Having a professionally designed logo and image advertisement adds credibility to a web site. It gives the impression that the web site is successful and shows that it is important to it’s creators. Paying for a professionally designed logo or image advertisement can be very expensive, but it doesn’t have to be. This article will show you 10 ways that you can create an image advertisement or logo on your own for free, all you need to do is supply the creativity.
There are a variety of different ways to create an advertisement that looks like it was professionally designed. Many of these tools are free for use online or can be downloaded for free to your computer. Most of them have a relatively easy learning curve with adequete support channels if you are having trouble.
1. GIMP (Download)
GIMP is a graphics program that you can install on your computer. It is Open Source Software, meaning it is completely free of charge. GIMP is very similar to Adobe Photoshop, and includes almost all of the most basic features of any graphics manipulation programs including many advanced features. GIMP is also available for most Operating Systems. If you want to edit graphics from a program on your computer, GIMP is the way to go.
Download here: http://www.gimp.org/
2. PIXLR (Online)
PIXLR is an online image editor that allows you to create and edit images as if you were using an image editing program from your computer. It works very well, and the interface is extremely untuitive and user friendly, especially if you have used graphics programs in the past. This great web 2.0 tool is highly recommended for creating and modifying images.
Try It: http://pixlr.com/
3. Splashup (Online)
Splashup is another fantastic online tool that allows you to create graphics and manipulate images. Splashup is extremely similar to PIXLR in it’s user interface, options, and and features. This is another extremely good online graphics editor.
Try it: http://splashup.com/
4. Gimpshop (Download)
Gimpshop is an image editing tool build using GIMP. Gimpshop basically takes the interface of GIMP and attempts to emluate Adobe Photoshop. This software is excellent for users who would like to use the excellent free GIMP software while being able to apply their existing Photoshop knowledge almost immediately. Highly recommended for Gimp users with Photoshop experience.
Download here: http://www.gimpshop.com/
5. Sumo Paint (Online)
Very similar to PIXLR and Splashup, Sumo Paint is an excellent online graphics program. It allows you to create new graphics and has a variety of features. Sumo Paint’s layout is very similar to a traditional graphics program and is highly recommended.
Try it: http://www.sumopaint.com
6. Picnik (Online)
Picnik is another excellent online graphics manipulation tool. Picnik is great of modifying existing photos, or applying cool special effects that other online graphics programs don’t offer. Picnik is not a good tool for creating graphics from scratch, but it is excellent for implementing special effects or final touches.
Try it: http://www.picnik.com/
7. Serif Photoplus and Drawplus (Download)
Serif Photoplus allows you to modify photos and graphics with text, effects, etc. Drawplus enables users to create and modify graphics and offers some cool features not seen in other programs. Photoplus and Drawplus are available for Mac and PC. A quality program, but we prefer GIMP and Gimpshop.
Download here: http://www.freeserifsoftware.com
8. Paint.net (Download)
Paint.net is an open source graphics program similar to Gimp. It is completely free and contains most features of standard graphics online programs. We like this program, but GIMP is the preferred option. Paint.net also requires the Microsoft.NET framework and only works on Microsoft operating systems.
Download here: http://www.getpaint.net
9. Lightbox (Download)
Lightbox is a program specializing in photograph manipluation. It is not a good tool for designing graphics from scratch, but has excellent touch-up features for applying finishing touches and effects.
Download here: http://www.lightboxeditor.com
10. Online Image Editor
Online Image Editor is similar to PIXLR, Splashup, and Sumo Paint except there are not nearly as many features and the user interface is not as intuitive. This will get the job done, but it is reminiscent of a Microsoft Paint program from the 90′s. We reccommend using PIXLR, Splashup, or Sumo Paint for online graphics.
Try it: http://www.online-image-editor.com
All of these tools are useful in some way for graphics manipulation, especially if you don’t have access to higher end tools such as Adobe Photoshop or Fireworks.