I’m Chanpory, and this is my site on how to live and work better as a designer.

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I’m fed up with Photoshop and its one billion rarely-used features.

How about a simple photo-editor that’s quick, easy, and doesn’t cost a thousand dollars. Fortunately, there’re tons of web-based photos editors popping up. Most are crap, but some are promising. Check out these free web-based Photoshop alternatives:

1. Picnik


Arguably, Picnik is the most popular web-based photo editor. Why? Because it’s now integrated with Flickr.

2. Splashup

Very polished interface. Tools and palettes are modeled after Photoshop. And it has layers!

3. Phoenix


Part of the Aviary suite of creative apps, Phoenix also offers layers and compositing.

4. Photoshop Express

Photoshop Express

Adobe was a little late to the web-apps game, but this is a pretty good first try. I like the free 2GB of space. Unlike the real Photoshop, this web version has no ability to layer or composite images.

5. Snipshot


Nice, simple, and clear interface, with no ads at all.

6. flauntR

flautR offers a cornucopia of image tools, boasting thousands of photo effects. If you want to make your photo look like a cheezy painting, this is the place.

7. Pic Resize


Another ad-free editor. I love the huge buttons.

8. Pixenate


Hmm… looks like Pixenate was “inspired” by Pic Resize. The icons and ads are annoyingly awful, but the app works.

9. FotoFlexer


Another simple interface. This one enables you to composite and “layer” images but without using a traditional layers palette. Instead, you can drag the photos and “push” them back or forward.

10. Phixr


An example of how ugly these apps can get.

Any others?

Let me know if I’ve missed any other good ones. (I’ve tried to weed out the janky ones).

If you liked this post, please bookmark it on del.icio.us. Thank you.


  • Kirby

    gravatarMay 20, 2008
    8:05 am

    I know that you are looking for a program more closely associated with Photoshop but as a quick and easy editing app I use Google’s Picasa 2 quite often. It is very easy to use and though limited it does do some quick and easy cropping, black and white from color, soft focus, slide shows, red-eye removal, a host of other nice features, and is free.

  • mahalie

    gravatarMay 20, 2008
    10:15 am

    I use Picasa for fast photo editing too. I own Photoshop, but Picasa is just faster and easier for bulk editing a lot of photos…I export (batch resize) all my starred images at the end of a session to a folder and bulk upload them to Flickr.

    It’s not very good/intuitive for resizing photos to exact dimensions, so I’m still on the lookout for the best/easiest option for my blogging clients who always need to resize to certain width for their website, for instance.

  • Rusty

    gravatarMay 20, 2008
    10:36 am

    While it’s not free, at $59.00, Pixelmator is a strong altermative.

  • kadavy

    gravatarMay 20, 2008
    11:04 am

    I saw a live demo of http://a.viary.com/ and it looked very impressive. They have a whole suite of apps, but it looks like it’s not quite public yet.

  • fr3sh

    gravatarMay 20, 2008
    11:32 am

    http://a.viary.com/ is starting a whole suite of web based apps. You can sign up for the beta and use Phoenix.

  • Savio

    gravatarMay 20, 2008
    11:32 am

    http://www.rsizr.com has a very different approach to resize images in different proportions (PS doesn´t have this feature). That´s only a resizer tool, not a PS alternative.

  • AM

    gravatarMay 20, 2008
    12:05 pm

    I’m not sure what you mean by web-based, I mean aren’t Phoenix and Slashup desktop apps. Anyway,

    Web based: http://www.lunapic.com/editor/

    But the best free photoshop alternative is Gimp (gimp.org):

    GIMP is an acronym for GNU Image Manipulation Program. It is a freely distributed program for such tasks as photo retouching, image composition and image authoring.

    It has many capabilities. It can be used as a simple paint program, an expert quality photo retouching program, an online batch processing system, a mass production image renderer, an image format converter, etc.

    GIMP is expandable and extensible. It is designed to be augmented with plug-ins and extensions to do just about anything. The advanced scripting interface allows everything from the simplest task to the most complex image manipulation procedures to be easily scripted.

  • Chanpory Rith

    gravatarMay 20, 2008
    12:09 pm

    Hey AM, thanks for pointing out lunapic.

    I believe Phoenix and Slashup are Adobe Air apps, which means they work on web, as well on the desktop. So I think it’s for to include them.

  • luciano

    gravatarMay 20, 2008
    12:10 pm

    why not picasa ? easy, very easy for most common editing

  • jb

    gravatarMay 20, 2008
    1:47 pm

    are any of these useable programmatically? accessible via an api?

    what i’d like is to be able to give my web server php code the caperbility to resize images using a similar quality algorithm as photoshop uses. i know about imagemagic and gd but the image resize is never as good as photoshop’s.

  • Lance

    gravatarMay 20, 2008
    2:17 pm

    i did once a little tool just for resizing and rotating an image …


    got quite popular ..

    Greetings Lance

  • Allen

    gravatarMay 20, 2008
    2:43 pm

    Another free alternative is GIMP.. has almost the same features as Photoshop

  • Oxnard

    gravatarMay 20, 2008
    3:14 pm

    Paint.net is very close to Photoshop.

  • Jason

    gravatarMay 20, 2008
    4:59 pm

    I second Paint.net It is simple to use and is a very powerful photo editing program, especially for being free.

  • #

    gravatarMay 21, 2008
    4:23 am

    Wow, I can’t even believe I know one more than you :p Here is it: http://www.wiredness.com/

    (never tried though, and never tried any other)

  • James

    gravatarMay 21, 2008
    9:31 am

    GIMP and Paint.net are the two I use. Paint.net has a huge selection of add-ons created by users that allow you to do pretty much anything you want. You can also get an interface for GIMP that mimics Photoshop to make it easier to use. The only thing I have found that Paint.net can’t do is create or edit animated GIF files.

  • robsitka

    gravatarMay 21, 2008
    11:00 am

    I use Picasa for the “garden variety” chores, its database, email capabilities, and the upload to free website capabilities. But for Photoshop needs I turn to the Open Source Paint.NET. I used GIMP for a while, but really like the Paint.NET interface, power and the price can’t be beat(free).

  • NetDiva

    gravatarMay 21, 2008
    12:47 pm

    I know it’s been said but I’ll just chime in. It’s all about the Gimp!

  • T

    gravatarMay 21, 2008
    5:08 pm

    “I’m fed up with Photoshop and its one billion rarely-used features.”

    Try not pirating a program you clearly know nothing about.

  • JuanaBee

    gravatarMay 21, 2008
    8:20 pm

    For $99 you just can’t beat Corel Painter 10, student version. Add another $99 and get the student version of CorelDraw 4 (Windows only on this one) and you can have true professional graphics apps on the cheap! Though I am not a “student” by strict definition, Corel does not ask for school ID. Since I am not using either professionally, I feel that this is a fair deal for Corel as I am an amateur “learning” their apps for my personal use.

  • Cynthia

    gravatarMay 21, 2008
    10:37 pm

    Photobucket has free photo editing tools

  • Chanpory Rith

    gravatarMay 22, 2008
    8:36 am

    T, just to clarify, I have a fully licensed version of Photoshop, because I work as a designer at my day job.

    Adobe also just sent me another copy Photoshop for participating in their user studies. So that’s another non-pirated copy that I have.

    I’ve been using Photoshop for over a decade. Even before it had layers. So I’d say I know quite a bit about the program.

    The problem with Photoshop is that each new version adds more and more and more features, to the point that it just becomes bloated and harder to use. This is a post about getting back to basics.

  • T

    gravatarMay 22, 2008
    4:36 pm

    Don’t upgrade if you don’t need the new features. I happily use Photoshop CS.

    My point was most people have (pirated) Photoshop when they clearly don’t need it, and the programs you listed are actually better for them. They shouldn’t have Photoshop to begin with.

  • Rod Beckwith

    gravatarMay 22, 2008
    6:34 pm


    I am looking for an actual script that does what these sites do. I would like to purchase one for a site I am creating.

    Pleas let me know,


  • Ilyas

    gravatarMay 22, 2008
    6:57 pm

    I would like to see alternatives for Adobe Illustrator, maybe in the next post.

    (vector functionality ) Vectoring is a big deal for me, and how many of these programs support that?

    Thanks for the post.

