Curated by: Luigi Canali De Rossi

Monday, February 23, 2009

Free Picture Editing Software: Best Downloadable Image Editors - Mini-Guide

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Do you need to edit images on your computer? In this mini-guide I have hand-picked the best free picture editing software available out there.


As you probably know, there are already many web-based image editors that let you edit your pics directly from your browser window. But what if you don't have an internet connection at your disposal?

In this mini-guide I have hand-picked the best downloadable free picture editing programs. And what is best, some of these image editing tools are cross-platform, making them available for PCs, Macs and Linux computers.


Free Picture Editing Programs

  1. GIMP

    GIMP is a powerful free picture editing software released under GNU license. You can use GIMP to retouch your photos, create logos for your website, author your images, and much more. GIMP comes packed with advanced features like filters, layers, and everything you use in professional software like Adobe Photoshop. Available for Windows, Mac Os X, Linux, and Solaris.

  2. GIMPshop

    GIMPshop is a modified version of the popular open-source picture editing software GIMP. Similarly released under the GPL license, GIMPshop is a valuable alternative to a more complex solution like Photoshop. In fact, GIMPshop modifies the layout structure of your images to closely match the popular Adobe software interface. It works on Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux.

  3. Phantasmagoria

    Phantasmagoria is a free Java-based image editor that runs on Windows, Mac Os X and Linux. It supports a wide range of image formats, and lets you easily edit and improve your images with a lot of effects. You can create graphics, including textures and highly-stylized text and, when you are done, you can export your pictures to Flickr.

  4. ImageMagick

    ImageMagick is a free utility for converting, editing, and composing images. ImageMagick can batch convert all of your images in a matter of seconds, without having to manually process them in Photoshop, or another image editor. Besides changing file format, you can also flip, mirror, rotate, scale, adjust colors, apply effects, draw text and lines. Available for Windows, Mac Os X and Linux.

  5. PhotoFiltre

    PhotoFiltre is a free image editor software that helps you to edit and retouch your photos. PhotoFiltre has its main strength in its easiness of use. Sharpen, add brightness, contrast or crop your images is as easy as pressing a button. Very good for quick tasks where you don't need a more professional solution. Windows only.

  6. Paint.NET

    Paint.NET is a free image editing software for Windows machines. Originally intended as a free replacement for the Microsoft Paint software, Paint.NET is a complete solution whose features include support for layers, unlimited undo, special effects, and much more. Available in several languages.

  7. FastStone Image Viewer

    FastStone Image Viewer is a free image browser, converter and editor. Its features include image viewing, management, comparison, red-eye removal, emailing, resizing, cropping and color adjustments. The software also provides access to EXIF information, and supports all major graphic formats and popular digital camera RAW formats. Windows only.

  8. ActivePixels

    Active Pixels is a picture editor for Windows that lets you edit all of your pictures for free. Its interface reminds of Adobe Photoshop, and Active Pixels has many advanced features like layers, effects, freehand selection, and everything you would get in a professional editor. the software supports more than 100 image formats, Photoshop's native PSD included.

  9. PhotoScape

    Photoscape is a free image editor for Windows that you can use to fix and enhance your photos. Its main features are resize, crop, adjust brightness, auto contrast, whitebalance, sharpen, blur, noise reduction, red eye removal, and a lot more. You can also batch edit your pictures, create animates GIFs, and capture your screen.

  10. Ript

    Ript is a free image editor for Windows that you can use to create collages and photo collection easily. After you install it and launch it, you can add all of your images to the "pile" and edit them by rotating, resizing, flipping and also by adding text to them. You can then arrange your images like you were really disposing them on a real table to watch them all at once and, when done, you can save, print or email your creation.

  11. Imgares

    Imgares is a Windows-only image editing software. To start editing pictures in batch mode, just drag&drop your selected images and choose what you want to do: you can resize and rotate your photos, add text, change light and contrast, and also create AVI slideshows. Free to download and use.

  12. Image Analyzer

    Image Analyzer is a free image editor for Windows that will give new life to your images. Just import an image any type of image and get access to basic editing features like resizing, brightness adjustment, red eye removal, or rotation. If you need more advanced features, Image Analyzer comes with additional plugins that you can install to fit your needs.

