What are the best photo and video editing software for a novice?

asked by Elliot Langdown
1078 contributors
33 solutions
  1. 75

    #1Canva

    Canva

    Canva is a graphics design tool where users can create professional designs by curating photos, text, animations, stickers, borders, frames and more. It also features albums and scrapbooks where users may collaborate with their friends. 

    Apps

    Web, Android, iOS

    Free- Varies by plan

    Jacob Flores
    Written on October 2, 2017
    "This is a great graphics editor and design suite. From the jump, it gives you plenty of default templates to work with which make the process of creating much easier. You don't run into many roadblocks if you are just vaguely familiar with photoshop, or paint. A lot of the same tools and commands you are used to, are all available with Canva. This is a pretty solid solution for a graphic design novice. "
  2. 65

    #2iMovie

    iMovie

    iMovie is a video editing software application. Browse your clips and create Hollywood-style trailers and stunning 4K-resolution movies. You can even start editing on iPhone or iPad, then finish on your Mac.

    Software

    Mac, iOS

    Free

    Nicholas Freeman
    Written on October 4, 2017
    "I needed to render some videos before uploading them to youtube so I picked up imovie. The feature set is very extensive, but still fairly easy to use. I was able to figure out how to put different clips together, and adjust everything I needed fairly quickly. Great program."
  3. 60

    #3Photoscape X

    Photoscape X

    Photoscape X is a free and easy-to-use photo editing software which allows you to enhance and fix your photos with its features from filters, tools, and special effects. This is available in 10 languages. 

    Software

    Windows, Mac

    Free

    Phillip Carroll
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "Photoscape is an indispensably powerful photo editing and manipulation tool. The features rival any top photo editing software on the market. The interface takes some getting used to especially if the user already well versed in traditional and contemporary photo editing software. Photoscape is available across Mac and windows desktop platforms. This software is simple enough to use that even just playing with settings can result in beautifully manipulated photographs. "
  1. 58

    #4Windows Movie Maker

    Windows Movie Maker
    With Windows Movie Maker, you can quickly turn your photos and videos into polished movies. Add special effects, transitions, sound, and captions to help tell your story. Share the movie with friends and family.
    Software

    Windows

    Free

    Marcos Peña
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "This is one of the worst movie editing softwares. It is only useful if you somehow can't install anything else."
  2. 54

    #5VEGAS Pro 16

    VEGAS Pro 16

    VEGAS Pro 16 is a professional video editing software used by professional filmmakers. It is capable of editing professional video and audio material and exporting outputs with a high-resolution quality of up to 4K.

    Software

    Windows

    $599- Free trial available

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  3. 50

    #6VSCO

    VSCO
    VSCO is a mobile application developed by Visual Supply Company for taking photos, editing them with a variety of settings and filters, and sharing them. Users can join a creative community with no public followers, likes, or comments. 
    Apps

    Android, iOS

    Free- with in-app purchases

    Rebecca Ross
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "VSCO has really helped me with my photos. It is a good app to help you share good, edited photos. There is also a neat community that does not run on likes and comments so it is kind of cool to have that."
  4. 48

    #7Camtasia

    Camtasia

    Camtasia is a video-editor that enables users to produce stunning videos without being a professional video editor. This drag-and-drop editor easily lets users create remarkable videos by adding eye-catching animations, music, and more.

    Software

    Windows, Mac

    $249

    Javier Alvarado
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "I use Camtasia for my everyday video editing needs. I work heavily with post production video and need to make sure everything flow and looks clean. Camtasia gives me the tools that I need to clean up imperfect video capture and make is look wonderful."
  5. 47

    #8Snapseed

    Snapseed

    Snapseed is a complete and professional photo-editing software application developed by Google that will upgrade your regular photos, with lots of filters and special effects. It has 29 tools like healing, brush, structure, HDR, etc.

    Apps

    Android, iOS

    Free

    Joshua Harvey
    Written on October 2, 2017
    "What is the best photo and video editing software for a novice? Tip it is Snapseed which can be found on Googleplay."
  6. 44

    #9Filmora

    Filmora

    Filmora is a simply elegant video editing software geared toward beginner, novice, and casual users. Anyone can learn to use this software, regardless of their skill level, and the end results look and sound fantastic.

