It’s now easier than ever for digital marketers and content creators to take photos and find images, but what can you do if the image isn’t quite right?
From resizing tools to full-fledged Photoshop replacements, here is a round-up of tools that can help you bend images to your will.
Most of these online image-editing tools allow you to crop, rotate, touch up, adjust brightness, contrast and color, and add filters to photos. It’s just a question of how they do it.
One common task for marketers is resizing images to fit a blog post or other medium. Practically all of the image editors on this list let you do this, but if all you need to do is change the size of the image, a simpler tool might be enough. Here are three to choose from:
Description: Windows Image Resizer allows Windows 7 users to fix an image’s size with a couple of clicks. Choose from a selection of presets—or set your own—and work with the original image or make a copy. It only takes a couple of seconds. The tool allows batch processing, too.
Use this software if: You want to change an image’s size but don’t need to crop.
Description: ResizeIt is an image resizer for Macs that includes a batch resizing functionality. You can save preset sizes and choose to keep or discard the aspect ratio.
Use this software if: You use a Mac and need a simple image resizer.
3. Pic Resize
Description: Pic Resize is not just a resizer. It also lets you crop, rotate, flip, add special effects, and choose an image format. It’s a quick, effective tool, though the resizing options are limited.
Use this software if: You need to resize a picture when your desktop isn’t handy.
Image editors for your phone
You took a photo with your smartphone, but you’re not happy with the lighting or look. Consider installing one of these photo-editing apps:
Description: A product of Adobe, Photoshop Express Editor provides a suite of free photo-editing functions. If you normally use Photoshop you might find it limiting, but for most people it provides an easy way to make simple corrections to your photos.
Its best feature is the range of filters, and you can create an account for file storage and sharing functionality.
Use this software if: You want an application from a trusted brand without the hefty price tag of the real Photoshop.
Description: One of the great things about Snapseed is you can edit a photo you took on your phone, make the image pop, and easily share it on social media. The fine-tuning features are awesome. The best part is the “details” adjustment with the sharpen and structure tools. It has some great filters and overlays, too.
Use this software if: You need to brighten and sharpen portraits and landscapes.
Cost: Free trial (Windows/Mac); free (Android/iOs)
Description: I’m a bit biased here because I love Pixlr. Not only is it available on your phone, but it has three different Web versions depending on the type of image editing you want to do. The “Playful” version has some fun filters, while the “Express” version has a huge range of adjustments and effects, including seasonal ones. The “Advanced” version is more like Photoshop.
Pixlr has rapidly become my favorite online image editor because it’s so easy to use and has a ton of editing options.
Use this software if: You need to quickly jazz up your photos and want a tool you can use anywhere.
Description: Sumopaint works like other tools in this roundup, but one key difference is the option to start from scratch with a blank canvas, which could be useful if you just want to create a simple background. The interface is similar to Photoshop, but has a few additional filters.
Use this software if: You need to create your own image online.
Cost: Free; pro version is $19
Cloud/desktop photo-editing tools
Do you need a tool you can use on your computer? Try these options for your desktop computer or the cloud.
Description: The GNU Image Manipulation Program (gimp) is full featured. In fact, it’s just like Photoshop, but free. Gimp will do anything you want to do with a photo, but it has a steep learning curve and may be too complex for someone who just wants a quick photo fix.
Use this software if: You’re a photo perfectionist without a Photoshop budget.
Description: PicMonkey offers a wide range of photo-editing tools via an easy-to-understand interface. Its strong point is an excellent selection of filters, overlays, frames, textures and themes you can apply with a click and then customize to taste.
Use this software if: You are bored with the usual filters.
Cost: Free (ad supported), with a premium version for $33 a year.
Description: Quick Picture Tools is a suite of 12 online image-editing tools. While the interface is a bit old-fashioned and the functions are limited, it’s a simple program if you are trying to add a few simple effects. One neat feature is the ability to use your own image on a wallpaper calendar for your desktop.
Use this software if: You just need to add some simple effects, like combining images or creating a rounded corner effect.
More image-editing tools
The ten tools above are just a few of the options available. Here are some more alternatives:
11. Aviary was once a beloved photo-editing app, but these days is available for developers to plug in to their apps. It works in the cloud and on iOS, Android and Windows Phone 7.
12. BeFunky is a free Web tool that is also available for iOS and Android. It includes a wide range of photo filters, but you will have to upgrade to a paid monthly package to get more.
13. Citrify is a Flash app that works on Windows, Mac and Linux. It has the standard tools and some unusual filters, including one that makes you look like the Incredible Hulk.
14. Dr Pic is a free Web app with an old-fashioned interface.
15. Editor Pho.to is a free Web app that has some fun effects, including the ability to turn photos into caricatures.
16. Fotor is available for the iPhone, Android and Windows 8. This tool makes it easy to create photo collages online.
17. Gickr lets you create animated GIFs from uploaded photos.
18. Glitterboo is a free Web app that lets you add some sparkle to your uploaded photos.
19. Lunapic is a Web app that supports a wide range of image formats, and allows you to upload from and download to popular photo-sharing sites. Its array of photo customizations is pretty impressive.
20. Picfull is a Web app that keeps things simple with a limited array of photo effects.
21. Pixenate is a Web app with the standard range of photo-editing tools.
22. Splashup is available in the cloud and for Windows. It’s an app that integrates with photo-sharing services. It also has a light version available for download.
Do you have any more tools to add to the list?
Sharon Hurley Hall is a professional writer and blogger. A version of this article originally appeared on The Daily Egg.