Looking for a basic photo editor

Posted:
in Mac Software edited January 2014
Okay, I'm still within' my first month of mac ownership, and one of my few disappointments has been iPhoto. I used to use my digital camera's included software(ACDSee) for all my photo editing needs, but the software wasn't mac compatible.



I have found iPhoto to be completely useless for anything other than basic photo storage. All I'm looking to do is resize photos(by pixel) for message board avatars or uploading. Also to resize photos(by inch or mm) for printing. iPhoto to my knowledge doesn't let me do either of these in any sort of simple manner.



So what I'm looking for is a basic photo editor for my mac. I've read about iView and Aperture, but both of these seem like extreme overkill in both features and price for what I want to do with my photos.



So what are my options at a reasonable price? Reasonable being anywhere from free-$70 or so.



Thanks

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 15
    flounderflounder Posts: 2,674member
    If you select a individual or batch of photos in iPhoto and export them (it's either under the file or iPhoto menu, I can't recall which) you can resize to your heart's content.



    I'm confused about resizing for printing? Why would you need to do that? You can print whatever size you want from the print dialog box.
  • Reply 2 of 15
    I've tried the whole export to resize thing. I would hardly call the options availible in the export function as "resizing to my hearts content". Even with the "custom" option, its still very limited compared to most photo editing software. Besides that, why the heck should you have to try to export a photo just to change its size



    As for the resizing for printing. I would need to do it because I don't want everything I print to be full page. Sometimes I need to take a picture and print it out in a specific size, like 2.5in x 3.75in. And I'm not seeing an option in the print dialog box that lets me do that.



    Like I said, this is only my first month with the mac, so if you know something that will make iPhoto not seem like junk, please share. I'd love to make use of it rather than buying a new program. But from the research I've done, pretty much everyone switching from PC to mac has found iPhoto to be bunk compared to the photo editing software they were used to.



    Thats why I'm looking for a better photo editing software. But if theres ways to do what I want with iPhoto, I would love to do that.
  • Reply 3 of 15
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,200moderator
    Graphic Converter ($35 - http://www.lemkesoft.com/ ) and Photoshop Elements ($90 - http://www.adobe.com/products/photoshopelmac/ - have to wait a few weeks for version 6 universal though) are both pretty good for photo editing. Graphic Converter is great for batch compressing - I use it for that all the time.
  • Reply 4 of 15
    iPhoto does that, use the crop tool or go to your edit panel and edit your image from there
  • Reply 5 of 15
    erikyeriky Posts: 10member
    You can install Seashore (based on the GIMP). "Seashore only aims to serve the basic image editing needs of most computer users, not to provide a replacement for professional image editing products." It's free and open source software. I haven't tried it yet as my first mac will arrive this week. That's why I know about this, I have searched for all useful open source products I want to install on my new mac. I found this on http://www.opensourcemac.org/
  • Reply 6 of 15
    santasanta Posts: 66member
    G'day Darkseid



    iPhoto started out as a photo organizing tool, and basic photo adjustment capability was added during successive iterations. Also added was the ability to store movies from digital cameras, but if you think photos have a lack of adjustment, movies have none (except a few basics if you have Quicktime Pro), not even the ability to rotate the often taken Movie-On-Its-Side (©).



    These capabilities don't include easy photo resizing (in pixels per inch), although sending photos to email in a range of sizes is very easy.



    Cropping is also easy, but you can end up with photos of varying resolutions, which if added to a page/sheet in photoshop or photoshop elements, cause mismatched sizes, as all photos printed on a sheet must have the same pixel count per inch.



    Also a pain is the inability to print 3 6x4 inch standard sized photos on an A4 sheet. It's possible, if you rotate the photos if necessary, to fit 3 into an 8x10 inch panel, but iPhoto wastes paper by only printing 2 per sheet. Printing from iPhoto could use some work, such as rotating, dragging and dropping within a print panel. Having said that, clicking on a photo in the print panel will bring up a simple dialog box that allows re-sizing and dragging of the photo within the bounds of the size you have set.



    Thorsten Lemkes Graphic Converter is a great buy, I've only had to buy one major update in 10 years (that was last year). It allows batch processing, opens heaps of different formats, and allows photo adjustments. It's free to try, but it's only downfall is photos have to be dragged from the iPhoto window and dropped on it's dock icon; they can't be set to edit direct from iPhoto. Also, don't save the photo in it's current name and place, or iPhoto goes haywire (or at least it used to, I haven't tried the procedure with the current iPhoto). A golden rule is 'never replace an iPhoto file with an externally edited version'.



    I have iPhoto set to edit directly into photoshop (photoshop elements would probably also do the same) under the iPhoto/Preferences/General/Edit Photo menu, and edited photos are automatically saved and tracked by iPhoto when using this option.



    Regards



    Santa
  • Reply 7 of 15
    imacfpimacfp Posts: 750member
    Don't be too hard on iPhoto it's really designed to organize and do basic (to intermediate) photo editing and then allow easy print, calendar, book, and slideshow creation. As far as a photo editor, I'd go with Graphic Converter. It's very good and a good price. Good luck.
  • Reply 8 of 15
    normheadnormhead Posts: 28member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by imacFP View Post


    Don't be too hard on iPhoto it's really designed to organize and do basic (to intermediate) photo editing and then allow easy print, calendar, book, and slideshow creation. As far as a photo editor, I'd go with Graphic Converter. It's very good and a good price. Good luck.



