Mobile photography continues to be increasingly popular due to social media applications like Instagram. In this age of social media, filters are present to enhance a photograph but sometimes editing a photo manually is the best way to achieve the desired results.
As smartphones have gotten more powerful over the years, mobile photo editing applications are getting better as well. These apps have added features such as curves and white balance.
While these features are commonly found in PC-based photo editing applications, they haven’t been readily available on mobile devices. But times, as they say, are a-changing and here are some of the best mobile photo editing apps on the market that are free to use.
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Enlight Pixaloop has been around for quite some time now and it has been a great companion for mobile photo editing. The app comes with lots of cool features such as making still images move, taking double exposures, adding video effects and many more.
It clearly stays true to its claim to “breathe life into photos”.
The only drawback to this app, if any, is that some of the features are “pro” features that require a subscription. Shutterbugs who want to use the app’s full suite of tools can opt to pay US$3.99 per month or a one-time payment of $59.99.
When talking about photo editing software, Adobe Photoshop is probably one of the first applications that come to mind. The software has been a staple for professional-grade editing for more than a decade.
A lighter version of the software – Photoshop Express – is now available for photo editing on the go.
While not as powerful as the full-blown desktop version of the software, Photoshop Express can handle all of the basic editing tasks such as cropping, white balance adjustment, and curves adjustment without any hiccups. There is also a customizable preset option for edits on the go.
It should be noted that Photoshop Express does not support working with layers, however, Adobe offers another mobile app – Photoshop Mix – for those kinds of tasks.
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Google bought Snapseed a few years ago and it is one of the best photo editing apps available. The simple interface, great features, and support for RAW photo editing make it great for professional and beginning photographers alike.
Filters are available for quick social media edits. If one wants to be more in-depth with editing, the slider controls make fine-tuning photos a breeze.
The best part with Snapseed is it is totally free, unlike other applications that offer a free version with limited features. However, unlike other apps, it is rarely updated. In fact, its most recent update in March was the first one since its last 2018 update.
Adobe Lightroom CC
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Just like Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom CC is already a staple in the photography industry. The seamless integration of the mobile app and the desktop application makes it worth getting.
However, there are in-app purchases required to fully maximize the capabilities of the app.
The mobile Lightroom can do almost everything that the desktop version is capable of doing except for the heavy tasks. But for exposure adjustment and other detailed settings, the mobile version works fine.
For portrait photographers, fixing blemishes, clearing the eyes and balancing the skin tone is very much workable. Plus the direct to social media upload is a neat feature for everyone.
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Instagram has built-in editing tools that are enough for social media posts. The features are great, but it has limited filters. This is where VSCO Cam comes in handy, as it has a lot of basic editing options but it became famous for its film-like filters.
There was even a time wherein VSCO filters were the trend. Lightroom even has an add-on that includes a VSCO preset library for quick edits.
The professional grading options and easy to maneuver controls make it one of the best companions for budding photographers and professionals.
VSCO is available for free, but there are in-app purchases for more features.
Featured image courtesy of Retha Ferguson/Pexels