Whether you are taking professional photographs, or you are simply editing pictures of your baby at home. A photo editing software can greatly improve your pictures. There are photo editing software for every budget. And for all skill level. For professionals and for beginners or amateurs as well. There are free ones. And there are paid ones too.
The best photo editing software could be in the paid category. Or could be in the free category as well. Which one of them are you interested? What is your budget? Do you want the best free program or the best paid software for your editing needs. Those are the question you may want to ask yourself. And determine on-time which one to go for. And you don’t have to worry much. Because we cover both of them here. And also cover the reasons you may want to spend or not spend in a photo editing software.
If you are a beginner or just starting out, you may want to start with the free programs. And as you improve your skill. And gain more knowledge. You go for the more advanced software that might cost you some money. Free software has limitations and might not offer you much as an aspiring professional. For example, they are limited to some extent in terms of features and tools. Especially when you compare them to the paid ones. And they might not be as versatile and extensive. And easy to use as the paid ones. They might also lack some advanced features. And potential for quick future add-ons and updates. But they can be a good starting point if you are on a tight budget. And don’t want to spend money for a start. It does not mean that money is the only factor that separates them. Free photo editor software works just as well as the paid ones. In fact most people are usually amazed at first at what the free software can do. Because they usually have the ability and potential of the paid ones. But its always a good idea to own the best of both sides. So you don’t miss out on what both worlds offer.
Let’s take a look at some of the features that the best photo editing software should have.
Multiple File Support: They should be able to support multiple file types. Such as GIF, JPEG, PNG, TIFF, and several other image file formats. It helps for more flexibility and compatibility. Because with multiple photo files, processing becomes simple and easy. Because you don’t want to be limited in any way with the image file types you can work with. In a given software. It all helps for more flexibility. And multiple file support advantage.
Tools: A good software should provide you with some basic image tools. Although there are so many tool options available in most software programs. The basic ones are the most important. Basic tools should include cropping, contrast, filters, red-eye removal, special effects, brightness, and more. And then there should be tools for adding graphics, re-sizing pictures, enhancing colors, filter, text, and more. With these basic tools, you are able to get on at a good start. And improve your skills with advanced tools. As you progress.
Layers: The best software should offer you layers as one of their features. Layers help you to create great images. Because they improve greatly, the quality of your images. They are easy to use. And there are three main category of things you can do with layers. You can apply special techniques, exposure blending, and apply local adjustments to specific areas of an image. Layers are very important for blending pictures. And making some areas of an image more transparent.
Effects: Effects are special photo software applications that enables you to make special changes to images. Effects can be used to correct some problems that your original photos have. And they are used to improve the look of pictures significantly. With effects, you can add an artistic look to images, create textured patterns, and enhance pictures generally. Well known specific effects include; watercolor, stamp, sharpen, soften, etc. With this, you are able to apply special effects that can change the edges of your image, noise level, gradient, and other aspects of an image. The image results you get after applying effects depends on the software you use. Some software offer predefined effects. With many image effects that you can choose from. All you need to do is to simply select the effect you want. From among the several different effects. You can even preview them in your browser window. To see how the image will look like when the effect is applied. Next you apply the effect. And the software will enhance the image with the effect you chose.
There are so many possibilities. In terms of what you can achieve with a photo editing software. Some software programs are clearly better than others in terms of what they offer. And what they can do. We will now look into both sides to find the best among them. We will start with the free programs. And next, we will show the best of paid software programs for photo editing. Here they are below;
GIMP: GIMP has been around for almost two decades. It offers tons of useful features including; color enhancement, layering and cloning. To name just a few of its array of features. It is one of the best free photo editing software. That many have even compared to Photoshop as having the same potential. It may not have all the features of Photoshop. But majority of photo editing tasks done on Photoshop, can be accomplished with GIMP. And best of all. It is free. Grab the GIMP software here.
Picasa: This free software is not as advanced as GIMP. Nor as Photoshop. But the appeal to many is how easy it is to use. It offers all your basic photo editing needs such as cropping, color correction, special effects, etc. Picasa is available for free download here.
Software With a Price Tag ( paid software)
Adobe Photoshop: Adobe Photoshop software is certainly the most popular photo editing software available today. It is arguably the best photo editing software as well. There are so many reasons why it is considered the best. But we may not cover all the reasons here in this article. You may want to go here to read more about it. This software is definitely aimed at professionals and serious photo editors. And indeed photo editing possibilities are endless within this program. More about the Adobe Photoshop software and how to get it is available here.
Adobe Lightroom: Adobe Lightroom is specifically made for photographers. It is essentially one of the best software programs for photographers. And photo editors as well. It enables you to shoot with multiple photos and edit them with ease. You can crop and correct pictures. And get them ready easily for print in no time. Read more about the latest version of Adobe Lightroom and how you can get it at the best price possible here.
There are several other great software that could add to the list above. But for now, we just focused on the top two for each category. And as we have seen above, those are the top performers when it comes to the best photo editing software. Prices and ease of use depends on the features that are provided. Whether you are an aspiring photographer, or working for a large magazine company. Or even a professional at what you do, there are programs that fit your needs. You don’t have to look too deep to decide which one of them is the right one for you. Just be sure of your budget and what you are willing to spend. And if you don’t want to spend money at all on a software. Software such as Photoshop, are huge investments. But they are the best around. And going for the best can make all the difference for you. You can as well start with the GIMP software if you don’t want to spend money. Because it still offers you advanced features professionals make use of.
What do you think? Which is your favorite program? Do you have any suggestion for us? We will love to hear from you. Use the comment button below.