A resource shortlist for photographers and other digital artists.

There are many fine products offered by Adobe, such as Photoshop, Illustrator, and Lightroom; but many of us do not have the budgets to afford the monthly costs associated with the Creative Cloud.  I offer you this resource page identifying alternative programs I have used successfully.

The following links worked well and navigated me to their legitimate sites at the time of this writing.  Please practice standard precautions when downloading programs and always virus scan before installing. Neither I nor Glass Lakes Photography is responsible for the content on external links.


Image editors:

G.I.M.P (GNU Image Manipulation Program). Is an open-source Photoshop alternative. While it has many features it also is lacking many others which Photoshop has. It is a wonderful program and can handle basic to advanced needs. Find it at gimp.org.

Adobe offers a free in-browser photo editor called Photo Express, it can be found at photoshop.com/tools.

Pixlr is another browser based image editor. pixlr.com/web

Library Management:

Dark Table is open-source and very similar to Lightroom in cataloging and image management aspects. Find it at darktable.org.

Document creation and Layout:

Scribus, another open-source program, is a wonderful document layout creation tool.  It will allow you to make any sized document ranging from business cards to full size publications. It operates with layers, and you can create a template with text and image frames for a variety of purposes.  It has beautiful align and distribute tools along with basic image editing capabilities. It may be similar to Illustrator, which I have never used. This program also has an extensive knowledge base to answer almost any question. Check it out at scribus.net.

Office Suites:

Both the following programs work very well and can open most other documents by other programs. Note, that sometimes there are formatting issues when going from program to program and you are better off exporting in PDF when emailing or printing a completed document elsewhere. IE at school or the office.

Open Office is an open source clone of Microsoft Office products. The suite contains slide show creation tools, word processes, spreadsheet programs, and more. Check it out at openoffice.org

Libre Office is similar to Open Office and contested as possibly the better program. It sports less resource consumption and similar features. Find it at libreoffice.org


Do you know of any good resources to add? Please comment below and let me know so that I can add them to the list!