How easy is it to get to grips with?
The interface is the first thing you see when launching an app, and with the number of tools and options available in image editors they can be daunting. Some apps make it easier than others. Free Photoshop-a-like GIMP has always had a reputation for being a touch opaque, and opens as a mass of floating palettes, each of which can be brought to the front individually. It does, however, maintain a huge online repository of help. Pixelmator and Photoshop Elements Editor have a palette system too, with tools on the left and layers and effects on the right. PhotoDirector 6 and AfterShot Pro 2 both open with similar dark-interfaced all-in-one windows, switching between modes for organisation and editing. Elements’ organisation is handled by a separate app, the Organiser, from which images can be opened in the Editor, but you don’t have to use it. iPhoto sports a light-grey interface and relies on you importing photos into its library before it can edit them, with its tools and effects appearing on the right-hand side.