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Adobe Photoshop is a great editing program used by graphic designers, but there are plenty of great alternatives for those who are on a budget.
Photoshop has been the industry standard for photo editing for decades, but with its semi-recent switch from stand-alone versions to a subscription-based program-as-a-service model, many users have found success looking elsewhere for more affordable options.
While the Photoshop name is still synonymous with photo editing, users can now find alternatives that boast almost every feature in Adobe's premiere application. From those looking to make some simple edits to family photos to those touching up professional work, there are a plethora of great photo editing applications for every need and budget.
Aside from the price, Photoshop can be challenging to learn due to the many features that the program has. For those looking for something simple and free that provides information on how to use it directly from the website, Photopea is the perfect tool to use.
Photopea is an image editor that users can use to edit images or for more complex projects like webpage design. On the website, a guide is provided to users that will help them learn how to use Photopea step by step, starting with the basics to the more complex features. It's an excellent site for those new to programs such as this and is fun to work with.
There are some great YouTube channels to learn programming and coding by making tutorials. Alongside watching these helpful tutorials, users should also take advantage of the 7-day trial periods that programs offer to see if it is a good fit for them.
PhotoWorks has the latest image processing technology giving the user a variety of things to do with a photo, such as the ability to alter the appearance of a person in the image. There are three types of packages that users can purchase. There is the standard one-year license for $19.25, the pro one-year license for $39.20, and the lifetime license for $79.80.
There are plenty of apps and programs that give users the ability to edit images with just a few quick and easy steps. However, not all of them have intricate tools for editing.
Fotor Photo Editormakes editing easy and provides various tools that both beginners and professionals can utilize. These tools include but are not limited to cropping, resizing, adding text, and adding effects to photos. Fotor Photo Editor is a free multi-platform tool, and there is the option to purchase the Fotor Pro for $3.33 a month or the Fotor Pro+ for $7.50 a month. Each option provides more tools, effects, and benefits that users of the software can take advantage of.
Editing programs don't need to cost a lot of money to prove to be effective or considered the best. Some of the best programs available are the cheap and free kinds that give users a choice to upgrade.
Pixlr is a free-to-use multi-platform program editing tool that allows users to create designs. While the free version is an excellent way for users to learn how to use the program and gives them plenty of tools, a premium subscription option is available for only $7.99 on an auto-renewal basis. The premium subscription gives users access to 50,000 templates, fonts, elements, stickers, overlays, access to AI tools, and much more.
As part of one of the most valuable tech companies in 2022, Apple has created some great electronics, such as the iPad. Luckily for those who own an iPad, there is a great alternative program/app for editing and working on graphics.
Procreate is a popular app that allows the user to take advantage of a wide array of brushes, an advanced layer system, and the ability to create graphics and edit images. Procreate is most popular in the graphic design and digital art worlds, but it's very capable of handling photo edits, too. It is not a free program but is available for a one-time payment of $9.99.
There are some great and affordable mechanical keyboards out there that many would love to have, especially those who love designing. Alongside the popular keyboards and other tech supplies, there are plenty of affordable programs that offer free versions and upgrades, such as LuminarAI.
LuminarAI is a reliable and effective photo editor that offers a variety of unique photo effects and editing features that include but are not limited to enhancing landscapes and removing unwanted details with the assistance of artificial intelligence. A free version is available, but for those who want to purchase LuminarAI, it is now on sale for $47, and the upgraded LuminarAI and Aurora HDR is $128, which offers two programs and more perks.
Trying to stick to a budget can be difficult, but there are plenty of items that are budget-friendly, such as webcams and programs. One such program is called Affinity Photo, which is available not only on the Mac and PC but also on the iPad.
Affinity Photo is another great photo editing program known for its speed, power, and precision. Affinity Photo gives users the option to do quick edits and retouch-ups and the ability to do detailed editing. It also supports limitless layers and has an entire library of adjustments, effects, and live filters. To purchase the program for a Mac or Windows, users will pay a one-time fee of $54.99, and iPad users will pay a one-time fee of $19.99.
Programs take up space on a computer, and some tend to try and keep everything organized and prioritize how much space they use. Rather than downloading the program, the website Canva can attend to all the graphic design and photo editing needs of users while giving them the option to have a desktop version.
Canva is an excellent website with various options and works as a publishing tool. The site is easy to use and allows users to create invitations, business cards, flyers, and other great projects that the user has in mind. Canva also provides templates with stock-free images and vectors. A premium option is available, giving users access to more tools for a fee of $119.99 a year.
For those wanting to test out more free programs, there are plenty out there that are worth testing. However, the one that is highly recommended to designers and editors alike is Krita.
Krita is an excellent open-source painting program perfect for those wanting to develop concept art, illustrations, and comics. It also comes with plenty of brushes and settings. If users enjoy the program and wish to see more developments made, there is an option for users to make donations on the website.
There are many cross-platform programs that are great to use when on a budget. One of these programs that should be used and worked with is called GIMP.
GIMP is a free program that many designers tend to gravitate towards when picking out a substitute for Photoshop. The cross-platform editor gives users the option to change its source code and distribute their own changes. It has sophisticated tools that are great for anyone looking to take advantage of editing software, and like Krita, there is an option on the website to donate funds.
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Sarah Sawyer is a List Writer for Screen Rant and works as a freelance digital artist and web designer. She is a horror movie buff, and when she is not working, she dabbles in video game art and design and plays as many games as humanly possibly.