Point. Click. Now what?
It’s now easier than ever for digital marketers and content creators to take photos and find images, but what can you do if the image isn’t quite right? From resizing tools to full-fledged Photoshop replacement, here’s a round up of tools to make you bend images to your will.
Most of these online image editing tools allow you to crop, rotate, adjust brightness, contrast and color, touch up and add filters to photos – it’s just a question of how they do it.
Picture Resizing Tools
One common task for marketers is resizing images to fit a blog post or another medium. While practically all of the image editors in our list let you do this, if all you need to do is change the size of the image, a simpler tool might be enough. Here are three to choose from.
Windows Image Resizer
Description: Back in the days of Windows XP, there was a PowerToy that resized images. This Windows Image Resizer allows Windows 7 users to fix the image size with a couple of clicks. Choose from a selection of presets (or set your own) and work with the original image or make a copy. It only takes a couple of seconds and the tool allows batch processing too.
Use this software if: you want to change the image size but don’t need to crop.
Description: ResizeIt is an image resizer for Macs which includes batch resizing functionality. You can save preset sizes and choose to keep or discard the aspect ratio.
Use this software if: you need a simple image resizer and you’re using a Mac.
Description: Pic Resize is not just a resizer. It also lets you crop, rotate, flip, add special effects and choose the image format. It’s a quick, effective tool, though the resizing options are limited.
Use this software if: you need access to picture resizing functionality when your desktop isn’t handy.
Image Editors for Your Phone
Taken a photo with your smartphone but not happy with the lighting or the look? Then consider installing one of these photo editing apps:
Photoshop Express Editor
Made by Adobe, Photoshop Express Editor provides a suite of free photo editing functions. If you normally use Photoshop you might find it limiting but for most other people it provides an easy way to make simple corrections to your photos. The best feature is the range of filters, and you can create an account for file storage and sharing functionality.
Use this software if: you want an application from a trusted brand without the hefty price tag of the real Photoshop.
One of the great things about Snapseed is that you can edit a photo taken on your phone, make the image pop and share it easily to social media. The fine tuning features are awesome, with the best part being the ‘details’ adjustment with the sharpen and structure tools. It’s got some great filters and overlays too.
Use this software if: you need to brighten and sharpen portraits and landscapes.
Cost: Free trial (Windows/Mac); free (Android/iOs)
Description: I have to admit to some bias here, because I LOVE Pixlr. Not only is it available on the phone, but it’s got three different web versions depending on the type of image editing you want to do. The Playful version has some fun filters while the Express version has a huge range of adjustments and effects, including seasonal ones like Valentine’s. And the Advanced version is more like Photoshop. This has rapidly become my favorite online image editor, because it’s so easy to use and has a ton of editing options.
Use this software if: You need to jazz up your photos fast and want a tool you can use anywhere.
Description: SumoPaint works like other tools in this roundup. One key difference is the option to start from scratch with a blank canvas, which could be useful if you just want to create simple background. The interface is similar to Photoshop but it has a few additional filters.
Use this software if: You need to create your own image online.
Cost: Free; Pro version $19
Cloud/Desktop Photo Editing Tools
Need a tool you can use on your computer? Try these options for desktop or cloud.
Description: The GNU Image Manipulation Program (gimp) is full featured,. In fact, it’s just like Photoshop, but it’s free. Gimp will do anything you want to do with a photo but it’s got a steep learning curve and may be too complex for someone wanting a quick photo fix.
Use this software if: you’re a photo perfectionist without a Photoshop budget.
Description: PicMonkey offers a wide range of photo-editing tools via an easy to understand interface. Its strong point is an excellent selection of filters, overlays, frames, texture and themes which you can apply with one click and then customize to taste.
Use this software if: you are bored with the usual filters.
Cost: Free (ad supported); with a premium version at $33 a year
Quick Picture Tools
Description: Quick Picture Tools is a suite of 12 online image editing tools. While the interface is a bit old-fashioned and the functions are limited it’s a simple program if you are trying to add any of the effects in the image above. One neat feature is the ability to use your own image to create a wallpaper calendar for your desktop.
Use this software if: You just need to add any of the simple effects in the image above such as combining images or creating a rounded corner effect.
More Image Editing Tools
The ten tools above are just a few of the options available. Here are some more alternatives.
- Aviary – once a beloved photo editing app, these days it’s available for developers to plugin to their apps. It works in the cloud, and on iOS, Android and Windows Phone 7.
- BeFunky is a free web tool which is also available for iOS and Android. It includes a wide range of photo filters, but you will have to upgrade to a paid monthly package to get more.
- Citrify is a Flash app that works on Windows, Mac and Linux. It has the standard tools and some unusual filters (including one that makes you look like the Incredible Hulk!)
- Dr Pic is a free web app with an old-fashioned interface.
- Editor Pho.to is a free web app that has some fun effects, including the ability to turn photos into caricatures.
- Fotor – available for iPhone, Android and Windows 8, this tool makes it easy to create a photo collage online.
- Gickr lets you create animated GIFs from uploaded photos.
- Glitterboo is a free web app that lets you add some sparkle to your uploaded photos.
- Lunapic – this web app supports a wide range of image formats and allows upload from and download to popular photo sharing sites. The array of photo customizations is pretty impressive.
- Picfull is a web app that keeps things simple with a limited array of photo effects.
- Pixenate is a web app with a standard range of photo editing tools.
- Splashup – available in the cloud and for Windows, this app integrates with photo sharing services and has a light version available for download.
Which image editing tools did we forget? Have you got any more to add to the list?