If your hobby is digital photography, or if this is your business and line of work, you might have noticed that even the best photographs and most talented of photographers is going to need some help with touch-ups and corrections. In the “old days” when film was used, photographers would spend time in the darkroom manipulating their photos manually; today photographers of course use digital photography software to help them improve and correct problems with their photos.
When you’re ready to shop for digital photography software, you need to first of all determine your needs from this software and your budget as well. If you’re an amateur photographer and just need something that is going to let you upload and share your photos, you can find many basic software packages that allow you to do just that. Most have very few options and just let you frame your photos, crop your photos, and not much else. For beginners or amateurs, you probably won’t need much more from your digital photography software, and shouldn’t spend more than $25-$50 for it either.
For professional photographers or someone that is serious about this hobby, your digital photography software is going to need to have a lot more options for you – and of course it’s going to cost you a lot more as well.
Adobe PhotoShop is one of the leading digital photography software packages available. Most who are new to these types of packages also report that it’s one of the more difficult to learn because of its many features. However, it allows for quite a bit of photo editing and graphic design. It has tools for drawing, retouching photos, working with different types of photos, painting, adding notes, and so many other elements. There are layer styles, adjustment layers, masks, smart objects, and filters. If you’re unfamiliar with these phrases and options, you may want to consider some digital photography software that is less complicated and more user-friendly.
Corel Painter is another common digital photography software package that is more of an artistic and painting program rather than simply something you use for photos. Suppose your business of photography includes working with products for marketing material; you may want to think about how you can make those photos more artistic and appealing. However, if you work with landscapes or portraits, you might not need something in your digital photography software that is so artistic.
Serif PhotoPlus is considered by many to be a more basic and affordable version of PhotoShop. It of course has many less features than Adobe’s digital photography software but is also much more affordable, typically around $100. It is a basic program that allows you to manipulate your photos and improve them without letting you get bogged down with features you may not need. For an amateur that is simply looking for a way to improve pictures, PhotoPlus is a good digital photography software package that you might want to consider.
Digital photography software is not always that difficult to learn and use, and depending on why you’re investing in this software you might want to consider taking a class that gives you some basic instruction. Of course, this will depend on how comfortable you are with the learning curve needed to use these packages. If you have a history of graphic design or arts, you might already be familiar with many of the terms and options you’ll find in digital photography software. However, as with every other program or computer accessory you might invest in, it would be well worth it to learn how to use it properly so that you get your money’s worth!
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