  • Janis

    gravatarMay 22, 2008
    7:17 pm

    It’s not web-based but FastStone is a very fast photo organizer (free download)with some basic editing features. It can display and even convert RAW files. It’s great for organizing and viewing images and FAR faster than any other I’ve tried, at least for managing mass quantities of images. I never use Bridge in PS CS3 because it’s so slow on my desktop.

  • Gil Megidish

    gravatarMay 23, 2008
    1:29 am

    http://www.dumpr.net runs really awesome photoshop-like effects in real time. Recommended! :)

  • aljuk

    gravatarMay 23, 2008
    12:05 pm

    I guess it depends what you’re using it for. Personally I’d say that Photoshop’s a perfect tool. And I can’t think of any features I’d describe as rarely-used – they’re all there with good reason.

  • Tiffyy

    gravatarMay 23, 2008
    1:17 pm

    Try GIMP. I loooove it >.< Just google it, you will find it.

  • Emily

    gravatarMay 23, 2008
    2:47 pm

    Thanks for these! These’ll come in handy when I just need to resize an image or something and don’t wanna have to wait for a program to open.

  • Melissa

    gravatarMay 23, 2008
    3:54 pm

    I use Paint.net for all of my editing needs =).

  • BigNerd

    gravatarMay 23, 2008
    5:56 pm

    Any takers for Photofiltre? It’s freeware.

    http://photofiltre.free.fr/ v6.3.1 seems to be the latest version.

    I carry a copy on my USB stick.

  • Migoo

    gravatarMay 25, 2008
    12:16 pm

    Yes photofiltre is great! light! fast! and… free! http://photofiltre.free.fr/frames_en.htm

  • sir jorge

    gravatarMay 26, 2008
    9:57 pm

    they might be alternatives, but just like most knock offs…they are inferior.

  • Postal57

    gravatarMay 27, 2008
    12:33 pm

    If you take the trouble to do a bit of learning you will find that there is nothing that can replace Photoshop. If you can’t afford Photoshop, The Gimp is the best but I’m afraid that here too there is going to be learning involved.

  • petnos

    gravatarMay 29, 2008
    6:45 am

    the list is great. i will add to it but i forget the name of sites that is suitable for this category. when i find them i will write them down.

  • DexX

    gravatarMay 31, 2008
    7:56 am

    For free vector editing, Inkscape is pretty good.

  • Don

    gravatarMay 31, 2008
    11:43 pm

    Wow. . I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many people with sublimated Photoshop Envy in all my life. :)

  • boo

    gravatarMay 31, 2008
    11:51 pm

    Why not use a picture frame; no buttons, simple as hell.


  • Family Matters

    gravatarJun 1, 2008
    5:55 pm

    Great stuff!

    For my graphic design, I’ve been using Microsoft Word for layering WordArt text and photos, and IrfanView (or Picasa) for editing. That was good enough for most things, but requires switching applications all the time, even if the results look great (see Family Matters).

    I’m going to try your reviewed alternatives, so thank you for posting. I like your other popular posts as well.

    Gal Baras

  • Thakur Dalip Singh

    gravatarJun 1, 2008
    9:09 pm

    IRfanview is very useful and easy to use application. It is free. It can convert raw also. Why it is not listed here? None of the listed are true alternatives to Photoshop but easier, smaller and free to use for novices.

  • Timmay

    gravatarJun 2, 2008
    11:15 am

    “I’m fed up with Photoshop and its one billion rarely-used features…”

    Wow- what a cranky person!

    Its Photoshop dude- Its FOR professionals! they never claimed different!

    Go play with Windows ‘Draw’ if its too overwheming for ya!

  • David B. Fisher

    gravatarJun 4, 2008
    9:24 am

    Those who complain about Photoshop do not need it. Adobe won’t mind a bit. I won’t mind. I DO mind whining–¦

  • paul

    gravatarJun 6, 2008
    3:17 pm

    GIMP GIMP GIMP GIMP!!!!! almost all the features of photoshop. and some unique ones too. all hail GIMP!

  • Jherek

    gravatarJun 10, 2008
    12:25 pm

    You can try http://kizoa.fr It’s in french for the moment, but will be translated in english soon.

  • M. Tisdale

    gravatarJun 10, 2008
    1:57 pm

    Nice review! We did one as well back in April 07 and updated it back in March of this year. You can read our take here – http://2aday.wordpress.com/2007/04/13/my-free-photoshop-the-5-best-online-editors/

    We reviewed Fauxto, Picnik, Pixenate, Snipshot (which is really, really fast), WebpictTool and Picture2Life.

  • mello

    gravatarJun 10, 2008
    2:35 pm

    In reply to Ilyas:

    I use Inkscape as an open source vector graphic programme. It compliments the GIMP nicely. It isn’t exactly like Illustrator but close enough, with some fun features.

  • G. Austin

    gravatarJun 10, 2008
    9:18 pm

    All though this one is not web based, it is FREEWARE. http://www.irfanview.com I have used Irfy for quite some time and prefer it for its ease of use and useful advanced tools. I wouldn’t recommend anything else for photo editing.

  • Philippe Roy

    gravatarJun 11, 2008
    1:06 am

    Although I’m unlikely to use any of those since the photos I manipulate are 30mb and more (and I like all the gizmos in PhotoShop)… it’s certainly a good alternative to all my friends that ask about simpler/easier things than PhotoShop to “resize/contrast” their photos!! Thanks!

  • 6pack Abs

    gravatarJun 11, 2008
    1:53 am

    You forgot all programs with the free shareware trial. Use it and don’t waste money and let a product collect dust.

  • gregvanderlaan.com

    gravatarJun 11, 2008
    7:08 am

    paint.net has astounding polar distortion effects. for generating psychedelic images it is great…

    arcsoft photo 2.0 is easy and just gets the job done for basic image resizing, cropping and brightness/contrast-sharpen. mirror effect.

    gimp has the best lens flares: supernova, hidden planet.. great for adding mystical fairies glowing near your friends faces…

  • macs

    gravatarJun 11, 2008
    9:03 am

    stupendi!!! ne farò una versione in italiano!

    great! i like it, i’ll publish an italian version on my new blog! my favourite is flauntR :D

  • Gwen

    gravatarJun 11, 2008
    7:11 pm

    Not a web based application, but both my sister and I have been using Tech Smith’s SnagIt! for years now. The price can’t be beaten and it just gets better and better all the time. We both love it and don’t know what we’d go without it. Tech Smith is a superb Company with remarkable customer support. They have other applications that probably are a good adjunct, Camtasia Studio, but neither of us have used that one.

    Right now, I’m trying to work with one of the recommended ones: Adobe Photoshop Express. (Free ed.)

    I’ve looked at all the others posted, and GIMP, Picassa, et al. Just could never get my head around them.

    But then, my needs are simple.

  • sreedharan.t.p

    gravatarJun 11, 2008
    10:50 pm

    gimp is a usful and comfortable alternative to photoshop.

  • efrain

    gravatarJun 11, 2008
    11:44 pm

    i have a macbook pro (OS 10.5.3) and I use GIMP. For some reason, INKSCAPE won’t install on the computer, and I can’t even get GIMPSHOP to work either. Anyone have any tips on this?

  • John D Burgoyne

    gravatarJun 12, 2008
    3:41 am

    For those who have time to waste playing with any or all of the expensive top-end programmes, fine just stay with them. For those interested in photography with none of its inherent, potential gimmicry, use Paint.net.com. It is superb, easy to use and so well-supported, it is embarassing.

  • adobe

    gravatarJun 12, 2008
    7:19 am

    As a professional graphic artist, I have to say that Photoshop rawks! And, I’m glad it has a billion features – all of which I use to give me the widest range possible for my projects.

    But if you’re limited – in one way or another – then I can see that ‘free’ and ‘almost free’ is a good fit for you hobbyist.

  • Jen

    gravatarJun 12, 2008
    7:43 pm

    I didn’t notice if anyone had mentioned IrfanView. It’s totally free and so useful. You can’t do anything fancy, but if I need to crop, resize, save as a JPEG, it works like a charm. Super simple. I use it almost every day.

  • Eric C

    gravatarJun 15, 2008
    11:15 am

    I own and enjoy very much Corel paint shop photo pro. Only $99.00, and has layers, clone brush and lots of effects. Add an Alienskin plug in or 2, and you can do incredible pro quality stuff.