    I'd second that. One of my buddies who was a commercial photographer actually preferred Graphic converter to Photoshop for most of what he did. I don't use it often, but that's because I'm nr familiar with photoshop, not because I can't do what I want to do in Graphic Converter.
  • Reply 9 of 15
    xdanielxdaniel Posts: 29member
    For very quick and easy photo resizing, it'd hard to beat RapidoResizer. Very very easy.
  • Reply 10 of 15
    s.metcalfs.metcalf Posts: 872member
    A relatively new contender that is worth considering is Pixelmator...I found it to be fast with a pleasant interface that seems to leverage all the Apple built-in effects really well such as Core-Image filters. It still has a few bugs to iron out but I'm sure these will be addressed soon. It's still pretty good for a new product.



    For instance, I was trying to create some really small images to send over cellular but no matter how hard I tried Photoshop couldn't make a 300 x 200 pixel jpeg less than 60 or 70 kB even on the lowest quality setting. With Pixelmator I could scale it right down to as low as I wanted to go...1 kB even (though the photo was unrecognizable at this size!). This matters a lot if you're making websites and stuff. At this point I completely ditched Photoshop cause I couldn't handle it's load-up times!
  • Reply 11 of 15
    giantgiant Posts: 6,041member
    You can resize images in Preview on Leopard. Tools -> Adjust Size...
  • Reply 12 of 15
    gastroboygastroboy Posts: 530member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by giant View Post


    You can resize images in Preview on Leopard. Tools -> Adjust Size...



    Preview can be surprisingly adept at some things (like converting eps or ps to pdf) but cropping and resizing is so arse about face, it's hard to believe it is part of the "easy to use Mac interface".



    Why these relatively simple and mundane functions can't be achieved directly with a straightforward, non-concealed toolset has me puzzled.



    Despite owning GraphicConvertor for over a decade, I rarely use it because of its primitive, awkward and obtuse interface. The developer is always quick to respond to queries but not with useful answers. I think this must be the basis of his reputation as "responsive". I'd be more impressed if his responses actually addressed my issues.



    Pixelmator seems to be being talked up a lot which is amazing for a beta which still does relatively little.



    PhotoShop Elements maybe most on-cue for these tasks, if it weren't like much of Adobe's software, bloated and slow.



    RapidoResizer is free, fast and simple but it is yet another application and doesn't let you crop.



    Others you might want to try: LiveQuartz (free), Resizeit (free) and BatchResize'em (free). Sizerox (US$9.95) and EasyCrop (US$11.95 -looks close to what you want)



    Seems like there is an opening here for someone to fill. Apple should really bring iPhoto more into line or simply straighten up Preview's toolset.



    How has Apple managed to leave such a field, in which it originally excelled, so bereft of possibilities?
  • Reply 13 of 15
    yamayama Posts: 427member
    I find it increasingly difficult to seriously recommend Graphic Converter to new users just wanting a basic image editor. There are so many other nifty little shareware apps out there that are much nicer to use than GC.



    GC really is starting to feel not only horribly dated, but is increasing in bloat with each revision. It really feels like a MacOS9 app in the way the interface looks and how it works with files. By default it creates needless resource forks, thumbnails and icon previews for files. The menu layout is a complete mess, with endless submenus all over the place. The edit tools feel clunky and inaccurate. The preferences window takes about half an hour to go through all the settings.



    Still, the best thing about Graphic Converter is that it's still amazing for converting between a vast number of file formats. That's really the only reason I keep it around.



    For quick image editing I would rather suggest Acorn, Pixelmator, Paintbrush or Rita, all of which actually feel like MacOSX apps.



    Photoshop Elements is still a good product which offers an amazing amount of power for a low price. It really is shocking how many features are in there. It doesn't feel as slick as Pixelmator, but if you want something with more power, go for Elements.
  • Reply 14 of 15
    giantgiant Posts: 6,041member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by gastroboy View Post


    Preview can be surprisingly adept at some things (like converting eps or ps to pdf) but cropping and resizing is so arse about face, it's hard to believe it is part of the "easy to use Mac interface".



    Why these relatively simple and mundane functions can't be achieved directly with a straightforward, non-concealed toolset has me puzzled.



    Double click image, Tools -> Adjust Size, select/set size, ok and command+s. It's as brain dead simple in Preview on Leopard as in any other app that does resizing. Maybe you are still on Tiger?
  • Reply 15 of 15
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by giant View Post


    Double click image, Tools -> Adjust Size, select/set size, ok and command+s. It's as brain dead simple in Preview on Leopard as in any other app that does resizing. Maybe you are still on Tiger?



    Yes I am still on Tiger but have checked out Leopard.



    The crop tool is not shown by default, you have to hunt it out and add it to the toolbar.



    Once you add the crop tool to the toolbar you can do the obvious (crop), but clicking in the selection or hitting return or enter does not complete the crop. You need to go back to the menu and select Crop. Why? When this was obviously the reason you chose the tool? After a bit of fiddling I found clicking on the crop tool in the taskbar cropped the area, but this goes unannounced.



    My major gripe is zooming into selection. No zoom tool to drag over the part of the image you want to see larger. Instead in Tiger you select an area first, then "Zoom to selection". If you do it in the wrong order you get a blank screen with no way out but to close the document.



    In Leopard I cannot even find a "Zoom to selection"



    Adjust Size... should be under the Edit menu & does not have a keyboard shortcut, which it should without my having to set one up in the System Preferences.



    Simple contextual menus would get around a lot of these issues. Failing that layout the tools in the open and make them work like other programs' tools.



    P.S. I previously looked at Pixelmator when it was indeed a beta. It is now in full release and it is indeed a beautiful app., somewhat more expensive than I normally pay for shareware but a lot cheaper than the Pro apps.
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