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Paint.NET is free image and photo editing software with special effects.

License: FreewarePublisher: Rick Brewster

OS: Windows 7, Vista, XP

Update: 2014-02-25 20:52:31Latest Version: 3.5.11

Paint.NET – Easy-To-Use Yet Powerful Image Editor

While nowadays there are complex pieces of software like Adobe Photoshop CS4 or Corel Draw which are professional options for editing and creating all sorts of images by using their unique tools and possibilities, there are still many users who seem to feel these programs are too much for them and prefer to opt for more basic software solutions which can meet their needs without much complexity. One of the image edition applications that has recently won many fans among this sort of users is Paint.NET: an attractive and functional graphic editor that can be classified as "intermediate" if we consider the multiplicity of options that offer professional applications and the few basic tools that programs such as the immortal Windows Paint offer. It is therefore some kind of "advanced Paint” with extremely attractive extra functions. Today I'm going to tell you about its most important features and functionalities.

Class Project Evolves Into Powerful App
Paint.NET was originally developed as a student project at the Washington State University, in its first steps Paint.NET was intended to be a simple replacement for Microsoft Paint, but later evolved into a powerful editor with a reasonable range of tools and functions, able to handle layers, blending, transparency, and with plugins support. As it can be deduced from its name, this easy to use image edition application was developed under the .NET Framework, so it can use all the features of Windows with the power of .NET.

Paint.NET brings a lot of interesting features and tools for working with images and photos, allowing us to work faster thanks to the engine that runs on the Microsoft’s .NET Framwork which gives us greater stability, efficiency and at the same time saving system resources without requiring a powerful hardware.Thus, the program retains the simplicity of a basic image editor with drawing tools like pencil, paintbrush, selection options, shapes, text tool, eraser and all other tools we can usually find in programs like MS Paint, but what it really makes Paint.NET different is the addition of powerful new features like History which enables us to undo and redo an unlimited number of  actions, we can do it just by clicking Undo/Redo in the Edit menu or we can also do it graphically, having a detailed view of each performed action, by enabling it in the Window menu or by pressing the F6 key.

Paint.NET also has the ability to handle multiple layers, just like in Photoshop we can apply different qualities and effects to them. As you can see in the next screenshot, options are countless.

Photo Tools
Regarding photo retouching, Paint.NET brings a lot of filters and special effects to apply to our pictures, we can make a lot of modifications like cloning determined areas in order to fix errors, make several kind of adjustments like turning pictures to sepia.

And we can also apply a lot of effects which are arranged by categories. Just to test one I applied Ink Sketch to see how it works. It is really amazing how many things one can do with Paint.NET.

Details & Extras
One interesting detail is that Paint.NET has support for the acquisition of images from digital cameras or scanners.
As a plus, we can make vectorial drawings with the Line/Curve tool, and its potential is similar to programs such as Freehand or Illustrator.

Within the Colors box we will find the way to switch colors with absolute freedom, choosing from predefined ones or making our own by moving the cursor in the colors circle, there are also other more complex methods accessible by clicking the More button.

Final Words
To sum up I should say that Paint.NET offers us the pleasant simplicity of a basic and simple image editor, but adding some advanced features that allow anyone to perform any kind of image editing tasks through powerful tools that maximize the usefulness of the program. To my humble opinion, this is the perfect balance between the simplicity of a basic application and the potency of a complex image editor. The best of all, it is totally for free, couldn't ask for more!!

Have you tried Paint.NET? If so, we would be very pleased to read your opinion in the comments section below.

Author: Lucas Artigas Review on: Paint.NET 3.36

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