  • ramon_omar

    gravatarJun 15, 2008
    7:52 pm

    GIMP is functional and practical. As a user of Photoshop for years I found the switch easy and comfortable.

    Give it a shot and while you’re at it get Ubuntu too!

  • Eric C

    gravatarJun 16, 2008
    6:02 am

    Oh yeah, forgot to say Picasa is awesome. Probably the best free thing ever.

  • Shreemani

    gravatarJun 18, 2008
    2:53 am

    As the topic goes, “10 Free Web-based Alternatives to Photoshop

    So… Photoshop still rocks. I did try to get used to Gimp… but lost my interest somewhere … I will definitely try it again too.

  • Murk

    gravatarJun 18, 2008
    4:09 am

    I’m a bit fed up with Photoshop too. I’m using CS2 and it takes a good three minutes to fully load up on my (now) antique HP laptop. Plus, there’s not a decent “browser” interface.

    So, for bulk processing (and for animation) I still ise PaintShopPro v7. Ok, it’s not web based, but it loads in seconds, it has all the browser capabilities I need, and it can batch process. (I find it particularly useful for stepping down the jpeg quality on hundreds of photographs).

    However, there is one job that no Windows or Mac software can cope with – batch renaming images as they come off the camera. I found this fantastic utility called MS-DOS ….

  • Irene

    gravatarJun 20, 2008
    11:41 pm

    @Murk: CKRename, useful for batch renaming files.

  • Gabriel S

    gravatarJun 21, 2008
    10:48 am

    I would like to suggest PhotoFiltre. It is also a free photo editor. Grant it, it is not photoshop but it definitely gets the job done with more than enough ease. Check it out :)

  • john

    gravatarJun 23, 2008
    11:24 pm

    i think gimpshop is not maintained anymore, because nobody really wanted it. The Gimp interface has some advantages over the unflexible photoshop one, so the people just used gimp instead of gimpshop.

  • Flo

    gravatarJun 24, 2008
    12:50 am

    However, there is one job that no Windows or Mac software can cope with – batch renaming images as they come off the camera.

    The camera software that I use (“ZoomBrowser EX”) can rename images during download. Veeery useful indeed.

    I’m pretty sure there are other utilities for batch renaming, too.

  • trixie

    gravatarJun 25, 2008
    1:09 pm

    hmm.. I wish that photoshop was a free program,and that there werent virus’s and such. Many people I know have tryed to download an alternative to photoshop because they didnt have enough money to actually go out and but the cd-rom. Well, the one they downloaded ended up being a very bad virus, and they had to pay quite a bit of money to get there computer fixed. I dont appreciate scammers, everyone has there hobbies, and my friend just couldnt pay for the thing she liked to do most. So, people that are just trying to scam others and arent actually giving them a free program, that is useful, and they will love. Just.. stop.

  • Brian

    gravatarJun 27, 2008
    8:57 am

    Rod & jb,

    There’s freeware program, imagemagick, you can get that will resize, optimize, etc. images server-side…


    Pretty easy to use and implement…

  • Guy

    gravatarJun 29, 2008
    6:18 pm

    Wiredness works pretty well for quick edits and re-sizes.

  • *NEmo*_(^.^)

    gravatarJun 30, 2008
    2:49 am

    I use Paint-Shop Pro9 but on the web flauntR is a good choice. :M

  • woahhh

    gravatarJul 2, 2008
    8:20 pm

    I LOVE FlauntR. =]] I used to use picnik a lot but flauntr is my favorite now

    only one slight problem! is anyonw having trouble downloading the pictures from flauntr to your computer because I sure am.

  • Megan

    gravatarJul 4, 2008
    11:55 am

    There is also Photofiltre. I use it, it works very nice :]

  • Aye

    gravatarJul 11, 2008
    12:17 am

    I tried them all and they all suck!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I wanna make a naked picture.!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Karen Falcon

    gravatarJul 12, 2008
    8:10 pm

    Hi, I love your post. I stumbled upon it, via stumble, of course.

    Hey, could you also tell me/us a free alternative to weblayouts?

    I am on blogger, and I really like all the wordpress sites I see so much better. I just didn’t know about it before I went ahead and made my blogger blog.

    I appreciate any feedback! I’m going to write up a review of your post on my blog and link back to you. xoxox ~Karen Falcon http://falconsays.com

  • PervasivePersuasion.com

    gravatarJul 16, 2008
    6:27 am

    There are other alternatives for creating web design graphics than those listed here. They may not be free, but “free” sould not be a primary criterion for a professional web designer selecting tools.

    Bruce Arnold Miami Florida

  • Alan

    gravatarJul 18, 2008
    9:10 am

    If anyone needs a good photo editor for use with Mac OS X Leopard, try LiveQuartz (livequartz.com). It’s a free app, not web-based, and is based on non-destructive layers and filters. I found it to be extremely intuitive and easy to use (the Help videos cover just about everything you need to know).

  • Juicy Joe

    gravatarJul 18, 2008
    4:34 pm

    Does anyone know a free website were I can go to edit a picture to black and white but it still has a color?

  • Stephanie

    gravatarJul 19, 2008
    7:35 am

    THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Finally, someone who gets it.

  • Stephanie

    gravatarJul 19, 2008
    7:46 am

    In response to the question: “Does anyone know a free website where I can go to edit a picture to black and white but it still has a color?” Yes, Picnik does that. It’s a free web-based program at http://www.picnik.com. Once in, click on “Create” and either use Black & White (the first feature listed under Create). Use the Fade feature to control how much B&W you want applied to your pic. You can also use Focal B&W down further on the Create menu to make only certain parts of your pic B&W.

  • marcel lemieux

    gravatarJul 22, 2008
    2:26 pm

    A great list…tried some of them..they all do what they are supposed to do….also the comments here are all useful and positive…..a big thanks

  • Tiffany

    gravatarJul 25, 2008
    10:50 pm

    photofiltre is great its almost exactly like photoshop and its free.

  • Barbara

    gravatarJul 26, 2008
    10:56 pm

    Thanks for this list – I hadn’t heard of some of these. While I rely on photoshop for certain things – quick editing online would be a real bonus (especially on my laptop). I’ll be sure to check these out!

  • Jason

    gravatarJul 28, 2008
    9:25 am

    There’s a new one call pictureful.com, it has automatic red-eye removal and some other simple things for those that don’t want a full image editor. It also has some overlay effects. check it out pictureful.com ( Free Online Photo Editor ).

  • johnnie

    gravatarJul 31, 2008
    1:40 am

    Hi , I am looking for a free programe that allows you to edit the pic, like putting your face onto another photo.

  • AkiraMayMayKikiru

    gravatarAug 3, 2008
    8:14 pm

    Paint.Net & Gimp i have, i dont use gimp much tho. I use paint.net ALOT, but when i try to upload a picture on photobucket or anyother site, it refuses to let me, Errr..thats the only problem with paint.

  • Johnny12g

    gravatarAug 9, 2008
    3:33 pm

    I use Photoscape. Found it easy to use and it’s a free download. It has lots of features that u don’t get with most free software.

  • Me

    gravatarAug 9, 2008
    11:19 pm

    “Its Photoshop dude- Its FOR professionals! they never claimed different!” Exactly. That really says it all. If you’re not using those features it’s because you’re not that talented or creative, or have no need for them, in which case, you don’t NEED photoshop, but there really is NO alternative for Photoshop. Inferior programs that do less, sure, but no replacements.

  • M. R. Shah

    gravatarAug 11, 2008
    3:38 am

    Thank you all. It’s excellent post for Photoshop users. “Photoscape” & “GIMP” – The Free photo editing softwars are really Good for General Purpose use. If you are a professional Designer and earning from your creativity, Photoshop is a must even after a thousand dollar. It saves lots of time and helps you to show you your talent.

  • Sudhir Borde

    gravatarAug 11, 2008
    8:56 pm

    Hi Friends, I want such software in which i can edit beautiful broders and can wite down my name at the corners so which will be best software (except photoshop),

    Waiting for reply,


  • S

    gravatarAug 17, 2008
    8:47 am

    I like Windows Live Photo Gallery for organising a basic editing- it’s free to download and is simple.

