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Free Photo Editing Software to Check Out

I'm a firm believer in getting one's camera settings and photo taking spot right in the first place.  But even then, we have to so some photo editing. Lightening, cropping and resizing are some the most common tasks to do before the picture can be uploaded to online stores.  Others include easy addition of some sort of watermark (image authoring).

I personally like to use Adobe Photoshop Elements which isn't expensive compared to the full Adobe Photoshop.  But starving artists out there might prefer totally free programs and beadaholics naturally rather spend the money on beads.  There are tons of free photo-editing software out there. So here is a short list of my favorites to help out budding jewelry artisans.

Downloadable Programs
Doris Price, a reader and the designer behind sent me this tip about Photoscape. She said, "It's soooo easy to use.  I used some of the Frames for photos from it on my jewelry pics on Etsy."  You can also use the combining function to make a horizontal banner of some pictures.

A little more challenging to use and similar to Photoshop is Gimp . It is an open source program also used by Wikipedia. It is available in several languages and for different operating systems.

Gimp for Windows

Online Photo Editors
PicMonkey is the brainchild of some former PicNik engineers.  The free version allows you to upload a photograph to do the most common tasks most jewelry artisans need to do. This one is a standout because of its absolute ease of use.  Not very techie?  This one is for you!

FotoFlexer also covers the common tasks but can do a whole lot more.  It got a mention here because it makes accessing your photo albums on Flickr, Picasa, Facebook, Photobucket etc easier.

I also like Pixlr which makes photo editing fun! Very easy to use too. There are several options. Pixlr Express is the most useful for busy jewelry artisans. You can make the common adjustments :

The wonderful range of fonts makes image authoring easy and cool :

Pixlr Editor is more like Photoshop with a tool bar.  Pixlr-o-matic is great for avatars as you can either take a webcam shot or upload from your computer and apply effects a la Instagram.  They also provide mobile apps although I haven't yet tried those.

Before You Go:
Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
Jewelry Making Tips - Jewelry Business Tips


  1. Wow, thanks for this GREAT article....goodness knows, we're always looking for something new in the photo editing corner-lol....
    Wondering though, why you didn't mention Picassa 3, that's what I've been using for last few years, I like it cause it's easy....I'm gonna check out some of these others though, so thanks!

  2. Thanks for the alternates, Pearl. I have been using PicMonkey and I totally agree it is low-tech... if I can figure it out, ANYONE can LOL.

  3. I use a combination of my iPhoto, Gimp, FotoFuze and I just discovered iPiccy and LOVE it!

  4. Great links Pearl. Thank you.

    There is also a great program by Serif (UK) called Photo Plus. For the longest time I had this free starter edition and recently upgraded...but I could have stuck with the free version.

  5. Thanks everyone for sharing your favorites. Even more to check out now!

  6. I have a old version of photoshop the hubs bought years ago. But I got LightRoom recently and love the program. Easy to use, and well worth the money.

  7. I've heard of Lightroom. Will have to check it out!

  8. Hmm, looks like I have some exploring to do. I have a freebee photo editor but it is minimalistic at best and doesn't do a lot of things . . . well, more like it doesn't do much of anything.

  9. Oh great tips Pearl! Going to check some of these out!


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