So. You want to start making graphics and editing photos, eh? But you don’t have Photoshop, you say? Have no fear! Lila to the rescue! I’ve been making photo edits and graphics for over a year now and I have never touched Photoshop! How do I do it?
First things first,
I’m the realest you’ll need the proper tools! So that’s what we’ll be discussing today. I’m going to give you all the resources you’ll need to make graphics and edit photos sans Photoshop! There are a lot, but don’t feel overwhelmed, because you’re not going to be using all of them, some of them are just alternatives you can use if you find that one doesn’t work for you. So let’s jump right in!
Photo Editing Programs:
The first thing you’ll need is a good photo editing program to actually, you know, edit photos. There are the ones I use (they’re all free btw):
- GIMP: The free alternative to PhotoShop, GIMP is what I use when I have to do more “in depth” editing. It’s the closest to a free version of PhotoShop you’ll get, as far as I know, although it’s a little clunkier.
- Fotor: A quick and free photo editor, which lets you edit brightness, contrast, saturation, temperature, tint, sharpness, and vignette and has a ton of filters
- Collager: This lets you create free style collages, but what I really use it for is its gradient transparency feature when I want to graft an image over another.
- Pixlr Editor (online): Another free alternative to PhotoShop (although, like GIMP, it’s less powerful), but this program is online.
- Pixlr Express (online): A quick and easy editor, Pixlr Express has more editing option than Fotor, but less than the full version of the Pixlr editor.
- iPiccy (online): This program is online and is free. You can use it to edit and “air brush” images.
- LunaPic (online): This is where I edit all of my gifs (without editing each frame). It has tons of simple and more complex gif editing options.
- Online Image Editor: This can be used to edit both photos and gifs. One of my favorite features of Online Image Editor is its transparency “wizard!”
- EZGif: This is a really simplistic gif editor, but I use it for quick edits, like cropping and splitting a gif.
- ImgFlip: This site allows you to create gifs from compiled images, saved videos, or online (a.k.a. YouTube) videos.
- BeFunky (online): This is a free online editor AND collage maker (it has grid collage options or others).
- PowerPoint: Are you confused? Laugh all you want, but I actually do a lot of photo editing by inserting photos into a PowerPoint and then using all of the photo editing options PowerPoint has available. After that, I take a screenshot of the PowerPoint in full screen and crop it. Like I said, laugh all you want, but it works 😉
Fonts are really important for design and editing as they can add flair, style, and personality. Here are some of the free font resources I use:
- Free Design Resources
- 1001 Free Fonts
- Font Space
- Random: Often if you search “free font” you’ll find a handful of blogs offering up freebies or deals on fonts.
Vectors and Clipart:
When making graphics, you’ll want to use vectors and clipart (images, usually with transparent backgrounds, which don’t become pixelated when you resize them). It’s rarer to find free vectors and clipart, but here are some sources of freebies:
You’ll also want to use icons to create things like social media icons. Here are some resources for free icons:
Royalty Free Images:
If you don’t take your own photos, you’ll need a source of royalty free images. Royalty free images are images you don’t have to pay to use. For some of them, you have to credit the creator, for others, you don’t. Here are my resources for royalty free images where you don’t have to credit the creator:
Tutorial And Resources Sites:
Confession: I’m not the Supergirl of design. I don’t know everyhing. So here are some websites offering multiple free resources and tutorials!
- Gimp Blogging: Free tutorials on how to use Gimp to create certain affects.
- Gimping Along: More free Gimp tutorials.
- Code Color Create: A source of images, icons, and tutorials
- Free Design Resources: Free resources like fonts, royalty free images, icons, and vectors for designers.
- Design Your Own Blog: Countless helpful tutorials and lists of resources to help you design your blog.
So that’s it for now! Please leave a comment letting me know if this was helpful and letting me know any design tutorials you’d like to see next (i.e. how to make a blog button, how to design a header, etc)!