7 Free Web Alternatives to Photoshop
Photo by youngdesign, Creative Commons
Hamsa Ramesha | Inside Tech
May 03, 2010
Tired of going through trial versions of Adobe Photoshop? Frustrated by the limitations of common accessory programs like Paint? You’re not alone.
Adobe Photoshop may be the holy grail of photo editing software, but that doesn’t mean you’ve got to break the bank to produce high-quality photos! The Internet has spawned some amazing open source photo editing programs that’ll get the job done, and then some.
Best of all? Put away your wallet; you won’t have to pay a dime!
Check out these free substitutes to Photoshop available online for both Mac and PC users. Just remember — free doesn’t equal perfection. Bugs, downtime, and editing limitations are inevitable. After all, there’s nothing exactly like the real deal.
1. GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program)
Definitely considered one of the most popular Photoshop alternatives, GIMP is cross-platform, with a large community of support. Customize your editing interface and get nearly all the advanced photo editing techniques of Photoshop. GIMP is Free Software and part of the GNU Project, with development and improvements ongoing. Still miss Photoshop? Check out GIMPShop, for a look and feel that is as close to Photoshop as you can get, but still free! All bang, no buck.
This photo editing program is gaining popularity because of how easy it is to manipulate photo effects normally used by advanced photographers. In addition to cropping, resizing, and red-eye removal functions, you can animate, distort, extract, smooth, and pick apart your photo any way you want! Swap a celebrity’s face with your own, recolor your hair, or cartoon-ify your image right away. Edit in multiple layers as you import photos from various photo sharing sites.
Pixlr offers a suite of photo editing services. In Pixlr Editor, retouch digital images with basic and advanced tools. Out of time? Pixlr Express has quick and easy editing options if you’re in a rush; make sure to download Flash for both programs. For a faster editing experience, install Pixlr Grabber into your Firefox or Chrome browser, or onto your desktop (Windows only). This program allows you to click on images and open them up in Pixlr Editor immediately.