Aviary Photo Editor is a straight forward and concise graphics editor for Windows 8. It doesn’t have the level of effects and customization as Photoshop or GIMP, but is intuitive enough for novice users. Aviary Photo Editor is powerful for a free app and will be a practical, no frills addition to your library.
Aviary Photo Editor contains several staple features found in most image software. You can change a picture’s orientation, crop, or adjust contrast and brightness. Aviary Photo Editor has filters and effects to uniformly change hue or create lighting. These filters can be applied multiple times, further magnifying the intensity. Overuse of Aviary Photo Editor’s filters will quickly make pictures appear surreal or haunting.
There is a sticker option to add rasterized images such as hats, ties, and arrows. However, all of these stickers are so blatantly cartoonish that they contrast any photo, regardless of filtering. Aviary Photo Editor contains text and drawing tools, but the lack of feathering and limited color palate will generally result in unbelievable images.
Finally, Aviary Photo Editor has tools to remove red-eye, whiten teeth, and add blemishes. These tools have rather large diameters, making it difficult to precisely edit on smaller images. Aviary Photo Editor is better for fast and simple jobs rather than detailed projects.
Aviary Photo Editor’s layout is unusual for a photo editor. The image you’re editing in placed in the middle of the screen with the utility bar underneath. The most obvious omission is a lack of zoom or scrolling an image. This makes it very difficult to properly edit small images, or apply detailed editing to larger ones. Aviary Photo Editor's drawing tools only have six sizes, with the smallest size generally being too big for most jobs.
Aviary Photo Editor’s strong point comes from it other tools such as crop and sliders. The crop tool is separated into a three by three grid, making it easy to see just what will be included and cut. If you don’t wish to draw out an area you can also quickly select a preset dimension.
Brightness, contrast, saturation, and sharpness are all controlled by large sliders. Using these will offer a preview of the applicable adjustment. It’s very easy to back out and cancel any changes you’re not happy with. You don’t need to save or name any images as each job is saved automatically.
Aviary Photo Editor’s appearance matches other Windows 8 Modern UI apps. Large rectangular icons are presented against a dark gray background. As more edits are saved they will appear in a grid on the right. You can scroll through this to easily compare images or find what you’re looking for. The quality of finished images depends on the original image. Even without any save settings images are compressed into small size PNG files.
Aviary Photo Editor is a good editing tool for novice users that want to edit quickly. It lacks the detailed precision of other photo software, making it unsuitable for complex projects. If you want to simply crop, adjust levels, or change orientation and want good compression Aviary Photo Editor will prove to be a handy app.