherwise, I use Corel Photo Paint for more specialized treatments. Mostly because I’m used to it, and can’t really afford Photoshop, or the learning curve.

  • ginb

    I use photoshop for nearly everything but if you’re not a graphic designer and if you’re only looking for something simple try http://www.otshot.net or picasa

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  • http://sandraharriette.com Sandra Harriette

    Since Windows 7, Paint has changed a lot. It doesn’t surprise me that some people can create logos with it.

    I once watched this video of a screen cap of someone painting the Mona Lisa using that program. Gimp is pretty popular too and I have seen some amazing artwork created with that one. Reshade is good for someone who needs an online image resizer for quick edits. One can even edit high res photos too. It’s neat.

    Thanks for sharing!

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  • Judy

    I need a free program so that I can edit pictures – move objects from one place to another – select a range of colors and one that the drawing tool is easy to manage. What would you suggest.

  • http://editphotosforfree.com Anna

    I like pixlr which is very much similar to photoshop and easier to use for photoshop users. I use it when photoshop is not available. I am also very fan of HTML5 so I create editphotosforfree.com which is photo editor and collager maker tool. It is different from all the above online software.

  • ishan

    Snapstouch is free online tool to convert photo to sketch, photo to painting, photo to drawing, photo to outline, photo to B&W etc. This tool adds theses effect with maintaining actual size and that is totally free of cost even you don’t need to create account to add the effects.
    http://www.snapstouch.com

  • http://sceua.com allen

    pixel degrees is better then all of them… speakin based on personal experience.

  • Katelyn

    Very helpful to a new blogger. Thanks!

    http://www.katelynnow.com

    • http://heyo.com/ Alex Shamy

      Thanks Katelyn – website looks great! – Alex

    • Wes

      Glad you found the content useful Katelyn :)

  • joe

    Quick Pix Flex View dynamic image viewer for Windows gets it done with fewer strokes

  • http://clippingpath.in/ Glamour Retouching

    7 Best Free Alternatives to Adobe Photoshop for Easier Photo Editingare stunning and plenty incredible.

  • Steve_s100

    Paint.net is my favorite from all the listed, gimp is very powerful but not user friendly at all..

    Your list is lake two of my favorites photo editor – Photo Pos Pro (http://www.photopos.com) and Photo Scape (http://www.photoscape.org)

    • http://heyo.com/ Alex Shamy

      Agreed, Steve – not the biggest fan of GIMP! Pixlr is the way to go! – Alex

  • http://www.clippingpathspecialist.com/photograph-retouching.html Shumicps

    I like to use GIMP as an alternative to photoshop.

    • Wes

      I prefer Pixlr myself Suzan but here GIMP is great!

  • Sam Hovdes

    what is the best alternative for Adobe cs6? I am helping my friend make her portfolio and she needed some suggestions

    • http://heyo.com/ Alex Shamy

      Sam – I personally recommend Pixlr for graphics, but there are certainly limitations. I would check out GIMP as an alternative.

      • Sam Hovdes

        Ok thanks so much. Do you know how to apply PSD’s on either of those apps?

  • Ruby

    Photofiltre is reaaally really nice in my opinion. Similar to Photoshop, but very easy to understand.

    • Wes

      Thanks for the share Ruby!

  • Khizar Khan

    I like to use GIMP as an alternative to photoshop.

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  • http://www.clippingpathspecialist.com/clipping-path/ Atiqur Sumon

    I personally recommend Gimp Shop

  • Kaye T.

    Hi! I just want to know if you’ve tried picmonkey and if you have any thoughts on it. I’ve been using it on my blog and think it’s alright although I’m thinking of trying out others, esp the ones on your post. Thanks for this!

  • Ben

    PicsArt!

  • Alexis Bianca Gault

    I am trying to replace iPhoto, the only thing I really miss from my Mac. It has a simple slider with a, “sharpen,” option that works miracles. Is it really so hard to figure out that this is a GREAT feature? I still haven’t figured out the steps involved in doing the same thing in PS. So far, I’ve just succeeded in making my photos more grainy! Thanks for these leads, I’ll start looking for my favorite button.

  • http://www.enrichedexperiences.com/ Pam Bagley

    Which one should I use to create a huge 4′ x 8′ – photo that will be professionally printed. I will use approx. 50 photos and some text. I’d like to create “frames” for my photos inside the huge finished photo. It needs to be flexible to navigate. Thanks

  • https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/followlife/id757770190?mt=8 followlife

    Thanks for filtering the Best photo editors among thousands..
    I am using followlife – An amazing ios app for photo editing & Sharing