Top List of Open Source Drawing Software

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If you’re looking for a free drawing program that offers more capabilities then Microsoft paint, yet is not as advanced as a 3D platform, there are many available. Many of these programs are great for drawing, sketching, coloring, painting, and retouching images. Several options are listed below and are 100% free!

  • DrawPlus Starter Edition – Is an excellent graphic and drawing software, containing tools like pencils, pens and brushes. It also includes shape-blending and excellent color manipulation. It’s a great free platform available to graphic designers.
  • Artrage – Using this software is supposed to be like drawing and painting on paper. There are 20 painting tools you can use such as oil paint and watercolor. The trial version does not expire however your saved image resolutions and formats are limited unless you upgrade your version.
  • Chasys Draw IES – is a photo editing and drawing software with tons of tools and options. The interface contains a unique feature which makes tools partially transparent until you hover over them with your mouse. Giving you the ability to have many tools open at once without being too distracting while you work.
  • SmoothDraw – This great drawing software is designed for free-hand artists. It supports multiple tools such as ink-flow, and brushes. The program is intuitive and easy to use, yet it contains more functionality then a Microsoft paint program or something similar.
  • Pinta – this software is very simple and easy to use. It’s great for beginners for this reason and has capabilities ranging from photo editing to freehand drawing. It also has unlimited undo, which is a nice feature.

Open source drawing programs range from a wide variety containing many features and tools. Some are designed with more professional artists in mind while others mimic simple platforms similar to Microsoft paint and are ideal for beginners. These various programs contain a plethora of options that may only be required by the most advanced users, however even the advanced programs are capable of simple photo editing and drawing when required.

Take it upon yourself to download and test any of the free options available and see which one you work best with. It isn’t always the “best” program that will give the best results, but rather the program that you are most comfortable using. An open source drawing software can have all of the functionality in the world, but if you fail to create your best work on that platform, it’s worthless to you. Things like the layout, ease of use, and overall functionality will all play a role on your enjoyment and acceptance level.

Don’t forget that many open source software packages’ goals are to get you to upgrade to a “full” or “premium” version of their software with more capabilities and options, but if you are not enjoying the base or free version, chances are you won’t enjoy the upgraded version as well. You can download several different programs and try them for free before deciding which drawing software is best for you.

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Best Open Source Video Editing Tools

Published / by Open Source Consortium

Video Pad Open Source Video Editor

There are many free video editing tools available that provide great functionality. These tools are easily downloadable and there are a wide array of options present within each software package. Whether your needs are for basic video editing or more professional editing, the tools listed below offer an editing solution that has no cost while providing a package that can be used for a wide variety of video editing situations.

  1. Lightworks – Lightworks’ claim to fame is that it can do so much more than your basic video editing software. It’s been used in movies such as The King’s Speech and Road to Perdition. This is undoubtedly professional video editing software which will take time to master. Its functionality is far more capable then the average user will require and it’s free.
  2. VideoPad Video Editor – This software is simple to use, even if you are new to video editing. However it does not have the same amount of features as Lightworks. Because of its limited features, it may be best suited for someone new to video editing who only intends to do basic changes. If you have some experience in video editing and plan to do some professional work, this may not be the solution for you.
  3. Avidemux – This software is ideal for smaller tasks. It comprises a set of tools for everyday video editing such as, trimming footage, applying filters and effects, and converting between formats. Yet another basic platform available for free.
  4. Wondershare Filmora – An easy-to-use video editing tool for your Windows operating systems. It supports various video formats such as MP4, AVI, MOV, etc. You can crop, trim, cut and combine videos as you need to. It’s a great platform for the average video editing user who intends to do standard edits on their videos.
  5. VirtualDub – Powerful free video editing software for Windows. It allows you a wide set of editing options, including addition of audio, video splitting and compression. It also has batch-processing capabilities if you are someone who works with a large amount of files.

If you are looking for a free video editing software, there are tons of different options available. Try several and see which one is easiest for you to use. As your editing skills develop, you can look for different free software packages that offer more capabilities or end up buying something that meets your needs. Ultimately, most beginner and intermediate video editors should be able to find free software that can perform everything they need it to. Once you are editing at a higher level, you may have trouble finding an open source package that satisfies you, but with options like Lightworks available, it seems plausible to think that a free option may still be possible.

Whether you are posting on YouTube, or doing professional video editing, open source video editing options deserve some attention. With free options available that have been used to edit major motion pictures, it becomes hard to justify the cost associated with some software that charges upfront or monthly fees. In the end it will come down to the user, and how advanced they intend to go with their software editing requirements.

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List of Open Source Photo Editing Software

Published / by Open Source Consortium


There are many free photo editing software options available for someone looking to do basic or sophisticated image work. Adobe Photoshop is the reigning king in this space, however not everyone wants to pay for their editing software, especially when there are free options available. Below are several alternative options that are a little lighter on the wallet, many of which have the same capabilities as the expensive “paid for” software packages.

  • Gimp – Gimp packs as many features as Photoshop itself and supports multiple operating systems, such as Windows and Linux. The interface can be customized by the user but still can be hard to get accustomed to if the user has experience with more traditional photo editing platforms. Regardless, it’s free and contains a ton of features.
  • Paint – is a great free photo editing tool that contains a wide variety of features. Even though it does not contain the same amount of editing abilities as Adobe’s Photoshop or GIMP, it contains the important ones. If you aren’t doing any professional photo work, this is a great package to utilize.
  • Pixlr Editor – A webapp that offers many photo editing features such as layering, effects, resizing, cropping, etc. The fact that it runs in your browser alone makes it a great resource if you are somewhere without your editing software and need to make some quick changes.
  • PhotoScape – Contains a wealth of features such as animated GIF creation and photo splitting and merging. Although great for a beginner, even an experienced photo editor should be able to get great results.
  • Fotor – this software is more of a photo enhancer then a photo editor; however it contains some nice features and gives the ability to really make photos look vibrant. It contains a batch processing tool that allows you to upload many photos at once; making mass edits easier and quicker.

There are many more open source photo editing software options available, ranging in a wide variety of capabilities and complexities. These are just a few of the quality programs that can be had for free. Although all aren’t easy to use, a lot of them are intuitive in nature and can provide great alternatives to costly photo editing software.

Whether you are a professional graphic designer or photographer, or just an amateur looking to do some basic photo creation and editing, one should be able to achieve a lot given the current free programs available. Try several at a time and see which meet your needs. You may find that you like a particular software for cropping and merging, while you may prefer completely different software for color manipulation. The good news is that since these options are free, you can have multiple software programs installed at no cost to you.

If you are new to photo editing, it makes sense to hone your skills on open source software before paying anything to upgrade your capabilities. You need to crawl before you can walk, and many of the open source options will have you running in no time.

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