Archives For Photoshop


In youth ministry today creating graphics has become a necessity.  Maybe you need them for your slides, your making a flyer, or just for a new cover image on your Facebook page, graphics touch so much of what we do.  Not all of us have the budget to cover Photoshop, so I thought I would cover a few options out there to help make creating and editing graphics a little easier.  Even if you don’t feel like you are the most creative person, these tools can help you look like a pro.


Canva is a great and easy to use way to create great looking graphics. They have a number of pre-defined templates you can start with (social media images, flyers, posters, business cards, invitations, collages and more) or you can design a custom one. You can upload your own images, use their stock images or buy premium stock images from their library to use in your projects. The cost is free so it’s hard to argue with that. As a bonus they have some great tutorials if you are new to design that will help teach you about using colors, fonts and more.


If you are used to working with photoshop and are looking for something that’s closer to that experience you might like It has a more traditional photoshop like screen with your toolbox floating on your canvas.  It also allows you to upload your photos for use in your projects, but they don’t have the library of included images like Canva does, but you can start with a URL to an image if you’ve already found one online you like. It’s also a free tool, but to get the most out of it, you need to create an account.  They also have some more basic design tools with Pixlr Express and Pixlr-o-Matic.  These are really designed for photos that allow basic cleanup, filters and boarders.  They also have some mobile apps you might be interested in, you can get links HERE.


BeFunky is another Free service that allows you to edit photos and turn them into graphics that you can use for slides, flyers or elsewhere. They do have a paid version that gives you more filters, graphics and frames to use, but the FREE level still is robust. They also have mobile apps you can use on iOS (free or pro) or Android.

What tools do you use?

In our next post we’ll explore more mobile options.

Image Credit: geralt

Photoshop Alternatives

Chris —  April 21, 2009 — Leave a comment

I got an question submitted to the site the other day from Haley about Photoshop alternatives and thought there may be others with similar questions.  (Haley, I tried to write you back, but your email kept bouncing, hopefully this will help you out.)

Photoshop is a really powerful program, but it comes with a price tag (Amazon lists Adobe Photoshop CS4 at $641.99), but the good news is there are a lot of cheap (or free) alternatives that may work for you.

One option is just to go with Photoshop Elements (PC or Mac) at only $74.99 is considerably cheaper, but can still give you most of the functions that those of us who don’t make a live as graphic designers need.  It’s heavy in photo editing features, but still gives some of the advanced images tools as well.

Another option that is closer to full blown Photoshop is called GIMP.  GIMP stands for GNU Image Manipulation Program, and is an Open Source project so the cost to you is nothing.  Remember you get what you pay for, and it’s definitely not as polished as Photoshop, but is incredible full featured for a free program.  You can find the PC version HERE.  And Mac you can get the basic version HERE, but if you want a version that doesn’t require X11, I would check out SeeShore (If you don’t know what X11 is, stick with SeeShore).

There are some other cheap or free options depending what platform you’re on:

I know I’m only scratching the surface here.  What other options have you’ve found that might help Haley out?