  13. photo Drop

    photo Drop is a Mac Os X image editing software that allows you to create automatic tasks to modify a folder of images with a simple drag&drop. In a matter of seconds you can resize your images, convert them to a new format, flip horizontally, vertically, crop, and even rotate them. The software is completely free.


Free Image Editing Utilities

  1. Free Digital Camera Enhancer

    Free Digital Camera Enhancer is a free downloadable image editor that lets you enhance and improve your digital images. Its easy-to-use interface makes it really simple to fix an image just by moving five sliders: balance, color, midtones, enhance details, and de-noiser. Plus, you can also batch your enhancements for all your pictures.

  2. Easy Thumbnails

    Easy Thumbnails is a free image editor that allows you to create thumbnails and scaled copies of your pictures. You can process your images individually, in groups, or in whole folders using a simple file selector and built-in image viewer. Just set height and width, and use slider controls to edit your images, rotate and adjust contrast, brightness, sharpness, and other attributes. For Windows machines only.

  3. Mobile Photo Enhancer

    Mobile Photo Enhancer is a Windows picture editing software that you can use to enhance your mobile phone pictures. You can edit and adjust JPEG compression artifacts, vignetting (darkening of the corners around the image), color reproduction, contrast, sharpness and noise. Images can be saved in JPEG, BMP or PNG formats. Free.

  4. Shrink O Matic

    Shrink O'Matic is an AIR based image editor that lets you resize your images easily. After you install it, all you have to do is select the new size of the output image, select the format among JPG, PNG and GIF format, and then choose the image that you want to resize. Free to use.

  5. Inkscape

    Inkscape is vector graphics editor, similar to Adobe Illustrator. The service is based on the W3C SVG file format. Inkscape supports Creative Commons metadata, and many advanced SVG features like markers, clones, alpha blending, etc. It is very easy to edit nodes, perform complex path operations, trace bitmaps, and much more. Inkscape is available for Windows, Mac Os X and Linux.

  6. Artweaver


    Artweaver is a free software for Windows (from XP on) that allows you to edit your photos. Artweaver is suitable either for beginners and advanced users, and it allows you to carry out all those standard tasks that you would expect from an image-editing program, like choosing a color gradient, cropping, and working with selection tools. The software also supports a variety of image formats like BMP, GIF, JPEG, PCX, TGA, TIFF, PNG and PSD (including layers).

  7. PhotoPlus Starter Edition


    PhotoPlus Starter Edition is a free downloadable software that you can use to edit your photos. PhotoPlus allows you to perform all basic image editing tasks like editing, cropping and adjusting levels, curves, brightness and contrast. You can work on images from most common files formats (such as JPG, BMP, GIF, PNG). The software is available for Windows XP SP2, Vista and Windows 7 operating systems.

  8. Photo! Editor

    Photo! Editor is a Windows software for editing photos that you can download for free. Photo! Editor manages all most common image formats and it allows you to perform all basic image editing tasks, such as resampling and cropping pictures. The software is also well-integrated with Windows Explorer, which allows you to work at a basic level with an image without even opening the software window itself.

  9. Picasa

    Picasa is the popular image editing software and online photo sharing service by Google. With Picasa, you can perform all common photo edition tasks, such as cropping, removing red-eye (automatic correction), eliminating scratches and blemishes mostly with a one-click operation. You can also use the built-in geotagging function that allows you to specify where your photos were taken and Picasa preserves all the EXIF data of your pictures, meaning that the software will recognize the camera model you used, the lens, the zoom level, etc.. Supported image formats include: JPEG, GIF, BMP and PSD. Picasa runs on all major operating systems like Windows (XP / Vista / 7), Mac (OS X 10.4.9 or higher) and Linux, though still in beta version.


Other Free Picture Editing Software

Originally prepared by for MasterNewMedia, and first published on February 23, 2009 as "Free Picture Editing Software: Best Downloadable Image Editors - Mini-Guide".

Robin Good -
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posted by Robin Good on Monday, February 23 2009, updated on Tuesday, May 5 2015

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