Top photo editing apps for firefighters

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These days we practically carry an expensive digital camera in our pockets, ready to whip out at the next exciting job we arrive at. But, not all fireground photography is created equal. Take a look at the top photo editing apps for firefighters to help improve your snaps!

We’re not going to go into specifics on how to compose your photos or tell you what to shoot, so let’s assume you’ve snapped a whole bunch of photos but you need to turn them from happy snap to social media sensations.

Google Photos

What we like about it

If you’re after something that’s really quick and easy, google photos has just about everything you need. You can apply predefined filters without hassle, along with easy to use features like cropping and image enhancements.

We particularly like the fact you can apply a filter, then tweak the settings to your liking. As a bonus, you can also backup all your photos to a google account and then have the immense power of Google behind you. This means having the ability to do things like opening the app and searching for something like “fire” or “fire truck” and have it return your matching photos without you ever having categorised them. Super handy.

What makes it good for firefighters?

The manual image editing can make fire or appliances look pretty dramatic. Using the ‘pop’ feature can turn a boring fire photo into a much more interesting scene.

Another great idea is creating a shared album which can be passed around the station, so if anyone snaps a good shot, they can add it to the shared station album for everyone to access.

Most of the editing features available to you through the google photos app are also available through the online photos.google.com. So if you’ve had a big day of photos, you can sit down at a computer and edit them online as you go. Nice time saver!

Download on Google Play
Download on the App Store

Snapseed

What we like about

If google photos is your ground-level application, Snapseed is the next level up. If you’re after a bit more functionality and looking to add extra flair to your photos, this is the app you want to get.

It’s very easy to use, has a bunch of great features and is fairly straightforward. There’s a huge selection of image editing tools available to you in the app and it should cover just about everything you need.

It’s particularly great at improving landscape photos by applying customisable HDR effects.

The image editing options available to you in snapseed

What makes it good for firefighters?

If you run a social media page, Snapseed is great for quickly getting photos edited, branded and uploaded to your station social page. Check out the images below – that took all of about 30 seconds to edit, save and upload.

The filters are great and you can quickly add drama and excitement to photos that otherwise look a bit dull. Throw in the ability to add text and frames and you’ve got yourself a one-stop-shop. The only thing it lacks is the ability to create a collage.

It has some great additional tools, like perspective alteration and selective adjustment, which means you can select a specific section of your photo and apply corrections to it. Handy for selecting something that’s on fire tweaking it to make it stand out.

Download on Google Play
Download on the App Store

Pixlr

What we like about it

Pixlr is an old fan favourite. It has a web version if you’re editing on a PC, but their app comes in both a free and paid version. It has loads of options available to you, with the addition of a collage maker – something that snapseed doesn’t offer.

Google photos have a very limited collage option, but it lacks customisation so it’s not really worth mentioning. If putting up a stack of photos together into a collage is something that you might find beneficial, Pixlr is not a bad option to try. There are other standalone apps that will do collages for you, but they don’t offer anywhere near as many overall image editing options as Pixlr does.

The tools at your disposal

What makes it good for firefighters?

If you’re looking for one app to do everything we’ve mentioned above, Pixlr is a pretty safe bet. It’s got loads of editing tools, collage creating abilities, frames, filters and pretty decent text addition options.

There are added features that you can purchase, but the free version should cover most of what you need. You will, however, see ads in the app which might be a deal-breaker for some people.

The app is free, but if you want to drop $3.19/Month or $18/Year for the premium version you will unlock 334 stickers, 182 overlays, 150 borders and fonts and remove ads.

For us, it’s a tough sell to go past snapseed but, if stickers, frames, fonts and collages are your jam – it’s worth every penny.

Download on Google Play
Download on the App Store

TouchRetouch

What we like about

This app is just amazing. If you have an object you want to remove from a photo, it’s as simple as highlighting it with your finger then clicking ‘Go’. That’s it. It works for things like power lines, embers, ash and soot – you name it.

Look at these examples below from an old photo of mine. In the first frame, you can see a bunch of embers flying around. I selected them with my finger in the second photo and just hit ‘Go’.

As you can see in the last frame, you wouldn’t even know they were there.

What makes it good for firefighters?

Not every fireground is going to have the greatest conditions for taking photos. Sometimes you’re covered in ash, mud or soaked to the bone. Don’t let that stop you from taking a couple of great photos tho!

Look at this shot below, I was able to edit out the road lines just by selecting them. If you saw that second photo, you wouldn’t even know they were there in the first place.

The app is around $2, which is less than half the price of the spiced pumpkin mocha you bought this morning. If you’re serious about photos for your station, this is a must-have.

Download on Google Play
Download on the App Store

So, what’s the TL;DR?

Google Photos

  • Solid basic photo editing abilities. The “pop” feature is great for adding oomph to your shots.
  • Cloud-based backup with amazing search and album features.
  • Online editing of your photos using the same tools as the app.
  • Shared albums for the station are a great idea to capture moments.

Snapseed

  • Great all-round app.
  • Supports filters, manual editing, text, frames and effects.
  • If you’re comfortable with a bit of manual editing, this is our pick of the litter.

Pixlr

  • Ad-supported app with premium options available within.
  • Loads of tools and effects available, downloadable fonts and extras.
  • Teasers for the premium version can be annoying.
  • If snapseed isn’t the right fit for you, give Pixlr a try.

TouchRetouch

  • Powered by pure magic and wizardry.
  • Ability to remove objects, lines or random things from photos.
  • It’s $2, but it’s worth it.

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