For many, the Adobe Photoshop Creative Suite provides everything one needs for photo editing and manipulation; it is user friendly, highly customizable and highly versatile. However, it’s incredibly expensive. Some users may even have problems with its interface or its overall compatibility. Regardless of your reasons, there are plenty of other programs to consider that are a safe, affordable and a simple alternative to Photoshop. Many are open source, which will save you a bundle. Here are the top five Photoshop alternatives.
1. GIMP (GNU image manipulation program): When it comes to getting the most out of a photo editing software, GIMP has all the features you need to create a variety of stunning effects. If you miss Photoshop’s unique structure, another similar alternative includes GIMPShop, which is a form of GIMP that is quite similar to Photoshop. In terms of navigation, it has almost identical tools featured in Photoshop and allows them to be accessed with ease. Not only is it compatible with a variety of operating systems, but best of all, it is an open source program; which means it can be download for absolutely free.
2. Paint.NET Paint.NET: This is a Windows-based photo editor that is perfect for users who want something simple to work with. Out of all of the Photoshop alternatives in this article, this is quite possibly the most basic. Just because it does not have the same bells and whistles as the more ornate programs this software is in no way less efficient. Packed with a variety of simple, user friendly features, it is for photographers who prefer to focus more on taking photos than editing them. Also an open source program, it is simple to download for free.
3. Splashup Splashup: An in-browser based photo editing program, there are no downloads necessary. Simply “Jump Right In”, as the site dictates. Boasting a streamlined elegant user interface, it features a wealth of popular tools, features and applications available. However, much of what it offers is rather advanced. Splashup Lite is a great alternative that allows you to get the job done without getting bogged down looking through tools you might not necessarily need. Best of all, both versions allow you to share finished photos to websites, such as Flickr, Facebook, Picasa and more, without a hitch.
4. FotoFlexer FotoFlexer: Another one of the Photoshop alternatives that runs through a browser. It is the perfect solution if you wish to tweak a photo before sending it off to Flickr or Facebook. However, unlike Splashup, this is a very bare bones program. While it has most of the tools you’ll need to get the job done, don’t consider it a complete Photoshop replacement. Instead, consider it a convenient additional tool.
5. PhotoLine PhotoLine: The only Mac exclusively based editing program on this list, it provides you with a wealth of features designed to make editing and fine-tuning your photos a breeze. It’s not the most attractive of interfaces; nevertheless, it is user friendly enough to make the job easy. While not incredibly well known at the moment, it is definitely a program to keep in mind when it comes to simple and reliable photo editing programs.
Equipped with these tools you will make short work of any photo. It all starts with great photos, so get out there and start shooting!