In early 2012, Brian Terry and Justin Huff, former Picnik engineers, launched PicMonkey, a popular online photo editing program with both free and pay to use [Royale] options.
In the beginning …
Before using PicMonkey, I had no training on using any sort of photo editing software. My only experience was with the free program that came with my camera, which was very basic, and I only ever messed around with it a little, not having any clue on how to use it to it’s full potential.
After starting my business later in 2012, I quickly realized I needed to be able to produce good looking photo’s for my blog and product listings. I started using the free version of PicMonkey, and continued to use it for free for about 2 years.
Why I pay the subscription …
In the 2 years I used PicMonkey for free, there were very few times I missed not being able to use the Royale features. All the basic editing features are free. In the 8 other menus, there are many free options to choose from. The only feature I missed was the cloning tool.
So, with so many free tools available, why pay for the subscription?
Well, the cloning tool is very handy, and I do use it quite a bit to clean up little bits of fluff and missed threads. But the main reason I decided to start paying was simply to support the company. In about 2014, I realized I was using PicMonkey every week for something. I have no idea what is involved with creating a program like this, but I’m sure it takes more than a few hours on a weekend just to maintain it, much less to build and continually add new content. For me, it was a god-send; when you’re trying to build a business with a microscope budget, you need every money saving option you can find.
One of the biggest benefits now for Royale uses is the ability to save images to the Hub. From here images can be retrieved and edited.
But is it easy to use & does it do a good job …
With no training, I was able to work out most of the tools very quickly and easily. There are a number of tools in the Effects menu that I’m not sure about, but I don’t often need to use them much. PicMonkey has created many tutorials to help users navigate the different tools to get the best out of them. They are easy to follow and always fun.
Maybe a professional photographer who is used to using a program like Photoshop might find fault with the functions available in PicMonkey, but as a novice who has never use Photoshop, I have found the quality I get from PicMonkey to be great, any boo-boo’s are always user error or a photo that’s not as good as it could be to begin with.
Always something new …
Over the 4 1/2 years I have been using PicMonkey, one thing I have noticed is they are continually working to upgrade the program and supply users with new and exciting content. They are always adding new overlays, including themed collections. In the beginning, we only have a relatively small selection of fronts to use, then they added the option to use your own. This year they have add 46 new fonts as well as the ability to curve text.
Another new feature recently added is templates. Whether you’re making social media images or and investigation, there are lots to choose from. Just add your own photo and change the text and you have a professional looking image. The quotes I’ve been posting recently on my Instagram account have been made using PicMonkey’s templates.