It’s one thing to know how to set up a frame and get a decent image, and it’s another to be able to turn that snapshot into a stunning photograph. This can only be done with the right edits.
Editing is a crucial part of a photographer’s creative process. It helps them bring out the most important aspects of an image and fix any imperfections. It takes a pretty picture and makes it a work of art that turns heads and really knows how to “wow” someone.
As such, every photographer needs the right photo editing software for their images. Here are 10 of the top editing systems you should consider using!
1. Adobe Photoshop
Photoshop is arguably the most well-known photo editing software there is.
It’s pretty straightforward to use, and it has all kinds of capabilities. This works well with landscape photography, portraits, products, and everything in between. Photoshop is a good system to use when you need to add vectors to an image or you need to create presets for an entire collection.
2. Adobe Photoshop Elements
Photoshop Elements is like the big brother of Photoshop. It has a built-in face recognition feature and it offers keyword tagging capabilities, too.
This makes it easy to turn raw images into beautifully-optimized web content, which can help gain your photography business more exposure to succeed.
3. Adobe Lightroom
Another Adobe program worth checking out is Lightroom.
This is basically a mix of Photoshop and Photoshop Elements. Lightroom has smart capabilities like face recognition and keyword tagging, but, it also comes with lens profile correction features that Photoshop Elements doesn’t have.
Keep in mind that some well-known Adobe features aren’t included, though. Lightroom doesn’t offer content-aware edits or layer editing in the same way that the other programs do. But, it is a good system to have available nonetheless.
4. Adobe Photography Plan
If you’re having trouble deciding which Adobe photo editing software to invest in, consider buying two instead of one! That’s possible with the Adobe Photography Plan package. This purchase gives you access to Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom.
It’s the smartest way to combine all the Adobe tools you need, even if it does mean switching back and forth between two programs while doing edits.
5. Corel PaintShop Pro
For those who want Photoshop tools at a non-Photoshop price, Corel PaintShop Pro is the way to go. It’s not quite as advanced as Adobe’s software, but it does come pretty close.
Corel PaintShop offers many of the same capabilities such as face recognition and content-aware edits. It can also do camera corrections, however, it’s not ideal for things like noise canceling or typeface edits.
6. Serif Affinity Photos
As popular as Adobe editing tools are, they’re not the only ones to choose from. Take the time to see what Serif’s Affinity Photos program can do, too.
Serif is one of the best options on this list in terms of photo editing for beginners. The interface is super simple to navigate – so much so that you can customize your control panel!
The controls are a lot to take in at first, though. All of them are displayed on the control panel (as opposed to being tucked into groups). It means you’ll have some getting used to before you’re well-aquainted with all of them.
But, at least you’ll be able to organize them all to your liking as you go.
7. CyberLink PhotoDirector 8
Up next on the list is CyberLink’s PhotoDirector, 8th edition.
This offers everything from keyword tagging and face recognition to content-aware edits and lens corrections capabilities. It’s basically the full package of all the photo editing tools you could ever want. But, it does come at a price that’s higher than most of the other options on this list.
8. ACDSee Ultimate
If you want to explore even more options before committing to one photo editing software, see how you like the ACDSee Ultimate system.
It has a great management setup which makes finding images in a bundle of photos pretty simple. The interface when editing a photo is customizable, and the final results available aren’t too bad, either. You can trust this software to provide you with a top-notch image for digital uploading needs and printing, too.
9. Microsoft Photos
When in doubt, open your computer and see what the included photo editing software can do. For Windows laptops and desktops, that software will be Microsoft Photos.
It’s a free system that allows you to focus on the basics. There are no fancy gadgets included, but there is enough to let you get the job done. You can play with contrast and brightness on Microsoft Photos and make images sharper if the focus is off.
10. Apple Photos
Just as Windows computers have Microsoft Photos, MacBooks and iMacs have Apple Photos. Again, though, this is only for the basics.
Apple Photos helps photographers do simple edits on the fly. It’s good for color corrections, lighting changes, and sharpening. But, it can’t really live up to a program like Photoshop or Affinity Photos.
Keep this in mind as you’re progressing in your photography skills and looking for new ways to challenge yourself and create beautiful images.
Get the Most Out of Each Photo Editing Software
It’s one thing to understand all the photo editing software options out there, and another to figure out how to best utilize each one. Keep in mind this doesn’t mean you have to buy every single one on this list. Just make sure that you figure out the ins and outs of all the software you do end up purchasing and downloading.
The more you know, the better you’ll be able to make all the tools work for you.
For more photography tips and tricks from taking photos to creating beautiful final results, click here.