  • Michael Hinkel

    gravatarAug 18, 2008
    7:36 am

    Quite nice is Pixlr @ http://www.pixlr.com/

  • Zefei Xuan

    gravatarAug 27, 2008
    7:52 pm

    For people that want some quick special effects (skin retouch, color enhancement, red eye removal) on their photos, you may as well consider this online editor: http://www.picmagick.com

  • Melv

    gravatarSep 4, 2008
    8:56 pm

    they’re decent resources for those who just want the absolute basics and simple web-based image manipulation

  • Aiden

    gravatarSep 5, 2008
    2:14 am

    “I’m fed up with Photoshop and its one billion rarely-used features.” I’m sorry you’re not educated in the program, but I fail to see how that’s a valid point of contention.

    “How about a simple photo-editor that’s quick, easy, and doesn’t cost a thousand dollars.” $1000? Current standard price from Adobe = $649.00 USD. (http://www.adobe.com/products/photoshop/index.html) Even cheaper from a third party (Amazon, Newegg, etc.)

    While these web apps can be a nice, scaled down image editing alternative, comparing them on the same level as Photoshop does the program a massive injustice. Those “billion” rarely used functions that you’re unfamiliar with may be common place and essential to others.

  • Vivek

    gravatarSep 6, 2008
    10:46 am

    Best commercial alternative to Photoshop is Paint Shop Pro (PSP for its fans). I have been using PSP v7 for years, and it has a cool Animation Shop Pro addon bundled with it. Best freeware alternative to Photoshop is probably the GIMP which is quite powerful but a bit cumbersome, while Paint.Net is still in its infancy. IrfanView and Picasa are also lightweight picture tools with some editing features. I am surprised no one mentioned XNView — it is a freeware image browser, and it has support for lots of image formats, batch conversions and what not. It is what I use for most of my rudimentary image manipulations. The trick to learning new things is to always keep explore for new and hopefully better alternatives. Free is fun!

  • canadianmomma

    gravatarSep 14, 2008
    11:25 pm

    I was wondering does anyone kno a site where i can go on and add different colors to a tattoo i want to get but want to look for colors first. Thanks

  • Sue

    gravatarSep 15, 2008
    9:23 am

    Its good, but I uses Picasa 2. Cos it has plenty re-size, colour etc. Really very useful.

  • gopal

    gravatarSep 16, 2008
    1:50 am

    i would like to have any of the above softwares. i donot know how it works. it will be known after using the software.


  • Cricket Vail

    gravatarSep 21, 2008
    9:45 pm

    I have been using picassa2 for a couple of years now. Just upgraded to Picassa3. Easier to use and has a couple of features. I love it .

  • Nero62

    gravatarSep 25, 2008
    8:41 pm

    I’ve used Picasa, I’ve tried GIMP and Paint.net. They’re all pretty useful and good programs. Right now I’m using Photoscape and it seems to be a pretty good open-source option from the average user, although it can be unstable at times and seems to use a lot of memory. But it does have some pretty cool effects, at any rate it’s worth a try.

  • erosthegeek

    gravatarSep 27, 2008
    7:06 am

    I have stumbled onto several of these web based photoshop-esque apps in the last couple of months. One that I don’t see in your list and I haven’t seen anyone mention in the comments is Sumo Paint. It’s only beta, I guess, but it already has layer support.

  • erosthegeek

    gravatarSep 27, 2008
    7:07 am

    Forgot to leave a link. :-P


  • Jeff CJ

    gravatarSep 30, 2008
    12:25 am

    It isn’t free (or web-based), but for only $89 it would be hard to beat Xara Xtreme. It is a lightning-fast vector-based graphic app. It comes with a free 30-day trial. http://www.xara.com

  • Jeff CJ

    gravatarSep 30, 2008
    12:48 am

    It’s neither free nor web-based, but a discussion of low-cost graphics programs wouldn’t be complete without the screaming fast vector-based Xara Xtreme (www.xara.com). At $89 it definitely isn’t freeware, but a great deal for the money. You can download a 30-day free trial.

  • Abby

    gravatarSep 30, 2008
    7:28 pm

    Any recs for a simple program for creating stuff with both images and text eg. a promo sign?

  • Aner

    gravatarOct 4, 2008
    10:38 am

    Hi , You missed Irfan View.Its great and free, worth a review.

  • Lee

    gravatarOct 7, 2008
    4:55 pm

    We teach photo classes and use Photoshop elements and Picasa.

    Elements 2.0 can still be picked up for around $12-18. Great for beginners.

    But I am looking for a free one to also use in classes. Just down loaded Paint.net.

    I am also loooking at Serif PhotoPlus 6. it is an older version that they give away for free. They are currently at 8.

  • Jarroid Warner

    gravatarOct 16, 2008
    1:38 pm

    I wanted 2 know which of these you can design clothes suc as t-shirts like on photo shop??????? HELP???

  • Picanuper

    gravatarOct 19, 2008
    3:24 am

    This guy’s a fool. A number of people here have pointed out, don’t use features you don’t like or use. Simple; the point is, they’re there with Photoshop.

    I’ve tried a number of the “alternatives” – Gimp is slow, splattered all over the desktop and just nasty, Paint.Net is OK but the print facilities are poor, Picnik is a con – its useful features are only available if you buy the “premium” version. And so on.

    You get what you pay for. Photoshop works, it does pretty well everything the “free alternatives” do, does them better and does plenty more, too.

    Most of what’s listed here is a waste of time. Try them and find out for yourself !

  • Emilie

    gravatarOct 19, 2008
    9:19 pm

    Hey there,

    Im wondering if anyone can suggest a free program that will enable me to scan and edit slides on a flat bed scanner. Cant seem to find anything that will work.

    Thank you


  • JessicRAWWR

    gravatarOct 21, 2008
    4:12 am


    I think that Picnik is a really good site, I heard about it from a friend and only ever used that one. but now I will try all of these as well as these ones might be better.

    (: Thank you Jessica x

  • Liam:]

    gravatarOct 21, 2008
    10:38 am

    PhotoFiltre. its not web based, either. they’res tutorials to do almost everything in photoshop.

  • mariska

    gravatarOct 26, 2008
    1:50 pm

    II Use Photo Scape N I THink Its Quite Good x

  • Freeware

    gravatarOct 28, 2008
    1:01 am

    I think photoshop is still alive and well in the professional design studios as this was the standard but for the home enthusiast there is a vast array of online and freeware tools now available – look out Adobe!!!

  • AlphaOmega

    gravatarNov 13, 2008
    10:20 am

    Why you may not use those 1 billion extra features, the majority of professional graphic artists find those features invaluable tools.

    Nonetheless, As previously mentioned a few good free alternatives are Picasa and Gimp.

    Though I use photoshop extensively and have never found a free alternative that can do everything I need it to do.

    Thanks for the list though.. These come in handy for clients that just need a simple quick editor.

  • Smurfy

    gravatarNov 17, 2008
    3:51 pm

    i make animated avi’s and photoscape was very good and easy to use…it has alot of feature and is of course free…hope dis helps some1! =]

  • Gimp All the way

    gravatarNov 29, 2008
    12:01 am


    (low rumble)


    (low rumble)


    (low rumble)


    (low rumble)


    (low rumble)


    (low rumble)


    (low rumble)


    (low rumble)


    (low rumble)


    (low rumble)


    (low rumble)

    Gimp is the best!

  • dracula

    gravatarDec 6, 2008
    11:51 am

    i use photoscape. it’s nice and easy to use.

  • Erin

    gravatarDec 6, 2008
    11:16 pm

    I use Photofiltre for my photo editing and it works really good. ^.^

  • Nativedigi

    gravatarDec 11, 2008
    4:19 pm

    GIMP is great when you cant afford photoshop but still photoshop is the best!

  • Phil

    gravatarDec 21, 2008
    3:41 pm

    I’m looking for an app that I can use to create report graphics, and donb;t need to re-touch photos are anything fancy. Pick up a pdf or jpeg, put a figure legend in it etc.

    Which of the ones discussed here would be best for me?

  • Los Angeles

    gravatarJan 6, 2009
    1:41 pm

    Jpeg or jpg is the way to go.

  • Jordan

    gravatarJan 13, 2009
    1:31 pm

    gimp.org Ive used like 20 different programs and while photoshop remains the industrial standard and is in my opinion the best, gimp is your best alternative and is free, It doesn’t run as lightly on your computer as photoshop but is equally powerfull and boasts some unique traits, I highly recomend it.