    Software

    Windows, Mac

    Free- Varies by plan

    Jordan Phillips
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "I was looking to take my photo editing skills to the next level. A friend of mine recommended a program called Filmora that I should try to help me learn more. I bought the software and I found tons of great tips and knowledge to help me out. Everything was helpful and my photos and videos now look better than ever. "
  7. 42

    #10Prisma

    Prisma
    Prisma is a photo-editing app that lets users transform their photos into art using the style of famous artists like Munk and Picasso, as well as world famous ornaments and patterns. It features more than 300 filters to choose from.
    Apps

    iOS, Android

    Free- with in-app purchases

    Jonathan Wagner
    Written on October 2, 2017
    "app with simple to use features"
  8. 41

    #11BeFunky

    BeFunky

    This free photo editor allows users to make collages, touch up photos using teeth whiter, red-eye reduction, etc., and add effects. The BeFunky app also comes with editing tools to let you adjust light, clarity, exposure, saturation, etc.

    Apps

    Web, iOS, Android

    Free

    Samantha Sanders
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "This is a great starting point for any wannabe photo editor or graphic designer who has little or no experience with photoshop or sketchbook skills. The easy inbuilt customizable graphic designs and clean user interface make it a breeze to express ideas well and also learn along the way. The online editor is a great way to quickly touch up a photo or two without having to wrestle with software installation and running. The best part is that the basic version of this tool is free, provides tutorials to a beginner enthusiast and is even available in the form of a mobile app!"
  9. 39

    #12Dreamscope

    Dreamscope
    Dreamscope is a photo editor and community that applies cutting-edge Artificial Intelligence to turn your pictures into paintings. Make your photos look like paintings by Picasso, Van Gogh, or Monet.
    Apps

    Web, iOS, Android

    Free

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  10. 36

    #13PhotoWorks

    PhotoWorks

    PhotoWorks is a photo editing software which is easy to use offering high-level of photo retouching. It has ready-made presets to make it easier for you to enhance your photo and even remove unwanted details. 

    Software

    Windows

    $27.5- Free trial available

    Helen Smith
    Written on May 21, 2019
    "Being new to photo editing, I wanted some simple and at the same time powerful image editor. Of course, I tried well-known software, but found it way too complicated. Besides, I was interested in a life-time license and was going to pay for it once. So I went for a few trials and finally picked PhotoWorks. It meets all my needs. "
  11. 36

    #14VideoPad Video Editor

    VideoPad Video Editor

    VideoPad by NCH Software is a basic video editing program designed to be intuitive that has many of the tools and features. It also supports different video formats such as avi, wmv, mpv, divx, and many more.

    Software

    Windows, Mac

    Free

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  12. 36

    #15Afterlight

    Afterlight
    Afterlight is a free image editing app with a simple design to help users enhance their photos with its powerful tools, filters, textures, and frames. Some of its features can also be bought which is not available in the free version. 
    Apps

    Android

    Free- with-in app purchases.

    Alejandra Venegas
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "This app is pretty good for a casual user. It lacks more sophisticated things like brush tools, but it is cheap so if you need to only do the basic stuff then it is worth the $0.99. Beware--the app will still offer you in-app purchases, which can get a little annoying."
  13. 34

    #16PicMonkey

    PicMonkey

    PicMonkey is a creative tool for photo editing and graphic design so you can show your creativity and your style. The photo editing tool is available online and on iOS and Android devices.

    Online Tools

    Free- Varies by plan

    Barbara Lewis
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "I have used this online service many times and it does work well for basic needs when not a full member. There are many more advanced features available to those that pay for the membership. I like what this site provides for editing photos, and you do get quite a bit for free."
  14. 31

    #17MAGIX Movie Edit Pro

    MAGIX Movie Edit Pro

    MAGIX Movie Edit Pro allows you to create professional-looking videos. This video editing software contains flexible templates, tools for effects, background music and more. It is also designed with a simple storyboard and timeline.

