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Cheap alternative to Photoshop?


Mirror Mirror
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Mirror Mirror

Cant believe this hasnt been asked, but Ive had a quick look round and cant find anything.

I just want to edit some lettering on some invitations cards and move a couple of images round, nothing too elaborate.

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Mirror Mirror

Thanks for the answers, had a look at these and they don’t seem that intuitive and will take time to learn.

Is there something a bit simpler? All I want is the ability to cut and paste a few images and text.

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4 hours ago, Mirror Mirror said:

Thanks for the answers, had a look at these and they don’t seem that intuitive and will take time to learn.

Is there something a bit simpler? All I want is the ability to cut and paste a few images and text.

I would second Gimp.

If you are lucky enough you might be able to source an old legit copy of photoshop elements (very cut down version of photoshop) on ebay or someone might have an old disk around. No idea if it will run on latest windows though.
Might be better off paying for photoshop for a month (if you can do that).

I know Photoshop CS5 still works with windows 10 if you can get boxed original versions of that but probably talking a couple of hundred quid.
 

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Mirror Mirror

Thanks for the advice about Gimp so far. It seems to be a very powerful and versatile program, offering far in excess of what I want to do. Ive been struggling now for days to do a couple of simple tasks, but there seems to be conflicting advice on both written and video tutorials, and Ive made very little progress. I dont think Im particularly thick, I have used Autocad, and if I wanted to do something using that, it would take me about 2 minutes. So far I can load the image I want to work on, zoom and move it around, and make a selection, but Ive had no success in deleting, moving or copying any part of the image.

Please please, would any one be kind enough to write a few step by step instructions so that in the example given, I could cut out a bar of the music shown, and copy and paste a different bar into its place, possibly also into a different file / picture? No scaling required, no colour work, no blending of edges.

If I were doing it, Id write, "using either the scissors or a rectangle, select the area you want to delete, or copy, then press enter to make a selection."

After this I get a bit lost. If it were Autocad, you'd then select the move or copy command, and drag and drop the selected area to another location, either by picking reference points for the start and finish locations, or specifying a distance to move and direction. But it doesnt seem to work like that. I also understand the principle of layers, if not exactly how they work with Gimp.

Screen Shot 2021-09-21 at 12.35.47.png

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To overlay an area of image with another (part of an) image.  I would:

  • Rectangle select the area of image I wanted to paste.
  • Ctrl C
  • Select the image I want to paste into with a click (this might be the same image - click outside the selection).
  • Ctrl V
  • The pasted image portion is movable, so press and hold the left mouse button within the rectangle to drag it to the desired position.
  • De-select by clicking outside of the rectangle - job done.
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Mirror Mirror

Excellent! Thank you so much, Im getting somewhere now.

I was confused by the chequered area, left when i cut an area out, but of course, theres no default to make it white or whatever, so Ive also learnt to replace it with something, using either paintbrushes or bucket fill.

Yay!!

 

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You could create a new layer to use as the background, so that your cuts won't need filling.  After creation you should move it to the bottom of the stack and then re-select your original image layer.  Layers are shown on the lower right - just click the one with your image name to the right of the eyeball to select it.  You can also move layers up or down the stack by dragging them up or down this list.

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1 hour ago, Mirror Mirror said:

Thanks, tried that and it obscured everything as the default was 100% opacity. I set it to 0% and that worked, was that correct?

No, you should move the layer to the bottom of the stack.  Conceptually, it's like a stack of papers (or with opacity < 100%, film) - cut out from the top then you'll be able to see the one underneath.  For your application I would have a plain background layer with 100% opacity.  You can either drag the layer in the list on the right to the bottom of the list or use the menus: Layer->Stack->Layer to Bottom.  One gotcha is to ensure that you re-select the layer you want to modify (click the entry in the list on the right) or you'll be cutting things out of the bottom (now invisible) layer.  The little eyeball icon next to the layer name controls its visibility (just click it to turn visibility off/on), so you can quickly see a layer in isolation to more easily see what you have done.

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