Beyond Instagram: Photo Editing and Typography Apps

Examples of photo apps, with a focus on adding text and enhancing images with typography.

Last year, we shared some of our favorite photo apps and alternatives to Instagram. We’ve since discovered more photo apps, some free and some a few bucks each, as well as options focusing on specific effects (such as adding text and enhancing images with typography). Here are some options worth checking out.

General editing

Adobe Photoshop Express (iOS | Android | Windows — all free)

From the makers of Photoshop, this in-your-pocket version is an all-around solid app for general editing, filters, borders and frames (for the iOS version only), and easy touch-ups (cropping, straightening, rotating, removing red eye). You can also capture images right in the app, and share your mini-masterpieces across your social networks, too.

Photo Editor by Aviary (iOS | Android | Windows — all free)

Another free editing app, Aviary lets you add filters and frames, creative stickers, and more, and offers touch-up tools (red eye removal, blemish retouching, and even teeth whitening) to improve your pictures on the go.

Lomogram (Windows, free)

Want to share your life through lomo colors? A Windows alternative to Instagram, Lomogram has a mix of retro effects, borders (from polaroid to 35mm), scratches, light leaks/tweaks, auto-vignetting, and more. You can combine these effects to create a unique and oftentimes quirky image, all in the spirit of lomography and analog photography.

Text and typography

PicLab (PicLab HD) (iOS (free) | iOS HD, $1.99) | Android, free)

In the free versions of PicLab, you can add typography, filters, shapes, drop shadows, light tweaks, textures, borders, patterns, and more, as well as resize, rotate, and adjust the opacity of text.

These design additions are subtle but also effective, especially for bloggers interested in honing their personal brands and creating a unified design across their social networks. It’s a cool app to experiment with custom Image Widgets, too.

In the HD version, you can import your own custom graphics and logos to an image, as a fully editable layer.

Path On — Swipe to Type (iOS, $1.99)

You can create crazy, surreal images with Path On. Drawing lines with your finger, you manipulate decorative, bold fonts to add words, phrases, quotes, and lyrics. The app also offers simple shapes and effects (circle, square, spiral) to help you get started.

Ampergram (iOS, $.99 | Android, $.99)

Here, you create typographic compositions with photos from Instagram, using a system of tagging your images of letters using #ampergram and the letter or number in the image. Once you’ve tagged photos, you can use them to make words and typographic designs. (Read more about how it works.)

We’ll share more photo apps again soon. Do you use any photo apps not listed here? Share your favorites.

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