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List of Free Photo Editing Software

List started by: L-Lists
List contributors: L-Lists
Date started: 05 Aug 2014
Last updated: 05 Aug 2014
Keywords: photos, photography, photo editing, free software, open source


A list of free software for editing photos.

Row # Title Image Description
1 GIMP GIMP GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) originated in 1996, and has been regularly updated ever since. It has a steep learning curve, but is very powerful.
2 Paint.NET Paint.NET
Paint.NET was initially released in 2004, and can be used for photo editing or drawing (and is like a blend of Microsoft's Photo Editor and Paintbrush). It has an easy to use point-and-click interface, while still being quite powerful. It allows for image layers i.e. layers of images on transparent backgrounds which can be stacked on one another. Some of its special effects features include:
- Artistic conversions e.g. make a photo look like an ink sketch, pencil sketch, or oil painting.
- Blurs, noise, and distortions
- Mathematical renderings (Julia and Mandelbrot fractals)
- Softening, sharpening, and red-eye removal
3 ImageMagick ImageMagick
Free software for displaying, converting, and editing raster image files. Some of its features:
- Transformation options e.g. resize, rotate, crop, flip or trim an image.
- Transparency (render portions of an image invisible).
- Draw tools and text options
- Decorative borders/frames
- Image effects such as blur, sharpen, threshold, or tint.
- Animated GIF creation from a group of images.
- Layers/Composite: overlap one image over another.
- Pixel distortion (correct for, or induce)
- Shape morphology: extract features, describe shapes, and recognise patterns in images.
- Delineate image features: Canny edge detection, mean-shift, and Hough lines.
- Motion picture support: read and write the image formats commonly used in digital film work.
- Image calculator: apply mathematical expressions to an image or image channels.
- Discrete Fourier transform (forward or inverse implementation).
- Perceptual hash: map visually identical images to the same or similar hash (useful in image retrieval, authentication, indexing, copy detection, and digital watermarking).
- Image encryption (encipher or decipher an image) i.e. convert ordinary images into unintelligible gibberish and back again.
- Virtual pixel support: convenient access to pixels outside the image region.
- Large image support: read, process, or write mega-, giga-, or tera-pixel image sizes.
- Edit photos from an iOS device such as the iPhone or iPad.
4 PhotoScape PhotoScape
A free easy to use photo editing software, with features including:
- Editing tools e.g. resizing, brightness and colour adjustment, white balance, backlight correction, frames, balloons, mosaic mode, adding text, drawing pictures, cropping, filters, red eye removal, blooming, paint brush, clone stamp, effect brush
- Batch editing capabilities
- Photo merging and attaching
- Create animated GIFs from multiple photos
- A face searcher, which looks for similar faces on the internet
5 Photo Pos Pro Photo Pos Pro
A now freeware photo editor by Power of Software Ltd. Its features include:
- Support for a wide variety of image file types, including a password protected file type.
- Support for scanners and digital cameras
- Tools for precision repairs, such as removing scratches and unwanted details, enriching, emphasising, sharpening, and blurring etc.
- Graphics tools e.g. regular and custom brushes, tools for drawing lines and shapes, area filling; and support for transparency, textures, patterns, gradients etc.
- Rich text tools, image special effects, and image layers
- Advanced customisation which allows the user to make their own functions with the script tool.

Power of Software Ltd, also provide some other photo editing programs that are simpler than Photo Pos Pro, including:
- Pos Free Collage Maker
- Pos Panorama Pro
- Pos Free Photo Editor
- Photo Pos Lite
- Pos Free Red Eye Wiz
- Pos Multiple Image Printing Wizard
6 IrfanView IrfanView IrfanView describes itself as a graphic viewer. It is available for Windows 9x, ME, NT, 2000, XP, 2003 , 2008, Vista, Windows 7, and Windows 8. Its features include:
- A paint option for drawing lines, circles, arrows, straightening images etc.
- Batch conversion (with advanced image processing)
- Multimedia player
- Overlay text/image (e.g. watermarks)
- Effects such as sharpen, blur, Adobe 8BF, Filter Factory, Filters Unlimited, etc.
- Lossless JPG rotation
- A very simple installation process (i.e. only one EXE-File, no DLLs, no shareware messages like 'I Agree' or 'Evaluation expired')
7 PhotoFiltre PhotoFiltre
A free image retouching program, with features that include:
- A wide range of filters including standard filters (e.g. brightness, contrast, dyed, saturation, gamma correction) and also artistic filters (e.g. watercolour, pastels, Indian ink, pointillism, and puzzle effect)
- A variety of vectorial selections to limit the editing to a specific area of an image. The vectorial selections it allows include standard shapes (rectangle, ellipse, triangle, rhombus, rounded rectangle) and a more free form of a lasso or polygon.
- A wide variety of brushes
- Layered images
- PhotoMasque, which is a module for creating advanced effects of contour and transparency by using pre-set masks.
8 darktable darktable
An open source image editing software that retains the original image data until the final rendering at the export stage. It runs on GNU/Linux / GNOME, Mac OS X / macports and Solaris 11 / GNOME. Some of its features:
- Basic image operations: crop and rotate, base curve, exposure controls, highlight reconstruction, demosaic, white balance, and invert colours.
- Tone image operations: fill light, levels, tone curve, zone system, and tone mapping.
- Color image operations: overexposed, velvia, channel mixer, color contrast, color correction, color zones, color transfer, vibrance, and input/output/display color profile management.
- Correction modules: sharpen, equalizer, denoise (non-local means or bilateral filter), lens correction, spot removal, chromatic aberrations, raw denoise, and hot pixels.
- Effects/artistic image post-processing: watermark, framing, split toning, vignetting, soften, grain, highpass, lowpass, monochrome, lowlight vision, shadows and highlights, bloom, colorize, and graduated density.

