- June 18, 2019
- 23 min to read
GIMP Alternative (Windows/Mac)
GIMP is a raster graphics editor that was released in 1996. It provides users with many tools that can be used to edit pictures, convert them and even draw vector illustrations. Although it’s popular with many designers and photographers, its developers still try to improve it and constantly release new updates.
However, there are a lot of alternatives that can keep up with GIMP. They’re great both for beginners and advanced users. Also, each application has features that will certainly amaze even professional experts. And if you don’t want to waste a lot of time searching the best GIMP alternative, this list is just the thing. Besides, we’ve divided it into three different categories to simplify your searches (Free, Online and Paid).
This category includes the best free applications for picture editing. Even though some of them can’t offer a wide choice different tools, effects or filters, they’ll be definitely useful for people who need to change something in their images without spending a good deal of money. Also, these applications will be convenient for photographers, who want just to try themselves in picture editing.
1. Krita (Free or 10$+ for Paid Version)
Looking for free software to work with pictures? Then you certainly should look at Krita. It offers useful features such as templates for any type of project, a variety of wonderful effects and opportunity to open multiple images. The application supports such files as PNG, GIMP, TIF and JPEG. Besides, it’s even possible to connect your drawing table to Krita.
Disappointingly, the application has some drawbacks, such as the absence of a history tool and camera RAW option. However, it stands to mention this software has already gained thousands of positive comments from photographers and graphic designers. Also, if you want to express your gratitude and sponsor the developers, you can buy a paid version.
2. Paint.NET (Free)
In actual fact, this application is a modification of MS Paint, that’s why both apps have many common features. It’s the right choice for people who need GIMP alternative, but don’t have enough money to buy professional software. Among the app’s benefits is the history tool, support of layers and blending modes. The first one can help users cancel edits in a common project without any difficulties. Paint.NET works with all popular photo formats.
On the flip side, the app has cons, such as the absence of the auto-snapping. Also, only Windows owners can use this application. However, in spite of all these drawbacks, Paint.NET is good enough for simple picture editing. There are no doubts that beginner photographers and graphic designers will be satisfied with this app.
3. Seashore (Free)
If you’re Mac user and want to download a GIMP alternative, you should definitely get acquainted with Seashore. The app provides users with such useful features as support for layers and pressure sensitivity. Besides, the app’s interface is really user-friendly, so even a beginner will be able to use it.
Unfortunately, the app doesn’t offer any effects and looks really outdated. But still Seashore is totally free and hundreds of positive comments from its users make this app one of the best graphics editors for macOS.
In this category, you’ll find the photo editors available both for Mac and Windows users. Furthermore, you even won’t need to download anything. And notwithstanding that these are online photo editors, they offer a wide range of useful tools and awesome effects. In addition, you can use each app absolutely for free.
4. Pixlr (Free or 5$/m Pro Version)
Indeed, this is a great application to work with pictures. First of all, it’s provided with a load of useful tools such as history and healing tools, a rich variety of beautiful effects and filters. It’ll come in handy if you need to change a photo without spending a lot of time.
Plus, you can purchase a pro-version. It allows using Pixlr for editing PDF and PSD formats. Although the app doesn’t have a pen tool, thanks to the variety of other features, Pixlr is an amazing online photo editor that you can use to make your pictures better.
5. Sumopaint (30 day trial)
Although this application doesn’t offer as many useful features as GIMP, it still has a bunch of advantages. The first thing is that it offers a free version that supports layers and blending modes. And tons of different effects and filters are another big benefit of this app.
However, everything is not so great, because Sumopaint doesn’t offer support for guides and rulers. Moreover, its interface looks out-of-date especially in comparison with modern photo editors. The app works only with SUMO, PNG and JPG. But still, you always can buy a pro-version that will provide you with access to such necessary tools as text tool, line tool, etc.
6. PicMonkey (7-day Trial)
If you aren’t satisfied with two previous applications, then PicMonkey may be just the right app for you. As well as two previous photo editors, this one works online. Also, it supports layers, has loads of effects and great text tool that offers a lot of different fonts. There is even a mobile app, so it’s possible to work on your projects wherever you are.
But still, PicMonkey has some drawbacks. You’ll have to purchase a pro-version to be able to export the pictures. The cheering news is that there is a 7-day trial version, so don’t miss your chance and use it to decide whether you like this photo editor or not. Besides, take into consideration that PicMonkey works only with JPG and PNG formats.
If you are ready to spend money to get professional picture editors, you definitely should check out each app from this list. They offer so many tools and features to make your pictures better. Moreover, some apps below can improve your images automatically. No doubts, they can not only provide you with top-quality photos but also save your time.
7. Affinity Photo (Free Trial or 40$ Paid Version)
This is truly one of the best GIMP alternatives on the market. It’s possible to download it on any platform. You’ll get access to the healing, clone and pen tools. Furthermore, the app supports layers and blending modes. Also, Affinity works with all popular image formats.
