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We all love taking snaps with our phones. And while most new phones come with decent built-in software, there are some great free apps out there that can further enhance your pics. Here are four of our favourites.
Many pro Instagrammers (like Foyin Ogunrombi (@foyinog) in our article) like VSCO (pronounced Visco). It has a huge range of filters, including vintage film enhancements that are really great for Gramming. Unlike most built-in software, you can adjust the filters to your taste if you want a more subtle effect. The app is free, but if you like what you see, or want more options, you can choose to pay for extra features. VSCO has a community element to it, so it’s also a great place to discover photographers whose work you admire.
This is Google’s photo editing app, and it’s pretty impressive. There are 29 different tools you can use, some automatic for easy adjustments, and some with manual options for fine adjustments. You can use Healing to remove unwanted objects or people; you can fill the background; you can adjust colour and add vintage-y elements like scratches. You can use Double Exposure to stack photos in creative ways - the options are vast. The app also remembers what you like to do so you can go back easily and do it again. Available for Android and iOS.
Pixlr’s standout feature is that you can very easily see your original photo to gauge whether your edits have enhanced it or not. It also has variable size settings, which is useful when posting or emailing your pics. There are plenty of tools - including some that allow you to add really artistic effects like watercolour and sketch - and you can mark your favourites for easy access later. Particularly cool is the ability to choose areas of the image to ‘paint’ an effect on. So, for example, you could up the contract in one area, but leave another untouched. You also have great control over the level of effect you apply. While the app is free, you’ll see some ads. It’s available for Android and iOS.
Adobe Photoshop Express
Thinking photo editing, and Photoshop is probably the first name that springs to mind. Fortunately, along with the truly impressive desktop version, Photoshop also has a light mobile version that’s free. It features the best of Photoshop’s tools, and it’s pretty easy to use. If you’re already using Photoshop on your main computer, you can easily swap between devices by uploading the pic to Adobe Creative Cloud. The app allows you to correct common problems like colour and contrast, and also features a range of filters, borders and enhancements to take your photography to the next level. Available for Android and iOS.
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