Darktable's features are described in more detail here.
9 DigiKam DigiKam
digiKam describes itself as an advanced digital photo management application for Linux, Windows, and Mac-OSX. Its features include:
- Easy image importation from digital cameras
- Support for Exif, Makernotes, Iptc, and Xmp
- Metadata features such as tags, ratings, date and time, comments, photographers ID, and copyrights.
- Supports more than 300 proprietary RAW camera file formats.
- Quick image exporting options
- Lossless transformations with JPEG pictures
- Add GPS coordinates to images by synchronizing them with a GPX files
- Photo editing tools/options including: red eyes correction, brightness, contrast, gamma correction, hue, saturation, luminosity correction, colour balance, invert colours, colour auto-correction tools (normalise / equalise / auto-levels / stretch contrast), blur/sharpen, ratio-cropping with proportion aids and composing tools based on Fibonacci rules, rotation, flipping, and more.
10 CinePaint CinePaint
An open source computer program for painting and retouching bitmap frames of films. It is a fork of GIMP, with features that set it apart from its predecessor including a frame manager, onion skinning, and the ability to work with 16-bit and floating point pixels for high dynamic range (HDR) imaging. The software has been used in the movie industry, including (but not limited to) the following films: Little Nicky (2000), The Last Samurai (2003), League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003), and Spider-Man (2002).
11 F-Spot F-Spot
Free photo editing software with the following features:
- Supports 16 common files types, including JPEG, GIF, TIFF, RAW, and others.
- Tag photos for searching and grouping.
- View and export EXIF and XMP metadata.
- Rotate, crop, resize, and red eye correction.
- Colour adjustments, including brightness, contrast, hue, saturation, and temperature.
- Export to web, including photo sharing sites such as Flickr, 23, Picasa Web or SmugMug; and website photo galleries powered by Gallery or O.r.i.g.i.n.a.l.
12 GimPhoto GimPhoto is a modification of GIMP, with new menu, additional plugins and resources.
13 PixBuilder Studio PixBuilder Studio Free photo editing software for PC. Features:
- Image resizing, rotating, and crop functions.
- Brightness, contrast, colour balance, levels, hue/saturation, and colour fill.
- Auto-contrast and auto-levels.
- Effects e.g. blur, sharpen, dithering, etc
- Flexible selection management functions, including transparency masks, magic wand, various lasso tools, single column selection, colour range function, and gradient colour transition.
- Image layers and text layers
- Brush-based tools e.g. stamp tool, healing brush, replace colour tool, and more.
- Built-in shape drawing tools (rectangles, circles, and lines).
14 PhoXo PhoXo
A light-weight free image editing software, that is described on its website as being like a mini PhotoShop. Its features include: layers, undo, over 50 special effects, batch processing, and a wide variety of tools for selecting, cropping, painting, retouching, measuring and navigation. It allows the user to add text effects to an image, such as shadow text, ripple text, gradient colour text etc.
15 Anvsoft Funny Photo Maker Anvsoft Funny Photo Maker
A free image editor designed for making 'funny' photos. There are four special templates available, which are:
- Photo Frames, which takes one photo and makes it look like a photo within a photo (including slants, angles etc) e.g. taking a portrait photo, and placing it as an exhibition piece in a photo of an art gallery.
- Face Fun, which allows the user to take faces from photos, and add them to another photo e.g. placing a face on another person's head.
- Artistic 2D Templates, which allows the addition of effects such as rain, wax paint, oil paint, water colours, snow, etc.
- Collage, which allows multiple photos to be added to a collage.
16 G'MIC G'MIC G'MIC (GREYC's Magic for Image Computing) is an open and full-featured framework for processing generic images (2D, 3D, 3D+t) via multiple interfaces (command-line (cli), GIMP plug-in, web service, Qt interface, and C++ library). Features:
- G'MIC can process a wide variety of image types, including multi-spectral (arbitrary number of channels), 3D volumetric images, image sequences, or 3D vector objects.
- It can work with lists of images i.e. image manipulations/interactions can be done either grouped or individually.
- It provides small but efficient visualisation modules dedicated to the exploration/viewing of 2D/3D multi-spectral images, 3D vector objects (elevation map, isocurves, isosurfaces etc), or 1D graph plots.
- It is highly extensible through the importation of custom command files (which add new commands that become understood by the language interpreter).
- It proposes commands to handle custom interactive windows so that events can be managed easily by the user.
- It is based on the latest development versions of the CImg Library, a well established C++ template image processing toolkit.

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