  • Marilynn

    gravatarJan 15, 2009
    1:30 pm

    Picasa 3 is a good photo editor for FREE

  • Jordan

    gravatarJan 15, 2009
    11:26 pm

    I tried picassa all you can do is retouching you can’t do anything useful with it and the way it scanns your comp for pix is annoying and then makes itself your default photo viewer

  • MM

    gravatarJan 23, 2009
    8:56 am

    Photobucket.com now has photo editing software after you do an upload.

  • photo editing junkie

    gravatarJan 23, 2009
    5:13 pm

    Ive tried most of the programs on the list. Some of them require you “sign up” with them in order to use their program. This sucks especially cuz they’ll pile your email inbox/junk box with spam email. For advanced stuff I guess gimp is pretty good as an alternative to Photoshop. If only there was an EASY button for it… (sigh)

  • pixelbypixel

    gravatarJan 23, 2009
    5:16 pm

    Gimp is a pretty good alternative to photoshop. If only there were an EASY button for it…(sigh)

  • Alex

    gravatarJan 27, 2009
    3:02 pm

    Ha. I Downloaded Adobe Master Collection CS4 Full Version Fo Free!

  • Alice Ting

    gravatarFeb 4, 2009
    6:19 pm

    Hi Dear, Is there any on-line web-site that I can transfer person A from image one to image B ? Any on-line to change a person eyeballs from looking right to left ? Help…..!!!


  • nikki

    gravatarFeb 4, 2009
    10:58 pm

    this is to alex that left a comment on janurary 27, 2009…how did you download it for free? i saw no trial offer avaliable….share the wealth …how did you do it and what are the catches?

  • Reele

    gravatarFeb 11, 2009
    5:41 pm

    I think s site called Sumo Paint should be added to this list. It is quite useful also as it has a variety of tools and also allows for layers.

  • aru

    gravatarFeb 15, 2009
    1:46 am

    hi this is pavan i am using gimp for all my website graphics and my personal photos.

    gimp is a very good alternative to photoshop moreover it is free.

  • RodWright

    gravatarFeb 15, 2009
    9:26 pm

    My problem is with PhotoShop Elements. I’ve owned all versions since 2.0 but am very unhappy with the slowness of its editor. It just plain gets bogged down…but then we have more than 50,000 photos to be managed. I’d be happy to consider an alternative, but would not want to recreate all of the “tags” as we’ve spent years attaching them to photos.

    Any suggested alternatives that can input/convert PS7 tags?

  • RodWright

    gravatarFeb 15, 2009
    9:27 pm

    Correction I should have said I was unhappy with the Organizer rather than the PSE7 editor.

  • RedLightning

    gravatarFeb 19, 2009
    4:37 pm

    You can always check out these links about how to get adobe photoshop CS 3 or 4 for free. Both are portable editions wich means they are reduced in sice but not i functions, kind of surprised it is possible to do that.

  • mike

    gravatarFeb 25, 2009
    3:25 am

    wondering if anyone knows of a good free program that will redraw an image to another application, like myspace game applications

    example: load image into program and click the program or in my case a whiteboard on another application and the image gets redrawn without me doing anything


  • ak

    gravatarFeb 26, 2009
    11:06 am

    This probably deserves the no.1 spot : http://www.pxlr.com

    Loads faster than all the other ones , and nearly as powerful as Photoshop

  • Bosse

    gravatarMar 7, 2009
    7:44 am

    I agree with ak http://www.pixlr.com/ Yes, yes, yes!

  • Em

    gravatarMar 9, 2009
    3:27 pm

    The correct url to the above comment is http://pixlr.com/ and it is hands down the best application I have ever used via web.

  • Putude

    gravatarMar 14, 2009
    10:35 pm

    Truly I still confuse to use GIMP and another similar. ArtWeaver or similar maybe a good choice.

  • Barney

    gravatarMar 17, 2009
    5:25 am

    Hi I am trying to edit a photo of my car and change the color as well as add stripes etc. Any ideas on simplest & “free” program that will do this? Thx Barney

  • lewis davidson

    gravatarMar 24, 2009
    7:11 am

    There is also SUMO.

    Gimp is free, but must be installed with the correct files first.

    Personally for MAC users, I reccommend Pixelmator.

    It is not free but damn powerful and cheap!

    Why is it different? Because it runs off the graphics card not the chip itself.

    This is revolutionary, and makes it a very fast program that wont destroy system resources, so if you multi task with many apps open it is great.

    Also I recommend image tricks, and picturesque.

    image tricks is free, picturesque is cheap and great for resizing and adding simple image effects, like borders, exporting to png in a click, cropping, and adding that web 2.0 reflection effect.

    If you want to manipulate vector art, and text, get art text.

    please note: all of these apps are for MACS!

  • lewis davidson

    gravatarMar 24, 2009
    7:14 am

    Please note, I love photoshop and am not knocking it, if you are a power user it is amazing, also there is a must have plug in for photoshop called sitegrinder.

    This is one of my favorite tools for making websites.

    Photoshop CS4, with Illustrator using the smart object feature, and site grinder, make creating original designs and rendering them to websites, a truly enjoyable experience.

    IMO worth the money to get all 3, but if you can’t afford it, get Rapid Weaver, Pixelmator and Art Text.

    Although not as powerful you can still make great looking stuff.

  • Josh Whitman

    gravatarMar 24, 2009
    9:29 am

    Following up on Jherek I had a look at http://www.kizoa.com. They are now in English and they really are worth a visit. They do some of the stuff picnik does except that you can also organize your photos online and build personalized slideshows. I don’t know how they compare to the other sites though. Maybe it’s high time we built a comparison! What do you think?

  • Wissam

    gravatarMar 28, 2009
    8:56 am

    How ever all that came up is good, each one have its special function but still Photoshop is the one standing for professionals and no other can do what this software can do….

  • Buby

    gravatarApr 2, 2009
    6:37 am

    I have to say all of the site above are cool. But I love this open source script at http://www.stockfreephoto.com, which could enable you build an online photo editor by yourself. Believe it or not!

  • M

    gravatarApr 3, 2009
    4:49 am

    Is it possible to make farks with any of thse free sites listed? I just want to play around, but I don’t want to pay a bunch of money. Things like super imposing images on other images. What would be best for that?

  • Phil

    gravatarApr 14, 2009
    10:21 am

    For all you “elitists”, who were insulted by the Authors comments; he was only pointing out alternatives to Photoshop were available if you don’t need all of the features or can’t afford it. It’s beyond my two active braincells why that would offend anyone. Thank you Chanpory Rith. Now where is that “uninstall” for Photoshop?

  • ME

    gravatarApr 24, 2009
    2:06 pm

    Wow! Great info, but i agree with Phil. Would you get the boxing gloves out if the author was suggesting alternatives to expensive cars?

    Bottom line is there are professionals and there are hobbiests. As the latter, I appreciate this info.

    Just because you use all the features doesn’t mean you produce great content. Porn is “movie making” too, and it’s still junk!

    Take a pill!

  • Regina

    gravatarApr 25, 2009
    9:21 am

    OK, I am a really not technical at all and ran into this site totally by suprise while trying to figure out (for NON-techy people who are NOT designers and have no programming skills at all and usually have no photoshop or Mac) HOW TO:

    1. resize and rename images in BATCHES quickly and easily to a website (postings happen from different cities by different people via WordPress) from different events. So we all would resize our own event images on our own, rename them properly and upload them via WordPress.

    2. Does anyone know if we could easily Tag the photos if someone interesting is in the image…it would be such a nice feature. Does it require some fancy software… I am sure these questions sound stupid to any professional but I really don’t understand the technical part of this process. I know Picasa is not the answer – at least I think it is not though I figured one can do resizing in batches, not sure about renaming..and tagging is likely impossible.

  • Brooke

    gravatarApr 25, 2009
    4:47 pm

    im just scared incase i get a virus , like i would rather go on the ones that you do online like , piknik , because its simple and is online , you dont have to download anything , but has anyone got a good website that i can go on ???

    I just cant get myself to download a programme incase i get a virus because this is my new laptop , any suggestions ??

    thanx !

  • kiana

    gravatarApr 29, 2009
    6:34 pm

    wow thanks i was desperate!! XD im editing my photos while typing thanks again !!!!]