    Software

    Windows

    $69.99- Free trial available

    Heather Flores
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "This is an excellent solution for movie editing. There are many tools at your disposal and support is available when you need it. There are several versions to choose from and all well priced. "
  15. 29

    #18VivaVideo

    VivaVideo

    VivaVideo is a free video editing app where you can easily create professional-looking video stories within a few taps, such as montage, memes, collage, loop clips and duet videos. The app is available on Android and iOS devices.

    Apps

    Android, iOS

    Free- with in-app purchases

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  16. 28

    #19Magix Photo Manager

    Magix Photo Manager
    Photo Manager lets you directly import photos from your camera, apply minor optimizations and create slideshows to share with friends and family.
    Software

    Windows

    Free

    Samantha Jordan
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "If you like editing your photos and videos but you're new at it this is the program for you. It is simple and easy to use and your photos will come out looking professionally edited. I recommend this and its free so why not give it a shot."
  17. 25

    #20VSDC Free Video Editor

    VSDC Free Video Editor

    VSDC is a non-linear free video editor. This software helps you visualize your creativity. VSDC supports all the most popular codecs, filters and video formats.

    Software

    Windows

    Free

    Carol Reynolds
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "This is a good program for beginners, easy to use and allows you to edit your video clips easily. You can edit as much or as little as you like, easy to follow."
  18. 24

    #21VideoShow

    VideoShow

    VideoShow is one of the most powerful movie editor and slideshow intro maker apps in the whole world, where you can share no crop videos among YouTube, Instagram, Facebook-WhatsApp, Google+, Vine, Snapchat, Facebook, Line, and many more.

    Apps

    Android, iOS

    Free- with in-app purchases

    Lee Sun
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "I use this app to edit my surfing videos and it works great. I have a good amount of video editing experience on my desktop, so it was easy for me to adjust to the app on my phone. My friends think I am a genius! Hah! Fooled them again!"
  19. 23

    #22Aviary

    Aviary

    Aviary is a photo editing app that gives users options to enhance, accessorize and apply effects in their photos and share them on social media. It is developed by Aviary Inc. and is currently available for Android devices only. 

    Apps

    Android

    Free

    Aaron Bowman
    Written on May 11, 2017
    "Aviary is a photo and video editing software or app in this case it has dozens of ways to edit your photos or videos as well as enhance them or apply unique cool effects with just a tap of your finger. It's very easy to do and great for a novice editor who may not have much experience in this area."
  20. 19

    #23Hitfilm Express

    Hitfilm Express

    HitFilm is a free motion graphics and video editing software that enables users to color grade, edit videos, and compose, all on the same software. It also has advanced tracking and 3D modeling tools.

    Software

    Windows, Mac

    Free

    Ruth Patel
    Written on February 11, 2017
    "For a free software, I think this does a great job. It has a bit of a learning curve, but not having to pay for things when you are just learning is important for me. I'd recommend people to try this if you're working with video editing. For photo editing, I think you need another software because I haven't been able to find a way to edit photos. "
  21. 18

    #24OpenShot

    OpenShot
    OpenShot is easy to use, quick to learn, and powerful free video editor. It supports various audio, photo, and video formats, and it features unlimited tracks and layers. It is available for platforms including Linux, Windows, and Mac.
    Software

    Windows, Mac, Linux

    Free

    Jonathan Butler
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "Im not sure how much I would trust this software. The features are laid out pretty cleanly but I am not sure if it is the best program for a beginner."
  22. 16

    #25Avidemux

    Avidemux
    Avidemux is a free video editor for Windows, Mac, Linux and more. It has tools like cutting, filtering and encoding. It also supports video types, including AVI, DVD, MPEG, MP4 and ASF via codecs. 
    Software

    Windows, Mac, Linux

    Free

    Anthony Davis
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "Avidemux is an easy to use video editor, which makes it great for beginners. Best of all, too, its free, so novices don't have to invest any money to see if its a good fit!"
  23. 15

    #26Adobe Photoshop Elements

    Adobe Photoshop Elements

    Adobe Photoshop Elements is a photo editing software which can automatically organize your photos and make them look stunning with its intelligent photo editing options. It now also has enhanced guided edits. 

