For the longest time, Adobe Photoshop has been the be all and end all in the world of image editing software. However, over the last few years this paradigm is starting to shift. It’s no longer a Photoshop centric universe, as photographers, graphic designers, and digital artists are beginning to realize that they have other tools at their disposal when it comes to plying their craft.
Here is a list of what we feel are the top 4 image editing programs for 2016.
Maybe this has happened to you; you need a specific sort of image and after spending hours on end looking for it online your finally find it. Your excitement quickly turns to disappointment, however, as you realize that this otherwise ideal image is flawed thanks to a watermark, logo, or some other unwanted text or graphics.
Getting rid of these undesirable elements in other image editing programs can be difficult, time consuming, and even downright impossible. In contrast, InPaint has been specifically designed to make eliminating these eyesores easy and intuitive.
InPaint is not just great for eliminating annoying eyesores from photos and images you’ve sourced online. You can also use InPaint to get rid of tourists, photo bombers, and other uninvited stand ins from your own personal photos. Aside from making eliminating visual elements a snap, InPaint also has really easy to use facial retouching tools; smoothing out blemishes and wrinkles with this program is a lot easier than with other digital photo editors.
Another high quality image editor that’s a great choice for the photographer who has little experience in the digital realm but still wants a high quality photo editor is Inpixio Maximizer. As its name would suggest, the focus of Inpixio Maximizer is on being able to zoom in up to 1000% with very little drop in image clarity. For the photographer who simply wants to be able to easily resize and format her photos and can live without all of the other bells and whistles that come with most graphics editing programs, Inpixio Maximizer is worth having a look at.
ON1 Photo 10
If you already have some experience with digital photo and editing, you may have already heard the name “ON1”. For years this company produced different plug-ins for Photoshop. A few years ago the company decided to bundle these different features together in a single app of their own, and their latest version is the best all round photo editing suite that they’ve come out with yet.
Probably the biggest appeal of ON1 Photo 10 is its incredible presets that can then be fine tuned to a high degree of precision. One area where it still lags behind Photoshop, however, is in its manual editing functions. Thus, although ON1 Photo 10 really is a great tool for photographers who want to dump all of their photos into a program where they can then quickly punch them up and enhance them with presets and a few edits, it’s not such a great option for designers and artists who want to be able to move objects around, mash things up and experiment.
If ON1 Photo 10 is a superb editing tool for photographers but has little to offer to design nerds, illustrators, and experimental artists, on the other side of the spectrum there is the raster graphics editor Krita. Krita isn’t the place where you want to go if you’re a photographer looking to touch up your prints. However, if you’re a creative type who loves to spend hours experimenting with different shapes, colors, and textures and you haven’t gotten your hands on Krita yet then you are really missing out.
Krita is best probably best described as a digital painting app. It has 100 amazing brush presets, all of which are incredibly responsive to pressure, release, and other tactile input. It also makes it easy to smudge, cross hatch, spray, chalk, and otherwise manipulate the lines and shapes on the screen in very expressive ways. The results are very “realistic” in the sense that when people who are unfamiliar with Krita are shown a piece that was rendered with the program they find it hard to believe that what they’re seeing is actually a piece of digital art and not a real painting.
Krita has also found a huge fan base among content creators in the web based DIY Anime and Manga scenes. It’s worth taking a gander through social media using the hashtag #krita to see the amazing work that artists using this app are creating across a wide range of genres and styles.
The best thing about krita is that it’s open sourced. It receives all of its funding from a very successful ongoing kickstarter campaign, and new iterations are coming out all the time. The word ‘Krita’ means ‘crayon’ in Swedish.