Although Adobe Photoshop is still the gold standard for image creation and editing, it has two barriers that make it an unattractive option for many users: cost and difficulty to use with its many advanced features. If you are a startup, college student, or blogger and often create images, these five tools are great free alternatives to Photoshop. Discover Gimp, Paint.NET, Pixlr, Canva, Photopea…
Photoshop is the best software for those who need to use many advanced features to create professional photos. However, GIMP has just about everything Leviathan can do for photo editing. It’s first and foremost free and open source, to easily create epic thumbnails and high-quality logos.
It’s also beginner friendly and has a great community that shares tips and tricks to help you succeed with your visuals. GIMP offers tons of tools and resources to take any photo and add your professional touch, whether you’re a web designer, graphic designer, hobbyist photographer, or blogger for example.
Moreover, it can still open and edit PSD files even if it has its own file type (XCF). It’s also relatively small, which is a great choice for computers with low power or low storage space.
Paint.NET is another free photo and image editing program available for download for Windows users. For Mac OS and Linux users, you’ll want to consider an alternative like GIMP instead. The program was originally developed as a large student project as a free alternative to Microsoft Paint. Since then, the software has been maintained and developed by Rick Brewster, with additional features such as layers, special effects, etc.
Much simpler than Photoshop, the interface is clean, simple and easy to use for selecting, creating and editing digital photos. Instead, it sticks to the basics, which makes it more intuitive unlike Photoshop. However, if you want to create complex images, Paint.NET has the ability to do what you need, if you tweak it a bit.
One of its big advantages is that most tools let you see what you’re doing while you’re doing it, like the gradient tool and the line/curve tool for example. In Photoshop, the gradient tools do not draw gradients directly, but contain a thin line representing the location of the gradient. When you release the mouse button, a gradient is drawn, which sometimes forces you to do the process and repeat the process several times until you get the desired gradient, which is not the case in Paint. NET.
Pixlr is a browser-based image editing program that is available completely free of charge. It has ready-to-use photo-editing presets for beautiful images that mimic hand-drawn pencil illustrations, watercolors, blurs, and more. In a few clicks.
It is designed for editing and creating photos/images, and it has several key features: collage, cloud image storage with just a few clicks, social media posting software…
Sure, Pixlr doesn’t have all the features of Adobe products, but it can offer more advanced editing options than the original photo editing apps for Windows or Mac. Moreover, it is available on Mac, Windows or Linux using Safari, Edge, Firefox or Chrome. If you are using iOS or Android mobile phone, you can download the native apps. It does not take up much space and memory.
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Canva is an online content creation platform with a focus on design. It’s basically a type of online Photoshop (not for editing, but for design in particular), ideal for individual creators and small businesses who may not have design skills.
Canva is one of the main tools and resources for creating images for social media, and almost any type of visual element, from presentations to business cards to posters, thanks to its pre-made templates. Very practical, it automatically saves all your designs. So there is no need to save them to a drive or be limited to using a specific computer.
Photopea is a unique editing app with an interface and list of features very similar to Photoshop. Although it does not have all the features of the main Adobe editor, Photopea is not a lightweight editor either. It has enough power and features to save many users from the hassle of purchasing photo editing software. It’s free and open source, with some ads helping support its development, but it’s not intrusive.
In Photopea, you can make general adjustments such as adjusting the brightness of the image, as well as more specific adjustments such as selecting an image from the background. It works with raster data (images made up of an array of pixels) and vectors and supports many file formats.
What’s impressive is that it’s all in your browser. Photopea does not require a download. You can either use it in a normal browser interface or “install” it as an app through browsers like Google Chrome or the Chromium-supported version of Microsoft Edge. But even when it’s “installed”, you don’t have to download anything. The application is in your browser, and the editing is done on your computer. All your work is stored locally, so nothing is placed on the server or the cloud.