  • Urban Woodswalker

    gravatarApr 30, 2009
    12:59 pm

    Photoshop Elements is Wonderful and does much of the same things as Photoshop pro. No, its not free (mine was) but its cheap…especially older versions.

    Its way easier to use than Gimp…I could not figure that out at all. I really strugglesd with it for a long time.

    Elements gives professional results and is extremely easy. When I had Photoshop pro (cost me $750.00) a decade ago, that was a bit difficult, but then I am a professional illustrator…I need it back then. And I am completely self taught with all computer things.

    I wish folks would stop bashing photoshop and saying its too expensive when Elements is easy and just as good with results for the “regular person.”

  • Newfiebait

    gravatarMay 3, 2009
    4:35 am

    Hello all you professional Photoshop users. I’m looking to learn all the elements of Photoshop, Are there any teachers out there? Of course I need a beginners course? Looking for a teacher with in the Toronto region. Perhaps someone can recommend a teacher. Hope to hear back.


  • Michelle Madhok

    gravatarMay 5, 2009
    9:03 am

    I’m looking for a program where we can remove the background of a photo and just leave us with the subject matter. any ideas on what I can use to do that?

  • JR

    gravatarMay 7, 2009
    7:51 am

    I’m looking for the samething…want a “FREE” way to remove the background and leave the object…no trials or signups.

  • picediter2222

    gravatarMay 15, 2009
    9:33 pm

    picnik works okay, but there are a lot of effects you have to pay for:( i recommend FOTOFLEXER because it has the same effects, which may take more time but is all free. the only things that really really really suck are the stickers and text. especially text. blah. also, doesn anybody know of something like MS PAINT for MACS? i want the simplicity of putting text on photos and overlapping without all the crap. thanks(: i would like these to be free. downloading is okay. if you have any recommendations email sweeterthancandy74@yahoo.com or if you need any pics edited(: please NO SPAM!!!!

  • terkoz

    gravatarMay 17, 2009
    7:27 pm

    Any recs for a simple program for creating stuff with both images and text eg. a promo sign?

  • Milo

    gravatarMay 20, 2009
    4:28 pm

    The closest thing i have seen to photoshop is gimp. The best part is it free

  • Phil S.

    gravatarMay 27, 2009
    3:20 am

    Did ANYBODY reading this article notice it was about WEB BASED alternatives…

    Gimp, Et. Al. are great but they are not web based. At the present, that is a tall order.

    Phil S.

  • Teg’s…..

    gravatarMay 30, 2009
    1:37 am

    Hi all, Ok this is how it is…….im not real bright but I know how to click a mouse…..I would like to find a program that can turn a pic of my horse into a unicorn in a forest or my colt running out of a sandstorm etc….I need help cause im so damn pissed that a 14yr up the road can do it with there cats pictures Id like to do it with my horses so I can later add to a web site etc if I decide to breed them…..I also have time on my hands to learn so please help……

  • april

    gravatarJun 9, 2009
    4:34 am

    PhotoScape is great, it’s free and you can make georgous mosaics or collages with it.

  • Colin

    gravatarJun 16, 2009
    8:03 am

    I am surprised only one mention of Sumo. It is really easy to use and is ideal for very quick jobs – like putting a green tint on your Twitter avatar for instance.

  • anonymous

    gravatarJun 17, 2009
    2:02 pm

    what is the best and most userfriendly, easy but allows you to do stuff.i currently use fotoflexer and like it its easy with stuff to do but i want something thats just as easy and will allow you to do more

  • chogie65

    gravatarJun 20, 2009
    5:40 am

    Go into picasso 3 and read about it. The programme appears for about 10 seconds & then dissapears. I lost everything that was in the programme, as lots of other people have.

  • Mystic

    gravatarJun 20, 2009
    10:00 am

    I just want to create a logo >.< Im not good and computers files videos or anything lol Just want to create a logo, dont exactly have the money to pay as im still young and looking for a car etc but i just want a logo for my website/clan :( lol

    (Was told quite a few people use photoshop for their logo’s) =o

  • winston

    gravatarJun 26, 2009
    12:17 pm

    please help me find some free software to remove ugly background, without making the pic look like its been done, send me an email at vinnieborg@yahoo.co.uk I’ll be real appreciative

  • Edward Chalkley

    gravatarJul 18, 2009
    12:07 am

    Can anyone recommend the best alternative photoshopon the list of downloads for Mac.



  • Doc Dan

    gravatarJul 19, 2009
    7:36 pm

    GIMP I believe is a UK product, it’s like Photo Shop in what it can do. The manual is in it’s HELP. GIMP should have been in the list of free 10 –it will make the list 11, and with Picasa3 the list becomes a complete 12.

  • Cooper

    gravatarJul 21, 2009
    3:50 pm

    I hope GIMP updates soon.. it keeps driving me off because it keeps crashing…

    Also Doc Dan, GIMP is not web-based.

  • kamryn

    gravatarAug 8, 2009
    4:31 pm

    you should put up photoscape ! it’s an awesome freeware for photo editing, you can do soo much with it !

  • David

    gravatarAug 14, 2009
    10:21 am

    Check out http://www.freeserifsoftware.com They have several free programs (draw, photo, etc.) that are very well done and they have low cost upgrades to their pro versions that are very comparable to newer versions of photoshop, illustrator, etc. Check them out.

  • mark

    gravatarAug 20, 2009
    10:27 am

    anybody know where i can edit a black and white photo and add color accent?

  • Migin Vincent

    gravatarSep 4, 2009
    11:37 pm

    I have been reviewing all types of softwares for many years now and I personally use Photoshop for my professional designs. For those who are fed up with photoshop haven’t found the fruits in it.If you notice with the CS versions, the amount of crashes and hanging has significantly reduced over the years and also at the same time grown(bloated).But I have to agree to the fact that they have still kept the basics intact. Then again not everyday do you apply complex filters and tools. GIMP is a very good open source alternative For people who use GIMP and wishes it to be more photoshopy….there is an interface that mimics the exact menu systems and operation of photoshop. Its called gimpshop(www.gimpshop.com) If anyone has got any questions regarding which softwares to use for specific type of work/project, feel free to to get in touch with me blacklump@gmail.com

  • Ashleigh

    gravatarSep 6, 2009
    12:48 pm

    One of the best editors I’ve ever used has to be PhotoImpression 4. It’s easy to use and very good, and I use it for all my edits. If you would like to see them, or have me make you one, add my msn on LIVE MESSENGER. I will rarely reply to hotmail (although there now is a higher chance of me replying as I sort my mail almost everyday). Ashleiigh.Ox@hotmail.com

  • charles kafka

    gravatarSep 8, 2009
    3:19 pm

    can’t believe you left out picasa 3 by google. i have photoshop light, and i use google-picasa love the way they both handle pixels.

  • yumchum

    gravatarSep 8, 2009
    4:08 pm

    i happily use ms paint and if i had it i would probably use gimp

  • Dien

    gravatarSep 8, 2009
    7:27 pm

    I have tried many photo resizer and some makes your photos smaller, some others like to cut outside parts of the photos. But the king of all is webresizer.com. It’s done directly online and free. Your photos will look just like the original in size and colour but 50% to 90% less bytes.

  • alan

    gravatarSep 24, 2009
    7:19 am

    A couple of things I’d like to know. How big should your hard drive be to hold photoshop AND be able to use a web-based editing program that will operate quickly?

    Another thing I would like to know is how many comments here are based on professional reasons, i.e., cost/benefit ratio because you MUST use an editor for your JOB versus those who WANT to use an editor for their art. Being a ‘professional’ doesn’t necessarily mean being better; it just means you’re doing it for a living. In fact, the more ‘professional’ you need to be, the more likely your work will fade into the sunset–since its purpose is time bound–i.e., for a client assignment.

  • Lena

    gravatarOct 5, 2009
    9:22 pm

    I need a yes or no answer because I want to know for sure if gimp is worth downloading in place of photoshop…does it have all the same features?

  • bills_eye_view

    gravatarOct 7, 2009
    5:54 pm

    I love Paint.NET. It’s a Microsoft program. It was developed to replace “paintbrush” in Windows, but this hasn’t happened. When you edit photos and upload them to sites such as Flickr, it shows the properties. Some “photo shop” software won’t do this.

