To create a brand of any sorts, whether that’s online or just in the traditional sense, you need to be able to produce high-quality images. Whether it’s designing a logo, producing social media images or designing an advertising board, every business needs to have the ability to design images.
Alternatively you could be a photographer or a graphic designer looking for the best value or highest quality software to suit your needs. The main one that comes to mind would be Adobe’s Photoshop, but that isn’t the only option out there. With that in mind, here are the 5 image editing software that we would recommend for your image and design needs.
Let’s get the obvious out of the way. Adobe Photoshop is the go-to image editing software for the majority of designers, and there is a reason for that, because it is probably the best and most reliable. Its interface, albeit complicated initially with its vast array of features, is very easy to get to grips with. What’s also great about photoshop is its versatility. Some software on this list are more geared towards photo editing rather than graphic design. Photoshop can do both, and does them both very well.
The only downside to Photoshop is probably the price when compared to other software. By itself, Photoshop is just under £20 a month (£19.97 to be exact) however, there are often plans available to get better value for money if you get other Adobe products alongside it. The platform also has frequent offers and package deals which is something to keep in mind.
The only free option on this list, Paint.net is an excellent alternative than the other paid options. It is simple, easy to access and use and has all the basic image editing tools you need. It has a nice interface which integrates perfectly with a windows set up making it easy to use alongside other programmes on your desktop. Whether it’s adding effects, filters, text or layers to your images, paint.net can do it, and all for absolutely free.
Another Adobe product, Lightroom, is also commonly used and has a lot to say for itself alongside its partner programme Photoshop. Like Photoshop, you’ll have to pay for Lightroom as part of a package/plan, sometimes alongside other Adobe software, but you can get it by itself. On its own it costs just under £10 a month (£9.98)
Lightroom focuses more on image editing rather than graphic design, meaning it is often used by photographers, but it also has a few additional touches worthy of note. For example, Lightroom allows greater freedom when organising images and even has a feature where you can share your work directly to social media.
Photolab is similar to Lightroom with its photo editing-centric focus. It performs very well as a whole, but its range of automatic corrections are among its main selling points. Their system is based on lab testing a variety of camera bodies and lenses allowing you to correct them depending on what equipment you have used in your photography. These corrections are even laid out and contained in set profiles which you can download where applicable to you. The application will even prompt you to do so when/if it detects certain factors which would lead it to believe that you need a specific tool. If you’re not a fan of the automatic correction the software still has lots of manual controls with which you can fine tune your images with.
The prices range from £115 to £179, and unlike Adobe which is based on a subscription plan, once you have purchased Photolab you will own it forever. It is with the bigger prices here that you’ll see artificial intelligence such as PRIME noise reduction included which, if you’re editing photographs, could come in very handy as it is designed to sharpen your images cleverly at the click of a button.
Corel Paintshop’s paid version works similarly to Photolab, with it having a set purchase-to-own price of £69.99. However, it is certainly closer to Phtotoshop in its set-up and aims. It is both a graphic design platform and an image editing software with a selection of nifty features to assist with both.
In its latest editions, Paintshop provides a number of “AI” tools to help you automatically enhance an image or a graphic to suit your needs, working similarly to the Photolab AI. This alongside its selection of selection, adjustment and correction tools, as well as its ability to save scripts as templates makes for a very well-rounded and value-for-money package.
If your business needs any support in editing images or producing graphics/assets, Laing Media has the tools and personnel to help, so don’t hesitate to get in touch.
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