How to Edit Photos on My Computer

by Michelle Mista
camera image by Christopher Meder from

Whether you take professional-grade photographs with a high-grade digital camera or simple snapshots of your friends and relatives with a point-and-shoot camera, photo editing software is an essential accessory. It allows you to perform tasks like correcting red eye, cropping photos and adding text. Some software even allows you to make digital photo albums to share with your loved ones. Photo editing software for the casual home user is easy to install and use and can help make even the simplest snapshot look stunning.

Step 1

Open the photo editing software of your choice on your computer. Adobe Photoshop Elements is a popular commercial photo editor, aimed at the home consumer. It is available for both Windows and Mac. Paint.NET is a popular, free, Windows-only alternative to Adobe Photoshop Elements. GIMP is an open source photo editor that is free to download, and is compatible with Windows, Mac and Linux.

Step 2

Open the photo that you want to edit on your computer. On most photo editing software, this is done by going to File and Open and navigating to the folder that contains the photo that you would like to edit.

Step 3

Select the a tool to begin editing your photograph. Editing tools vary between photo editing software, but most will include tools to perform basic photo editing such as cropping and color correction.

Save your edits on your photograph. On most photo editing software, this can be done by going to File and Save or pressing "Ctrl" and "S" (command-S on a Mac) on the keyboard.


  • Avoid using a laptop touch pad to edit photographs whenever possible. It is much easier to edit photos using a mouse or a drawing tablet than a laptop touch pad.
  • To prevent loss of an important photo, make a copy of the photo file in your computer's file manager and then edit the copy. This will ensure that you always have a copy of the original as a back-up.


  • Experiment with the all the editing tools that your photo editing software provides. You can achieve many different types of images from the same source photograph using different tools.
  • Photo editing is a graphically intensive application. Using a computer with a good graphics card and lots of memory will optimize your photo editing session.
  • Using a large, color calibrated flat screen monitor in a slightly darkened room is best to achieve true to life colors when editing photos.
  • Save often when working on a large project to prevent loss of work.


Photo Credits

About the Author

Michelle Mista has loved technology since her earliest days. She began her career as an IT professional in the Silicon Valley. Mista combines her love of technology and writing to write about technology for the non-techies.

More Articles