  • Sherry-go-bucks

    gravatarOct 8, 2009
    11:05 am

    I just opened up the Photoshop elements 7 that I bought a few months ago. I was excited to have it, and looked forward to fun projects. I’m a hobbyist, like to switch faces, add people to photos, modify logos for fun: fliers, cardmaking etc. 1. When I try to use Editor I keep getting “The program isn’t working, Windows is looking for a solution” or some such words. I tried the suggestion from the Adobe forum to hold Ctrl-Alt-Shft while clicking editor but it didn’t work. I don’t need the aggravation and will return it today. 2. The constant ads on the welcome screen for buying PSE 8 are annoying. 3.I joined the free PS membership, but when I click on some of the tutorials, it’s only for the upgraded $50 memb. 4. A complete manual costs about $45. I’ll try some of the freebies listed.

  • Laura Barber

    gravatarOct 8, 2009
    6:52 pm

    I am not an expert but am very disappointed in picasa. When they added their newest version 3.5 the program went crazy for a lot of people. Right now, my edited photos are inaccessible from Picasa. There is no real support that I see and it is very frustrating. I am exploring options that will have support and be able to do photo editing….will check out what has been mentioned….I’d recommend avoiding picasa…

  • Scott

    gravatarOct 17, 2009
    12:11 pm

    I enjoy using GIMP. It has layers, and I see it as a great alternative.

  • Johnson

    gravatarOct 18, 2009
    7:22 am

    What program can I use to reproduce and design custom decals for model cars? Thanks.

  • GDuffin

    gravatarOct 29, 2009
    10:53 pm

    Gimp is great but like all the high end editors takes time to learn. Irfanview is great for bulk processing such as resizing to a common height or width. Thanks for all the input!

  • madison

    gravatarOct 30, 2009
    12:02 pm

    wow thanks for this list. very useful. i’m a huge fan of web based applications. now i’ll just have to find time to try them all out! haha. thanks again :)

  • madison

    gravatarOct 30, 2009
    12:31 pm

    btw which of these allows you to paste a screenshot capture right onto the editing screen? :)

  • guddu

    gravatarNov 8, 2009
    10:45 am

    Nice pictures buddy… How can I create animated 3D cartoons using any picture editing tools?

  • guddu

    gravatarNov 8, 2009
    10:50 am

    Nice pictures buddy–¦ How can I create animated 3D cartoons using any picture editing tools?

  • Gina.

    gravatarNov 9, 2009
    6:20 pm

    Sumopaint.com is good, requires download, but you can still use it without.

  • Kelsey

    gravatarNov 16, 2009
    1:14 pm


    This website may not be good for cropping, or colors, or layers, but it has a TON of very interesting and creative effects, that I’m sure you would love.

  • DeeDee1Whoa

    gravatarNov 30, 2009
    9:36 am

    My favorite still stays the old good Photoshop…

    And also, you always have the Portable versions. ;)

  • Cookies

    gravatarNov 30, 2009
    5:29 pm

    I Need A Website or anything That works Like PicNik… So Far PicNik is the best :S But It is Too Expensive

  • Guest

    gravatarDec 2, 2009
    8:52 pm

    Does anyone know of a free photoshop that will let you paste your face onto someone elses and make it look real?

  • Jeremy

    gravatarDec 10, 2009
    9:21 am

    Photofiltre is my pick for the best photo editing software. I use it for all my editing needs, to make DVD/CD cover, clean up scanned documents/photos, and for all my web site needs. AND BEST OF ALL IT IS FREE and has most of the features of Photoshop in a better interface. Well maybe not all the advanced features you would never use anyway!

  • celebritynews

    gravatarDec 10, 2009
    10:41 pm

    I tried to find a photo editing program to merge a photo into another one. I tried Paint.net and it did the job, I also find it very good for many tasks that you can do with photoshop. It has layers which is powerful when editing and manipulating photo. The best part of course it’s free to download. Regards, Jack K.

  • William Muncrief

    gravatarDec 16, 2009
    1:04 pm

    You get what you pay for. Free has limitations in the agreement with the online service that we are all expected to understand. Most services expressly forbid the use of their services for any commercial activity. Photoshop is one of the choice tools of professionals and rightfully so if it is in the right hands. Photoshop is designed for professional work that can be commercial.

  • Aaron

    gravatarJan 8, 2010
    11:36 am

    Photoshop is designed for full-time professionals, not part-timers or hobbyists. That’s why it’s so feature loaded.

  • Prof designer

    gravatarJan 14, 2010
    9:59 am

    I’m a professional designer, been using Photoshop since the early days, have won awards for my images, and I’d be happy to go toe-to-toe with any of you “professional” Photoshop users out there. Yes, Photoshop is good, but Chanpory Rith hits it on the head. A good designer needs alternatives to Photoshop which is expensive and bloated. (In reality, most professional photoshop users actually use only a small set of tools that they have mastered, and the rest are rarely used.) Mr. Rith is not “whining”, he is making an excellent point–most of the graphic design work we do could be done with light, portable software (preferably web-based for those of us who travel a lot and use multiple operating systems).

    What I have always found frustrating about my colleagues in this industry is their refusal to look forward and be open minded about change. Instead they tend to get elitist and hide behind their status (note the tone of posts, “if you don’t like Photoshop, you must be an idiot or worse, a hobbyist”). In reality, my fellow designers act a lot like sheep, all following each other. When I started in this business, the old guard sneered at us youngsters who did our design work on desktop computers (real designers used an Xacto knife and rubber cement). Sure there was awful stuff being produced with “hacks with Macs”, but very quickly the old guard was all replaced, as the industry changed without them, and design actually got better.

    There is a reason that almost all the innovation in the graphic design industry is now coming from 17 year olds who haven’t learned how to hide behind their elitism. Some of the posters on this site would do well to read “The Emperor’s New Clothes”.

  • PortraitGal

    gravatarJan 21, 2010
    8:00 am

    Yes!!! well said!!! I’ve read through these comments and found myself getting more angry with each snobby, snarky, arrogant, elitist comment that was made.

    Today’s hobbyist may well be tomorrow’s award winning photographer that puts YOUR work to shame, and just MAYBE they will be using a program that you are sneering at.

    GET OVER YOURSELF! sheesh! I do BOTH professional AND hobby pictures, and as a single mom, I have neither the time NOR the money to spend on bloated software, to do what can be done with a few clicks in today’s much more streamlined programs. The KISS principle (KEEP IT SIMPLE, STUPID!) is just as applicable with photography as it is with most anything else.

    I have to wonder, as well, why a GOOD photographer would even NEED all the extra fixits for your picture — is your photography really so bad that you need that much help? I’ve seen pictures taken by so-called amateurs that make many professional pictures look like a simple point and shoot in comparison.

    One other point…not everyone who is a fantastic photographer is also a computer geek. So please stop with the looking down your nose at people who prefer to spend their time taking awesome photos than trying to figure out complicated software.

    just my two cents worth…elitists, BAH! HUMBUG!

  • Nigel Johnson

    gravatarJan 22, 2010
    7:30 am

    The only one that suited me was Picnik, which has the best cropping tool out of the ten.

  • Karen

    gravatarJan 23, 2010
    5:40 pm

    Sooooooooooooo, after reading all of this stuff, and trying to see what inexpensive or free program to use for Mac instead of photoshop (for my amateur needs), I have come to: 1) Photofilter or 2) Photoshop Elements or 3)Pixlmator My current love is making Youtube videos, but I am using my ppt program to build the slide show – drastic limitations for manipulating photos. I am leaning towards PS Elements unless someone can enlighten me otherwise. Thanks

  • Bucka

    gravatarJan 24, 2010
    1:45 am

    Picnik looks as ugly as Phixr though…

    And you can see that Gimp users are rather stupid. They don’t know that this article is about online solutions. Besides that, Gimp is even worse than MS Paint at least the interface.

  • David Bryce Scott

    gravatarFeb 2, 2010
    2:18 pm

    What about Pixlr? You forgot what is proboly the best online photo editor Iv’e ever used. (So far)

  • Friz

    gravatarFeb 2, 2010
    5:12 pm

    Sumopaint.com is one i have used quite abit. Very similar to photoshop

  • Gord

    gravatarFeb 14, 2010
    10:13 am

    Photoshop is a waste of time and money, threw the disk in the garbage when I found out for myself that PhotoImpact is a truly amazing program for the price. Even now, I rarely use PhotoImpact for creating digital artwork. I mostly use Bryce 6.1. What a sweet program that one is. I now use PhotoImpact only for post-processing, after creating artwork in 3D.