    Software

    Windows, Mac

    $99.99

    Elizabeth Lawson
    Written on September 30, 2017
    "I would rate this software at a top level. As a photography student I used the line of Adobe products as I was learning and they were quite user friendly. There are plenty of tools that help you organize, edit, and share your photographs. It is a must have program for beginners."
  24. 13

    #27GoPro Quik

    GoPro Quik
    With Quik, you can edit and enjoy your GoPro photos and videos. Import your film and create awesome videos synced to music in a few steps.
    Software

    Windows

    Free

    Carol Xiao
    Written on September 29, 2017
    "I think this is a good but not great solution as it is just for go pro and not for all video. I like what it offers but it obviously has some limitations."
  25. 13

    #28Pixia

    Pixia

    Pixia is the English version of a famous Japanese free painting and retouch software for full-color graphic, with masks and layer functions. This program also allows users to customize their own brush tips for desired effects.

    Software

    Windows

    Free

    Danielle Spencer
    Written on September 18, 2017
    "The main page was a little daunting because the first things I read were various bugs and problems including fatal errors in the previous version. I clicked on the tutorials menu item but I didn't find anything very useful. If I were a user who just wanted something easy and intuitive to use, I think I would look elsewhere."
  26. 11

    #29Phixr Photo Editor

    Phixr Photo Editor

    Phixr is an in-browser online photo editor with tons of filters, effects and other features as well as excellent Facebook integration.

    Software

    Web

    Free

    Louis Rose
    Written on November 6, 2017
    "Phixr is a free online photo editor with all the features you will ever need as well as many fun ones that allowed me to add humorous effects to edited photos of friends. With seamless Facebook integration, I believe most will find this photo editor all they need to make their photos stand out in any way needed."
  27. 7

    #30LunaPic

    LunaPic

    LunaPic is a great online photo editor. Easy to use with cool effects. Create your own Art instantly online for Free.

    Websites

    Free

    Paridhi Sengupta
    Written on September 18, 2017
    "LunaPic is my first real photo and video editing software. I enjoy getting really creative with it using its easy to understand features. As long as ads don't bother you much, this is a probably the best basic free photo and video editing software that is available online. It is easy, simple, and nearly idiot proof to use. "
  28. 4

    #31Kapwing

    Kapwing

    Kapwing is an online image, GIF, and video editor developed by Eric Lu and Julia Enthoven in 2017. It can also make sound effects, montage, video collage and stop-motion effect. The video file can be from Instagram, Twitter or Facebook. 

    Online Tools

    Free

    Jean Rodriguez
    Written on January 7, 2018
    "Super easy to upload and customize your images as long as you're not wanting something too high tech. It does most of the heavy lifting for you so you can't make it as personalized as you would if you were doing it all on your own, but for someone with zero photoshop skills this has been a lifesaver."
  29. 4

    #32Luminar

    Luminar

    Luminar is an image editing software for Windows and Mac that allows you to edit pictures with an easy-to-use interface. It allows you to apply filters, process raw images, shift hues, and much more. 

    Software

    Mac, Windows

    $69

    Dolores Vásquez
    Written on January 9, 2018
    "This software is very nice for a novice photographer! I started out just a month ago and it was very overwhelming to find something that I could use for editing my photos. Luminar is very nice because the looks of it is simplified. I like the feature of the easy filters that I can apply for a quick simple touch to my photos!"
  30. 0

    #33Adobe Premiere Rush

    Adobe Premiere Rush

    Adobe Premiere Rush is a software by Adobe which allows users to feed their channels with a stream of quality content and contains a built-in video editor. The software allows sharing to multiple social channels.

    Software

    Windows

    $9.99- Varies by plan

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Summary

Best What are the best photo and video editing software for a novice
RankSolutionsTypeVotesPrice
1CanvaApps 75 Free
2iMovieSoftware 65 Free
3Photoscape XSoftware 60 Free
4Windows Movie MakerSoftware 58 Free
5VEGAS Pro 16Software 54 Paid
6VSCO Apps 50 Free
7CamtasiaSoftware 48 Paid
8Snapseed Apps 47 Free
9FilmoraSoftware 44 Free
10PrismaApps 42 Free
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