Best Apps For Mac Catalina

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Editing your photos on your iPhone is one thing, but editing your photos on your Mac can take your photography skills to a whole 'nother level.

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Many of us still keep our main libraries on our Macs because of its faster processors, larger storage, and all-around bigger computing power. The Mac is still the best device for serious photo editing, so you need some serious photo editing apps to make an impact.

The built-in Photos app on Mac offers several useful photo editing tools. You can crop, adjust lighting and color, set the white balance, add filters, remove unwanted blemishes, and a few more things. However, in all honesty? It's not really meant to be a robust editing app, so If you are looking for something to really finish your photos right, we've got a list of the best photo editors for Mac right here. Let's go!

Affinity Photo

If you're looking for a photo editing app that goes above and beyond for the pricetag, while still allowing you complete creative control over your images, then it might be worth it to take a peek at Affinity Photo.

Affinity Photo supports unlimited layers, groups, layer adjustments, filters, masking, and more: you also have access to tools like dodge, red-eye fix, burn, blemish, clone, and patch (so pretty much Photoshop without all the convoluted bells and whistles). Nondestructive auto-saving makes undoing everything you've done easy, so if you need to start from the beginning, the option is there.

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Play, manipulate, edit, and get hella creative with Affinity Photo whether you're a serious graphic designer or someone who's just looking to do some basic editing. Your photography will seriously thank you.

  • $49.99 - Download now

Fotor Photo Editor

Searching for a super simple, straight-forward photo editing app that's there to help you edit and not confuse you to the point of ripping out your hair? Then check out Fotor Photo Editor!

With this photo editor, you can easily adjust contrast and color of more washed-out photos, add borders, tilt and shift your images, add different text, slap on a few filters, and so much more, all from the easy-to-find toolbox on the right side of the app. You can even create collages of your photography masterpieces!

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The BBC once called Fotor Photo Editor 'light Photoshop', and they're kind of right! You can go above and beyond editing your images with Fotor Photo Editor without getting bogged down by more complicated editing buttons and tools.

  • Free - Download now


When you look into photo editing software, one of the first things that'll pop up is Adobe's Lightroom, and for good reason! It's essentially a staple in the photo editing community.

Lightroom is great for photographers who need to manage a large image library, and who are prepared to commit to (and pay for) Adobe's cloud storage space. But it is purely a photography tool that's a little outside the regular Adobe design ecosystem. (Creative Bloq)

Pretty much anything you want to do with your photo, you can accomplish with Lightroom. You can blend and merge shadows and highlights, sharpen dull, blurry images so they look crisp and clear, add details and tint colors to make a photo stand out, and so, so much more. Remote desktop connection client for mac yosemite.

While it is a bit more on the complicated side, people who use the program and know how to navigate it are hooked. Keep in mind, there are two versions of the app — there's the Classic version, which is more preferred, and the 2018 CC version.

If you're hesitant about the program and paying for it, you can download Lightroom free for 30 days as part of a trial period. After that, you can add it to your Photoshop CC subscription for $9.99 per month.

  • Free trial - Download now


Amp up your photo editing skills with a little bit of help from Pixelmator!

This particular photo editing app allows you to combine two different photos into one (while still allowing you to edit over each layer), add shapes, gradients, filters, tints, and more, and completely change and edit your photography to make it fit perfectly to your aesthetic. You can even mask and cut off certain areas of the photo, giving you more creative control over your final image.

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Similar to other photo editing apps, you can also adjust contrast, color, saturation level, definition, and so much more.

It's another great alternative to Photoshop, at least according to our managing editor Lory Gil.

  • $29.99 - Download now


Love Photoshop (or the idea of Photoshop..) but don't want all the complicated components and nonsense that comes along with it? Then it might be worth it to take a peek at GIMP.

Similar to Photoshop, GIMP allows you full control over editing your photos: it's an advanced image manipulation program with detailed customization for color reproduction.

You can add layers to your photos, edit and tweak colors, adjust contrast, crop, adjust saturation, and so much more. If you're someone who admires Photoshop but is terrified of the price (or just thinks it's not worth it) then GIMP might be the perfect pal for you.

  • Free - Download now


Say 'bye-bye' to nasty photobombs, zits, perky distractions, and so much more in your photos thanks to Snapheal!

Snapheal is a little bit unique in the sense that it's more of a 'delete now, ask questions later' app. It's more about cleaning up a photo than it is editing it and adding a whole bunch of layers. The tools can either remove large objects or smaller imperfections depending on the mode. You can even adjust the masking tool, use a magic rope, or clone stamp your way to a new photo.

If you're someone who's a perfectionist when it comes to your photography and you just can't stand that one stupid, distracting blur in the background, then Snapheal is the guy for you.

  • $7.99 - Download now


I know what you're thinking: 'Preview? Really, Cella?'

To which I respond: 'Uh, yeah. Duh, my dude. You use it every day!'

Sure, you can't do a bunch of fancy things with Preview like add filters, adjust contrast, and fix saturation, but you can quickly crop a photo, adjust the color, rotate it, add shapes, texts, and a signature, export as a different format, and more.

Yes, Preview isn't perfect, but it is easy to use and fantastic for making small, fast changes to your photography.

