Welcome back from Reading Week!

Many students at OCAD struggle with mastering Photoshop – and understandably so! While a very powerful tool, Photoshop is also extremely complicated and often difficult to use. There are some alternatives to Photoshop which can help aid you in understanding and having the ability to use it more effectively and efficiently!

Best part: they’re free!

Photography students are a part of the Laptop Program and thus have access to Photoshop and the Creative Cloud suite, the following programs are not replacements but rather easier ways to help you understand the complexity of Photoshop.


1. GIMP – A program that is installed and can be used on Win/OSX/Linux

2. Adobe Photoshop Express Editor – Similar layout to Photoshop but simplified, it works in your browser so no need to install anything (but you’ll need a wifi connection!)

3. Pixlr – This has 3 different options for in-browser editing: Editor, Express, and O-Matic!

4. Paint.NET – Great beginner software¬†than runs for Windows only. Needs a download/install but it’s safe and easy to use!


There are a few great courses that OCAD offers to help you with the digital side of art! Courses posted are for the 2014/25 school year and are subject to change for next year!

Introductory Digital

Digital Imaging II

Photography: Digital Studio

Aesthetics of Editing (focuses on video)

Introduction to Digital Practices: Globalization

Digital Printmaking Studio

Painting and Digital Imaging I (focuses on digital painting)