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Thread: Simple photo editing software

  1. #1
    herbert's Avatar
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    Simple photo editing software

    I would like to find a simple package for photo editing. The software is for my mother to do some edits to the photos she takes before printing. The main requirements are:

    • Free
    • Allow cropping using defined ratios
    • Efficiently remove red eye


    I quickly tried paint.net but the red eye filter was poor. The photos have a lot of red eye problems from on camera flash so being able to deal with this very easily is a must.

    I have not tried gimp because previously I found it too clunky with a steep learning curve. I may try it again if someone tells me these actions are simple in gimp.

    Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,

    Alex

  2. #2
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    Hi,

    Look at Picasa. It more simpler than gimp and has red eye removal tools.

  3. #3
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    a VERY simple solution is to use Picasa - my wife (certainly not IT experienced) now regularly uses this free software

  4. #4
    herbert's Avatar
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    Hi,

    I have previously looked at Picassa. It has some nice adjustments tools. However in the version I used each time you opened it the software started a scan of your image directories to look for new content to index (and apply face recognition algorithms). This made the software slow and a poor choice for a quick open and edit. Has this behaviour changed or does is it still a resource hog?

    Thanks,

    Alex

  5. #5

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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    For a small cost, see if you can obtain an earlier version of Serif Photo Plus. Versions X2 or X3 should be available for around 20 or a little less.

    Although I eventually moved on to Adobe CS5 I found Photo Plus to be reasonably user friendly and have auto as well as advanced options for basic editing.

    I found their later editions to be much more complex though. Similar in price and complexity to Photoshop.

  6. #6
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    Try Photoscape. It has a red eye removal tool but I can't tell you how good it is as I have never used it.

    GIMP also has a red eye removal tool. It is in the Filters - Enhance menu.

    GIMP Help will guide you through its use.

    Dave

  7. #7
    Melkus's Avatar
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    Picasa will get the job done and you can also up load you photos to it's free hosting sit.

  8. #8
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    Alex, it still does all of that. My wife just downloaded it for her new laptop, and it's got all of those 'great' features you mentioned

  9. #9
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    Quote Originally Posted by herbert View Post
    Hi,

    I have previously looked at Picassa. It has some nice adjustments tools. However in the version I used each time you opened it the software started a scan of your image directories to look for new content to index (and apply face recognition algorithms). This made the software slow and a poor choice for a quick open and edit. Has this behaviour changed or does is it still a resource hog?

    Thanks,

    Alex
    There is an option to turn off Face-recognition.
    I removed Picasa from my computer years ago, so I'm not really sure where to find the settings for it.
    Maybe a Picasa user can help?

  10. #10
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    Try the free editor IrfanView - it will do easily all that you request.

    http://www.irfanview.com/

    Philip

  11. #11
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    Another free editor worth looking at is FastStone:

    http://www.faststone.org/FSViewerDetail.htm

  12. #12
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    Hi Everyone,

    Thanks for the recommendations. I tried a few options and found that the Microsoft Live Essentials 2011 Photo Viewer has a simple set of editing tools:

    http://explore.live.com/windows-live-photo-gallery

    The tool allows you to edit your images and keeps a copy in a separate folder when you start making edits. This means you can always revert back to the original image. A nice touch.

    The red eye reduction tool is very easy to use and worked a lot better than the ones I found in Photoscape, Paint.NET, Photo Pos Pro, PhotoFiltre or Pixia.

    Not as good as Lightroom but then it is infinitely cheaper.

    I will try IrfanView later. I have heard a lot of good things about this in the past. I had FastStone once as well. Strangely I did not find it very good for browsing images and removed it. However I will give it another go since I did not try any editing with it.

    Thanks,

    Alex

  13. #13
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    FastStone is continually being improved. It is now so good IMHO that I don't know why the author gives it away.

  14. #14
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    Probably the opposite reason as to why folk still buy CS5 etc. And of course if you sell it you get taxed, donations dont!

    I would agree with Irfanview and a colleague in the imaging industry recently recommended FastStone.

    Wouldn't touch Picassa for the reasons mentioned.

  15. #15
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    I don't like a program which is invasive of my computer. Years ago, when I loaded Irfanview, the program invaded all of my image libraries and replaced the suffixes with their generic Irfanview suffix. If I remember correctly, it replaced all of my .jpg suffixes and may have replaced the RAW CR-2 suffixes also.

    It seems to me that I had a devil of a problem getting rid of Irfanview and its suffixes.

    This was years ago and very possibly things have changed with the program. I certainly hope so.

  16. #16
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    Richard

    I loaded it for a photography seminar I was doing recently (cause it was free) and didn't have that experience. Although my photo libraries were not attached at the time, I dont recall it grabbing the limited number of images on the laptop and renaming them, although you can make it do that if you wish.

    As it is, I dont want to go through such trauma and stick with the software on the Mac (NX2 and CS3, plus for cataloging, LR. Thats plenty without going any further! If I was starting out again though I do think some of the free/donatable offerings are very good nowadays.

  17. #17
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    Photo! Editor is very easy for a newbie.
    http://pho.to/editor/

  18. #18

    Re: Simple photo editing software

    You need more than one. For simple tasks I use PhotoFiltre (the best allrounder), but Picasa has the easiest horizon-straightener, and Photoshop Elements has a Repair Brush which is absolutely brilliant for getting rid of dust and scratches. As my current major project is digitalizing all my old slides, this last is particularly useful, but so is the Picasa thing -- slides tend to slip in their frames. Picasa also has an easy-to-use sky-darkener.

  19. #19
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    I've not used it for many years and it isn't free but Paintshop Pro is an interesting package. I was always fascinated by 2 features - improve image - it did and colour balancing against a palette of things that are quite likely to be in shots - it did that too. And red eye removal even from our dog. I once used it to colour balance some chrome bathroom taps taken under strip lights just out of curiosity. It did it perfectly and since then I have wondered why other packages don't offer something similar. Ok this sort of thing will work best on the main subject but often that is what is really needed anyway.

    Costs were modest and many other facilities are buried in it if some starts getting adventurous. Not sure what has happened to it now but it mighty be worth trialing their cheaper packages to see.

    I don't trust Google and the like - data mining is their business.

    John
    PS Gimp may have more than one red eye plug in. Never used it for that so pass.

  20. #20
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    Re: Simple photo editing software

    Quote Originally Posted by MrB View Post
    Try the free editor IrfanView - it will do easily all that you request.

    http://www.irfanview.com/

    Philip
    Although I have heard that irfanview is a decent program, I removed it from my computer without using it because it immediately took control of my computer and changed all of my image suffixes to the Irfanview suffix. This was not just the images I edited, it was all the images on my hard drive...

    Maybe I did something wrong?

    However it seems that most cameras come with some simple editing programs. I know that Canon does...

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