A well-edited photograph triggers curiosity. Product photos eliminates the need to store actual products for an online entrepreneur. A family album of well-retouched images stimulates deep senses and can bring tears of joys years after it was made. Well-preserved event photos can generate lots of excitement and intense feelings among kids and adults many years after they were taken.
The work of a photo editing professional speaks itself. You can tell the difference between a good quality work and a bad one just by having a glance. A photo editor must look at the nuances of dealing with a wide array of attributes that creates a really timeless piece of art.
Photoshop rules the world of rastor-based photo editing marketplace. A budding image artist must respond to the ever-growing clout of Adobe suites of photo editing tools and software sooner or later to succeed and excel in jobs. Non-professionals contend with the fact that they only need a very small fraction of what is considered professional.
My Personal Experiences
Personally, I have worked with Photoshop and many other similar software. Let me admit the fact. Barring a very few options, Photoshop has virtually no alternatives. Nevertheless, it is also a fact that not many people need loads of features that mark the cornerstone of this powerhouse of image editing software.
Why do you need an alternative to Photoshop? It is price, obviously. Also, there is a steep learning curve involved. Sometimes, you really don’t require plethora of fine-grained, yet confusing, options that this software comes with. For example, you might just want to tweak a little, such as to change backgrounds or add a dash of colors here and there, to enable you to share stuffs on social media.
Right from the house of Adobe
If it is price, you have a couple of options right from Adobe; yes, the company behind this spectacular software. To start with, it is absolutely free to download an older version of CS2 from the official website of Adobe. Though it is not supported and a bit outdated, it will definitely give you a taste of what Photoshop is composed of.
Another options right from Adobe is Lightroom CC, which is quite a standard for photographers for all post-processing requirements. Photoshop Express is yet another option for smartphone users who like to do usual stuffs, such as cropping, and fixing red eye, all the time for social media sharing needs.
Open-Source and Inexpensive Alternatives
I am afraid to say it again there is not many alternatives to Photoshop. If one open-source project that comes at par with this powerhouse of photo editing tool, it is GIMP. Though it may not look as fancy as its rival, it offers almost all the functionalities that Photoshop is known for.
If you are rather interested in vector-based editing, then you have yet another open-source project right at your hand. Inkscape, often regarded as a sister project of GIMP, can offer a wide variety of vector graphics tools for professionals as well as non-professionals.
Photopea, available online, shows a great similarity with Photoshop and is often touted as its clone. Pixelmator, a little tone-down version, is another good alternative, but costs money. Another software that you can buy at a much cheaper price is PicMonkey, which makes it very simple to do most photo-editing jobs for professionals.
Last in this category is IrfanView, which can be a good replacement for Lightroom, letting you edit photos in batches, and also tag and organize them.
Pixlr is a great app that lets you do a wide variety of image editing work. It is completely free and available online. There is no need to download.
Another very popular editor in this category is Canva, which is free for limited use and allows you to not just edit photos, but print them and post them on social media as well.
Use your Smartphone
For highly simplified photo retouching jobs, you never need a very powerful software or professional service. A multitude of smartphone apps exist, helping you do most sundry photo editing jobs, such as background change, cropping, and beautifying objects, quite easily.
Popular among these are Snapseed, Fotor, and Photoscape, which use filters to create stunning results.
If you are looking for simple interface for your desktop machine, then you have a couple of good options as well. Paint.Net can do a lot more than MS Paint and helps motivate kids choose a career in image designing.
For smaller kids, SumoPaint is just good enough to let them draw and paint. Another good option in this category is Pablo, which is not so powerful but does all normal photo editing tasks.
Call for a Professional Service
Save yourself a lot of time in learning a new software or doing stuffs yourself with professional photo editing and image retouching services available right at your doorstep. These services exist for businesses to help outsource, cut cost and scale up with no extra headaches.
While Fiverr offers businesses a marketplace to grab expert photo retouchers at very low prices, Tucia can help even individuals get professional services intuitively with their state-of-the-art online tools and services.
For flawless and impeccable photo retouching jobs, Pixel Z has emerged as quite a market standard. Included in this line of professional photo retouchers is PicsRetouch.com, which has helped many businesses scale up with its humble presence, offering a perfect combination of cutting-edge solutions and throwaway prices.