  • Mysti

    gravatarMar 4, 2010
    8:55 pm

    I’ve read all these comments, because, I too (like Karen on Jan 23, 2010) wanted to see what the best free web-based photo editor was out there. About halfway through reading the comments, I realized most of these comments were written almost 2 YEARS ago because the article itself was from May 2008. Think about how much changes in the computer and software world in 2 years? At this time the iPhone had only been out for a year! Can you imagine how many Windows updates and itunes downloads there have been since then? It’s possible Photoshop is totally different now! Why did some of these people get so upset over some of the comments?

    Why get all worked up over people’s attitudes about Photoshop (whether elitest or calm, for or against) when they no longer hold water since they are so old? I used to use GIMP, but stopped due to flaws and bugs in the software and went on to others. And besides, as someone else noted, this is about WEB-BASED software. So most of these suggestions are moot.

    I guess my point is…don’t get all angry because people 2 years ago had opinions about the way software was designed back then! I’m going to pay attention to the most relevant comments and suggestions which I feel are dated within the last 4 to 6 months and possibly disregard the article altogether.

  • Adrian

    gravatarMar 11, 2010
    1:42 am

    I have just scanned in around 7,500 35mm slides from years long past. The new images all look dull and lifeless. Now I can use Photoshop or any one of dozens of other packages to edit them one at a time – and I probably will for a selected few, but not all 7500. So why can’t I just group them into a dozen types (e.g. snow scenes, beach scenes, landscape, city buildings, portraits, cars, interiors, backlit, etc.) then do a bulk fix on each group. Are there any packages around that will do this simply?

  • ghillie suit

    gravatarMar 14, 2010
    10:35 pm

    Thanks for this list. I have a bunch of photos I need to fix up

  • obob

    gravatarMar 17, 2010
    4:53 pm

    GIMP is da best it beats any other program try it at http://www.gimp.org/


    gravatarMar 26, 2010
    1:22 pm


  • ZJoey X

    gravatarApr 10, 2010
    9:28 pm

    what design program let me take a pic of my car and redesign it in a 3d and change it look and color like adding a bodykit

  • Amanda

    gravatarApr 11, 2010
    12:54 am

    Don’t know if this has been asked but can gimp or any other free program use photoshop brushes? (or are they able to store brushes that you make?) Thanks

  • South Florida Web Studio

    gravatarApr 15, 2010
    2:14 pm

    Here at SoFla Web Studio we use picasa for quick photos edits. Its great for the simple stuff and quick edits. Although it is not free, we still have an old copy of ACDSee (I think version 5) here that we use for some simple batch processing tasks, like renaming, resizing, etc…

  • Prasana

    gravatarApr 18, 2010
    7:54 pm

    uh guys . I’m pretty much new. What I need is a a program on the web with Lots and lots of Filters with click-use technology. Anyone got any bright ideas? I’ve used picnik. Need something else with wider filter options

  • I hate Crapples

    gravatarApr 20, 2010
    8:20 pm

    Efrain, Best you get rid of the crapbook and get a decent platform. You wanted suggestions!

  • Ranbir

    gravatarMay 9, 2010
    7:49 am

    Great post.. i find really difficult to use photo shop… hope these sites ease my work

  • Tina

    gravatarMay 12, 2010
    1:56 am

    I LOVE photoshop! The customizable actions are awesome. The ability to make a watermark brush is a necessity for the massive number of photos I edit. Couldn’t live without layers. It’s perfect for what I do!! I have yet to find anything that can do everything that Photoshop can, especially as a professional designer. Photoshop Elements is always a great, cheaper, more user friendly alternative to the Extended CS versions. You can pick it up at any Wal-mart, Staples, Best-Buy, etc for under $100.

  • Tiffany

    gravatarMay 14, 2010
    12:09 pm

    how about a free design program for more than just photos? what if i want to design posters for print, etc.? any suggestions for me, by chance? :) i can’t fathom paying $2k for something i would only need on occasion; it just won’t pay for itself. not to mention the fact that i haven’t used photoshop in about 6 years, so i surely would need to relearn it in entirety.

  • Essam

    gravatarMay 24, 2010
    11:21 pm

    Thank You,What about pixlr.com? I think it is great! any way i included an direct link to it in my World wide home page (www.WorldFavo.com). Thank You

  • Cristina

    gravatarJun 6, 2010
    5:51 am

    I’ve used Photoscape on Windows and it is easy and friendly to use. Now I’ve got to find one like that for MAC (not too happy with Gimp).

  • Syed Asjed Ali Shah

    gravatarJun 23, 2010
    6:58 pm

    i am a great photo gapher . i scerch job on internet to internet

  • Syed Asjed Ali Shah

    gravatarJun 23, 2010
    7:07 pm

    i am aphoto grapher . i scerch a job on internet to internet

  • Photo Editing

    gravatarJun 26, 2010
    3:30 am

    They don’t have a large number of options like Photoshop, i like your post but your comparison is not acceptable. Thanks for the nice post.

  • Hossein

    gravatarJul 1, 2010
    10:57 pm

    C4A(Convert4All) was born on January 2010.

    The idea was provide a global online converter tools to convert any thing you think :D .

    C4A goal is to provide for you simple converts more easy; more user friendly and more easy to access.

    You don’t need download software for simple convert any more.

    C4A start up with only string convert methods but now it support 5 kind of converts:

    1. Currency
    2. String
    3. Image Editor
    4. Time and Date
    5. Documents
  • hater

    gravatarJul 2, 2010
    1:51 am

    I can’t say how frustrated i got when i tried to use Gimp here at work since i only have Photoshop at home. Gimp is horrible.. really really horrible! I’t made more harm then good on my picture.. I ended up using Paint and it worked out perfect.


  • Avio karte

    gravatarJul 9, 2010
    2:35 am

    I reinstalled my laptop and cant find my key so now I am looking for photoshop alternative. Hopefully one of these programs will work. Thanks!

  • LS Shiny

    gravatarJul 9, 2010
    7:47 am

    All the Photoshop fanatics that are adding the critical comments toward the people who have chosen to seek alternative solutions to a grossly overweight product, like Microsoft products, are probably the same ones who spent all that money on the software, and then on a class to learn how to use it and are like the US government folks who don’t vote for their pay increases, but also don’t bring up the idea of voting them down, or even recommend that they donate their time because they’re just mad that they either didn’t know about the freeware alternatives, or were too lazy to look for them and now they’re out all that money, but they can’t go back because like when you buy a Harley Hog, it doesn’t stop there (there is NO substitute for Harley though), you have to get the clothes, etcetera. The point here, LET’S GET BACK TO BASICS!!! if there is a good or even better alternative, don’t be such a weenie and try to shut it down. Gimp IS a great alternative, and it’s simple to use. Like OpenOffice, it offers a no cost alternative to the BS-Infested MS Office. Who else besides Microsoft would go and change a successful product like they did on 2007, so dramatically, that many people would have to get retrained? It was so ridiculous! People want the alternatives and want software companies to take notice, because when they get too big like Microsoft, they tend to think they know what EVERY user wants more than the user themselves. So go back to your hole, and stop worrying about us freeware junkies, you still get to keep your albatross, and your little sharp tidbits of wisdom will be better spent with your friend at the watercooler of your top-heavy corporations.

  • Bam

    gravatarJul 25, 2010
    9:35 pm

    Well I use a whole range of editing softwares. I try to certain things from each because not one has everything I want or need. I use: Photoshop Elements (came with this graphic tablet) GIMP (free) Paint.net (free) Picasa (free) Photoscape (free) Pixelmator (Paid)

    Though it is tedious to move back and forth at times. But its close enough to what i might get in photoshop and then some more. Took a while to learn how to use everything though :P If I could have photoshop it wouldnt be much of a difference in my mind but less going back and fourth though XD

    If you actually want your pictures to look a bit pro. Then take the time and try downloading a few free sofwares and its actually quite easy :)

    — Bam

  • Priscilla

    gravatarAug 4, 2010
    2:15 am

    I am looking for a program which would give me like a falling Danelion Seeds effect. I saw it on a photo and asked the photogrpher to share the info but no response. Can you help? BTW,I prefer the web based program better than the ones which I have to download. Thanks for your help!