Ministry Technology: Open Source Image Editing When You Can't Afford Photoshop

What can you do when your ministry needs image editing software, but you either can not afford or do not understand how to use Photoshop? For those who could not afford Photoshop but understood high-end image editing programs the answer has traditionally been "The Gimp".

Gimp has been the flagship for high-end open source programming projects for quite some time. Sure its good and sure its free, but it sure is complex! For most churches and non-profits working with volunteers, complex is not a term we want to hear.

Now there is an alternative that your church, ministry, non-profit or business can use and its also free! It's called Pinta.

Pinta is a drawing/editing program modeled after Paint.NET. Its goal is to provide a simplified alternative to GIMP for casual users.

I tried it this weekend on some website banners and I personally found it easy to use. Although I am familiar enough with Macromedia's Fireworks program instead of Photoshop, this was much easier to get a handle on.

The menus and layout were surprisingly easy to use and understand. At no time did I feel intimidated or overwhelmed trying to understand what I should do next. This was a welcome change from working with the Gimp, which has left me bewildered more than once.

It did require that I install GTK for windows, but that was simple and easy as well. It should be noted that this program is not intended to replace Photoshop for serious graphic artists. It is nonetheless, a great substitute for those of us who only need to use a graphics program now and again.

If you are looking for a good, easy to use, no-cost solution for graphics editing try Pinta. I think you will like it. Pinta is available for download at

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Bishop James Brown aka "I Feel God" is the founding pastor of Victory Intl Church in Fort Worth, Texas., he is called "The Internet's Favorite Pastor". In addition, Bishop is a prolific writer and speaker who is in demand for his insights on cutting edge ministry and technology. He is also founder of, a global Internet community for ministers.

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