Photo Editing Software

Picasa Since I give Photo Seminars I like to acquaint myself with different photo editing programs.  There are lots of free editors on the market.  Some are packaged with your camera or printer. Some are good and some are bad.  Google’s Picasa seems to be a popular application and it’s free, so I gave it a try just so I could broaden my knowledge.

I downloaded the program, and installed it which went smoothly.  The problem started immediately after install when it scanned my computer for pictures.  Since I have over 50,000 this took a very long time.  I noticed that the photo folders were being duplicated and the reason was that it also scanned my external hard drive, without my permission I might add.  After that it started rescanning all the imported photos for face recognition which took forever.  This was also done without my permission. 

The nightmare was, that in the process of all this, some of my most valuable photo folders completely disappeared from my hard drive!  They had also been moved on my external hard drive.  This little experiment took me about a week to correct and get everything back to normal.

Long story short, I won’t recommend Picasa to any of my friends, customers or in my seminars.  There is no reason why any program has to be that invasive and do things without asking you first!

If you have upgraded to Windows 7 there is a program included called “Windows Live Photo Gallery” which is easy to use and gives you all the basic tools to edit your pictures.  Click the Start button, then All Programs and open the Windows Live Folder.

The most talked about photo program in the world is Adobe’s Photo Shop but it costs $700.  The learning curve is steep and so is the price.  There are two other alternatives for those who are more advanced with photography.  Adobe’s Photo Shop Elements which costs $80 to $100 and Corel’s Paint Shop Photo Pro, priced the same.


I have used this program to edit my photos since the day it was born, some 14 years ago, and believe it just can’t be beat.

No camera produces a perfect photo, no matter how expensive it is.  If you really want your photos to look the best they can look, then I highly recommend Paint Shop Photo Pro. You can download a fully functional 30 day trial Here.

There are those purists who claim that fixing a photo is cheating and to that I say “hog wash!” Post editing is half the fun of photography.  There’s a difference between taking a photo and making a photo.