  • It's already on your Mac.

How do you edit your photography?

What is your favorite photo editing app for the Mac? Why does it work the best for you? Let us know what your top picks are in the comments down below!

Updated August 2018: All the choices on this list are still the best of the best!

iPhone photography


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Unable to access the iPhoto app after installing Catalina? It is because iPhoto has already retired, meaning Apple no longer supports it. In exchange, Apple introduced the Photos app, which does pretty much the same tasks as iPhoto.

Now, we understand if it’s hard for you to let go of the iPhoto app, especially if you have been using it for years. Well, in that case, we have solutions. Below, we’ve enumerated problems and possible solutions related to the use of the iPhoto app. Hopefully, by the end of the post, you’ll have a better understanding of how to overcome your problem and gain access to your media files.

Problem #1: How do you access your media files if iPhoto is no longer here after updating your macOS to Catalina?

Do you have thousands of photos saved in iPhoto? Are all your media files lost? Is there anything you can do? Do you think it is possible to retrieve all your media files when iPhoto no longer works in Catalina?

Many iPhoto app users have these questions, too. So, to make things clear, we can answer by saying that macOS Catalina is keeping you from accessing the app. Macs that run Catalina or later will no longer launch iPhoto because Apple has retired the app.

So, what can you do with this problem? Try any of the solutions below:

1: Simply use the Photos app, which comes pre-installed with macOS Catalina.


Again, iPhoto will no longer work with Catalina. And there seems to be no chance of it working in the future. Thus, your best solution is probably to get all your media files transferred or migrated to the Photos app on your device.

Don’t worry because this new app allows you to quickly import your photos from the iPhoto app. Here’s what you should do:

  1. Press and hold the Option key.
  2. Open the Photos app from the Dock.
  3. A prompt will pop up asking you to choose a specific library that you want to access. From the list, select the iPhoto library.
  4. Click Choose Library.
  5. Wait for your photos to be loaded and launched in your new Photos app.

From now on, you can manage all your photos using this app.

2. Recover all your missing photos via the iPhoto app, especially if you have failed to migrate.

In the event that the migration process did not go as planned and you ended up losing all your photos, your best option is to install and use recovery software to recover your lost media files.

There are plenty of file recovery apps you can find online. But we suggest that you use a trusted file recovery tool like Auslogics File Recovery. With this app, you can easily retrieve all the files that you thought were already lost for good. It also works with external storage devices like memory cards and USB drives. It can also be used to recover various file types. With this tool in your arsenal, you won’t have any reason to panic.

Problem #2: I want to upgrade the iPhoto app so it will be compatible with Catalina. Is it possible?

Unfortunately, this is not possible because the iPhoto app is no longer supported on Catalina. iPhoto has long been retired, so no matter what you do, the app will never run on your device. The app uses an outdated framework that Apple no longer supports. Your best option here is to use other apps like Photos.

Aside from the built-in Photos app, which comes with Catalina, here are other app alternatives you can try:

  1. Picasa – It is photo-editing software developed by Google. It is used for organizing and editing photos and albums.
  2. Apple Aperture – It is hailed as one of the best apps to replace iPhoto on Apple devices.
  3. Adobe Photoshop Lightroom – There is a specific version of Adobe Photoshop Lightroom intended for Macs. And it’s more interesting to use compared to other Adobe Photoshop versions.
  4. Lyn – This app is the perfect companion for Mac users who are also fond of taking photos. It is a must-have for those who have galleries filled with photos from various storage devices.
  5. Pixa – This app received instant fame because of its way of organizing photos on Macs.
  6. Google Photos – It is one of the best alternatives to iPhoto as it allows you to manage, upload, and store photos on the cloud. It actually provides you with 15GB of free storage space, which you can use not only for photos but for other files as well.

But before you use any of these recommended apps, we suggest that you optimize your Mac first. This way, you can ensure nothing comes your way when editing or organizing your photos.

The best way to optimize your Mac is to use a trusted Mac repair tool like TweakBit MacRepair.

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In just a few clicks, you can get rid of unnecessary files that may trigger problems and resolve any issues that may arise in the future.

Problem #3: How do you create an iPhoto backup before upgrading to Catalina?

Worried that you might no longer be able to retrieve your media files? You may back up your photos to an external drive before proceeding with the macOS update. It’s probably the best way to safekeep your photos.

The good thing is that Mac allows you to easily back up your iPhoto media files. You don’t even need another app to do that. As long as your Mac is in a good running state, then you can proceed with creating a backup in a jiffy.

Here’s what you should do:

  1. Open Finder.
  2. Navigate to Users and select Pictures.
  3. Right-click on the iPhoto Library section.
  4. Choose the Show Package Contents option.
  5. Open the Masters folder. You should see all your photos sorted by date or year.
  6. Copy all the folders and save them onto your external drive.

Congratulations, you have successfully backed up your iPhoto files on your external drive.

The Bottom Line

If you are still hoping to use the iPhoto app after upgrading to Catalina, then you are only wasting your time. There is no way you can use the app after the Catalina update. However, the solutions above should help you get by.

What do you think about the new Photos app? Do you think it makes a great replacement for iPhoto? Let us know in the comments!


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