While Adobe Photoshop has long been the industry standard for editing images, it’s not the best tool for many users. For starters, it has a pretty steep learning curve, speed and performance issues, and high subscription costs.
Adobe Photoshop has a complicated interface that beginners may find difficult to grasp and navigate around. Similarly, for small development houses or social media marketers who need to create and deliver content on a regular basis, working in Photoshop can be needlessly time-consuming.
These limitations have left many Photoshop users searching for better alternatives.
In this post, we take a look at three of the best Photoshop alternatives and explain what makes them perfect for anyone looking to switch to something different.
Photofox is an iOS-only image editing and art creation app that enables you to shoot and edit photos with your mobile devices. You’ll be able to edit photos on your iPhone or iPad and share them on social media directly from your smartphone or tablet.
Photofox is part of the ”Enlight Creative Pack” alongside other popular apps from Lightricks: Quickshot, Videoleap, and Pixaloop. You can download Photofox for free from the iOS App Store. It is compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch.
The app has a simple and intuitive user interface that gives you access to powerful image editing tools and effects. Although Photofox is essentially a photo editing app, it’s packed with a variety of professional image manipulation features for creative compositing, with a focus on blending images, special effects, and layering.
Photofox has a gradual learning curve, which makes it easy to get to grips with both its basic and complex editing tools. Moreover, you can view Photofox tutorials to get comfortable with editing photos.
In addition to this, you’ll get access to sophisticated collage creation features that’ll help you create beautiful art pieces. It has a huge library of beautiful effects, backgrounds, apertures, filters and glitch art designs that you can use to transform captured moments into jaw-dropping visuals.
Photofox lets you add text, icons, and borders to your images and add additional detail using brushes. You can use its Darkroom feature to manipulate the tone, contrast, and detail of your photos. Darkroom offers various sets of filter looks and photo tools such as Basic, Color, Details, Curves and Split Tone.
You will also be able to combine, merge, and blend up to five layers in one composition using Photofox’s Layers feature. This is especially useful if you want to granularly manipulate individual layers as you create your artwork.
Photofox is great for professionals who need to upload edited photos to social media while on the move. If you’re a digital artist and you need creative filters and effects to deliver beautiful art pieces, for example, Photofox can help you do just that.
Compared to Photoshop, Photofox is easier to use and more lightweight. Plus, Photofox offers a well-defined and streamlined workflow for adjusting edits and effects.
If you’re looking for a simple yet powerful image editing software alternative to Photoshop, Photofox packs the right features. It is intuitive to use and has a gradual learning curve. Additionally, it will work seamlessly on your iOS-powered device.
2. Affinity Photo
Affinity Photo is a powerful desktop image editing tool that helps you process raw image files, and edit, manipulate and merge them together. Using this app, you can quickly retouch your photos and create beautiful art with dozens of layers. Designed for the Windows, iOS, and macOS operating systems, Affinity Photo comes with features similar to those offered by Adobe Photoshop. It is part of Affinity’s line of professional graphics editors.
Affinity Photo is user-friendly, responsive and simple to use. Moreover, you can use its adjustable workspace to customize the interface in any way you want. It’s loaded with useful tools like Healing Brush, Layer Mix, Filter Library and Dynamic Lighting Effects.
Affinity’s intuitive interface gives you access to “Personas,” or sub-interfaces that help you with specific tasks. For instance, the Liquify Persona offers warp effects that let you correct distorted images and manipulate pixels; the Photo Persona lets you make your photos look great with preset filters; the Develop Persona has the photo editing elements for RAW processing, the Tone Mapping Persona helps you quickly change the tone and color of your photos; and finally, the Export Persona allows you to export photos in PNG, RAW, TIFF, JPEG, and other formats.
Affinity Photo supports “continuity,” which means you’ll be able to take pictures or scan documents with your iPhone and have them instantly appear on your desktop machine. Similarly, you’ll also be able to switch between devices, enabling you to send files from your desktop to iPad and back.
Using Affinity Photo, you can edit and import Photoshop PSD files and export them. It supports LAB, Photoshop, and lets you edit in 32-bit RGB documents. Affinity Photo is suitable for photo editors who are looking for a similar tool to Photoshop, as it offers a familiar interface.
The main reason why you should use Affinity Photo instead of Photoshop is that it gives fewer crashes, higher speeds, and unlimited undo. Plus, if you need a powerful, feature-rich image editing tool that lets you edit PSDs, Affinity Photo is the best available Photoshop alternative. It’s basically the “Photoshop that isn’t Photoshop” option.
PicMonkey is easy to use, web-based image editing tool for social media posts and blog article images. Its web app is available for desktop machines on all operating systems, alongside its iOS and Android apps.
PicMonkey has a user-friendly interface that gives you access to image editing tools through well-organized, thematic tabs that help you perform specific tasks. For instance, the Canvas edits tab lets you crop, resize, and display images; the Basic edits tab enables you to retouch photos simply; and the Advanced edits tab allows you to make granular color corrections.
In addition to this, PicMonkey gives you access to a variety of templates that are designed primarily for social media graphics. They’re great for creating brochures, banners, ads and logos. You can also find lots of customizable overlays for adding stickers to your visuals, like hearts, small animals, labels, banners, and lines.
Similarly, you can add artsy frames and apply textures to your image backgrounds. PicMonkey’s editor also lets you use themes, which include ready-made inscriptions with attractive texts and fonts. Moreover, its one-click background remover lets you quickly mask photos, enabling you to edit the subject while leaving the background just the way it is.
If you want, you can choose from a huge collection of stock photos or create your own art pieces with lots of available photo editing presets, filters and effects.
PicMonkey is perfect for photographers who are heavy social media users. In addition to this, templates combined with powerful photo editing presets, filters, and effects make it an ideal tool for SMBs that need branding features to create logos and ads.
The main difference between PicMonkey and Photoshop is that the former is designed with social media use in mind. Changing exposure, touching up photos, and adding effects is a breeze. Plus, PicMonkey comes with lots of stylish stock photos and templates out of the box.
If you need pre-built templates, a one-click background remover, and collaboration features, this Photoshop alternative is up to the mark.
Although Adobe Photoshop is a great tool, it can be an expensive, tech-heavy, and time-consuming image editor for many users. There are several photo editing tools that can help you create and deliver beautiful artwork, edit and retouch photos, and add eye-catching effects to your images in less time and for a fraction of the cost.
Let’s quickly recap some of the points we discussed in this article:
If you’re looking for simple yet powerful image editing software for your iPhone that has a gradual learning curve and is easy to use, Photofox has got you covered.
Affinity Photo is good for anyone who needs a powerful, feature-rich image editing tool similar to Photoshop but with fewer crashes and better speeds.
PicMonkey is a web-based image editing tool that is built with social media use in mind. It can help users create beautiful posts, ads, banners and cover graphics.
Once you know what you’re looking for in a photo editing tool, you’ll be able to choose the best Photoshop alternative for your specific needs.