On the contrary, this app still hasn’t a Camera RAW tool and its UI is really difficult to work with. Fortunately, you can download a trial version to check all Affinity’s features before the purchasing.
8. Pixelmator (Free 30 Days or 40$ Paid Version)
It’s a cool picture editor for macOS platform. Alongside with standard tools, the app has unique functions developed by Apple. For example, you’ll be able to export or edit pictures saved in the High-Efficiency Image format. Plus, the app supports SVG files and has a live preview feature.
Although Pixelmator has a wonderful UI with special guidelines, the app still is recommended for people who already have basic photo editing skills. Fortunately, a 30-day trial provides users with the opportunity to taste the application before the purchasing.
9. PhotoLine (30 Days for Testing/ 59€ Full)
This app is a perfect balance of functionality, user-friendly interface and price. Of course, PhotoLine will provide you with the widest breadth of effects and filters that can help you to create a breathtaking image. In addition, graphic designers can use this app to draw vector images.
The bad news is that PhotoLine doesn’t have such necessary tools as pen tool, path tool and slice tool. And take into account that you’ll be provided only with a 30-day free trial to get acquainted with this application and decide whether you want to use it in the future.
Gimp Alternatives - Photo Editing
10. Luminar (7-day free trial)
This app is a surefire way to get incredibly beautiful images. It’s provided with Accent AI 2.0, a special AI assistant that can help you make more realistic pictures. It can fix tone, colour and modify any detail. Moreover, it can recognize people on a picture using its “human aware” technology. Actually, with the help of the Accent, you can get a breathtaking photo only with one click.
The app offers user-friendly interface, so even if you’ve just started learning about picture editing, you won’t be confused after launching Luminar for the first time. Also, it offers tons of unique effects and filters such as sunrays, golden hour, high key and Orton effect. Use them and your pictures will certainly amaze anyone.
The photo editing has been never easier before because the app provides its users with the opportunity to cut out any detail in two clicks. Besides, thanks to the library feature, Luminar will help you to keep all your pictures organized. No doubts, it’s really great GIMP alternative that will definitely save your time. And take into account that there are three different versions available - basic version, signature edition and Luminar Creative Pro.
11. Aurora HDR (7-day free trial)
Are you looking for an app that can help you to create real masterpieces? If your answer is “yes”, you definitely have to download Aurora HDR. It has already satisfied thousands of professional photographers. Thanks to advanced AI, you’ll get just perfect HDR images. Aurora will take care of chromatic aberration, halos or noise.
The app offers more than twenty tools that are necessary for any professional photographer. Use them for colour toning, polarizing or LUT mapping. All these features will help you to get flawless HDR image. Besides, the app will provide you with access to more than 80 unique filters and effects.
And finally, the support of layers, blending modes and masking will help you create the image of the desired quality and style. Also, take into consideration that Aurora can work as a standalone app or as a plug-in for popular photo editors. There are no doubts, that if you want to get professional software for picture editing, Aurora is worth a look.
12. Photolemur (Free Version with Watermark)
Once in a while, it happens so that you want to edit your images, but you don’t have enough time. Luckily there is Photolemur, amazing app that can automatically improve your pictures. The app will use advanced AI to create beautiful images of the highest quality.
For example, Face Finish technology can automatically make the skin smooth and remove all pimples or wrinkles. With this awesome application, you’ll become a master of portrait photography. Also, the app offers such useful features as sky enhancement, RAW processing, colour recovery and exposure compensation. The AI will analyze each detail and transform your picture into real wonder. Without a doubt, you’ll be satisfied with the result.
And if you still have some doubts whether this app is worth its money, take into account that more than 190 thousand photographers are satisfied with Photolemur. According to the statistics it has helped to save millions of hours. So, why not to jump on the bandwagon and check this great GIMP alternative?
13. AirMagic (Free Version with Watermark)
This app will be extremely useful for people who take drone pictures. AirMagic is provided with tons of useful features and technologies. It can automatically remove haze, boost colours and reveal important details. All these features will make your aerial photos brighter and clearer. Besides, the pleasant fact is that thanks to amazing AI and advanced algorithms, the app can analyze your image and improve it without your involvement.
Moreover, it’s possible to use AirMagic to work with several photos at once. Besides, with this app, you can forget about expensive filters for drone cameras. Thanks to its Creative Touch technology you can experiment with different styles to create a breathtaking photo.
Furthermore, AirMagic can work not only as standalone software but also as a plug-in. And the pleasant fact is that you’ll get absolutely free performance updates after purchasing this app.
As you can see, there are a lot of GIMP alternatives that can satisfy not only beginner photographers but also professionals. Some of them offer even more useful features than GIMP itself. However, such software may be expensive enough. That’s why you certainly should choose the app according to your needs, skills and, of course, financial possibilities. Also, don’t forget to check if your computer meets system requirements of the application you want to try out.