Choose Photo-Editing Software for Your Blog - dummies

Choose Photo-Editing Software for Your Blog

By Melissa Culbertson

You have lots of options when choosing photo-editing software for your blog, from free to expensive. Choosing the right photo-editing software for your blog ultimately boils down to how much you want to spend and how much editing you plan to do.

If you’re looking for basic features — say, resizing, cropping, and adjusting contrast or balance —you can probably get by with a free or almost free program. If you’re looking for more advanced features — creating paths, using masks, and working in layers —you’ll need more complex software with a higher price tag.

Many bloggers might not want to invest in pricey software, so they might like the free web-based software PicMonkey. There’s no software to install because PicMonkey is web-based. Just browse to the PicMonkey web page, upload a photo, and get to work.


Of course, they are many, many other choices aside from PicMonkey. Here are just a few:

  • Adobe Photoshop

    Mac and PC. Photoshop is the industry standard in photo-editing software and is ideal for professional photographers or serious amateurs. Along with the myriad of features that come built in, you can also add brushes, plug-ins, patterns, and color swatches for even greater functionality. There’s a definite learning curve, but Photoshop can do just about everything you’d want it to.

  • Adobe Photoshop Elements

    Mac and PC. According to the NPD Group/Retail Tracking Service, this program is the best-selling consumer photo-editing software in the United States. This program has many features similar to the more expensive Photoshop but is geared more for someone who doesn’t need advanced features. It does have a learning curve, although not as steep as full-fledged Photoshop, so Photoshop Elements is a good stepping stone from basic to high-end software.

  • Corel PaintShop Photo Pro X5

    PC only. PaintShop Photo Pro X5 is a rival to Photoshop but at a lower price point. It has less image-processing power and fewer features, but some users consider this program more user-friendly than Photoshop. It’s also more geared toward the average consumer.

  • Picasa

    Mac and PC. Picasa is a Google photo-editing application. You can do basic editing or apply effects in an easy-to-use interface. You might also find this program good for organizing your photos and using as a photo-sharing tool.

  • GIMP

    Mac. GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) enables you do many of the same things as Photoshop but isn’t as user-friendly to use. GIMP is a popular choice for those who don’t want to invest in Photoshop, but it’s hard to compare the two given that GIMP is free, and Photoshop costs hundreds of dollars.