Graphics Editing

In undergrad at DAAP I had all the graphics programs one could wish for, all at cheap student pricing.  I have many of these programs on my work computer now (I work at a law firm but we often use them for graphics for trial and other hearing exhibits), but I do not have them on my mac at home. Even without the likes of Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, AutoCAD, and 3D Studio Max at my fingertips (at least not for a few thousand dollars), a lot of free or almost free programs have popped up on the internet in recent years.

I sometimes use my mac iPhoto software for photo editing, but its capabilities are extremely limited.  I also use Snagit for some layouts, but again, compared to Adobe Illustrator, it is very limited.  I have tried Gimp, an Adobe Photoshop-like counterpart you can download for free – it has gotten some decent reviews from people as well, but so far I have been slow to catch on to it.  So far my favorite photo editing software I have found online is Google Picnik.  You run the program by signing in from your web browser, and like Flickr, you can keep a library of your photos on the site.  It is a bit slow if you have slow internet since it is a website rather than an application on your hard drive, but overall, I think it’s pretty good.  You can get limited capabilities for free, or if you want the full program it’s about $25 for a year.

I admit, I am a sucker for all the filters on Photoshop and Picnik.  I suppose in the absence of a really great camera, spicing things up with some fun effects is about as good as it’ll get for me at the moment.  Hopefully I’ll snag a decent digital SLR this year some time – these point and shoot compact digital cameras just aren’t the same.

I have recruited my buddy Enzo the sun conure to show you some of the effects – he is very colorful, so I always have fun with photographs of him on Picnik.  What about you? Do you have any free or almost free graphics programs that you use often?


One thought on “Graphics Editing

  1. Pingback: Room Planning: 3D Modeling with Google Sketchup. |

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