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Hi folks. After being out of painting for a while I am wanting to get back into it. Needless to say, I am out of practice and am in search of a good graphics editor that won't break the bank. I am somewhat familiar with Photoshop (I did use CS2 but no longer have it), but the cost for CC is just not in my budget. I have considered GIMP, but my past experiences have not been very positive in that it was not very intuitive. Maybe I should give it another go?

I have been doing some research on Photoshop alternatives and came across a newer software called Affinity Photo, which costs about $40 USD. It looks like a solid performer but it cannot save files in DDS format. However, if I recall, can't files be converted to DDS using DXTBMP? Has anyone used this software to create repaints and, if so, what has been your experience? Are there other options I am overlooking? Thanks.

Todd

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I've been using Paintshop Pro for well over a decade now and have seen it as low as $39 online.

I've found it to do everything just as well as PhotoShop (PS) and you can even use the PS DDS plug-in with it (So you don't have to use DXTBMP...to answer your question about the DDS Converter).

You can view paints I've created with it by clicking the link in my signature.

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I'm cheap, I use freeware.

DXTBmp for creating and opening DXT, DDS, BMP textures.

Paint.NET and GIMP for actual painting.

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GIMP has improved in the last few years but there are times when it's still a bit non-intuitive. Although my weapon of choice is Photoshop (Creative Cloud at $9 a month), there are still some things that only GIMP can do.

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How can you not afford Photoshop for only 10 bucks a month and you get Lightroom with it. I could never come up with the 600 or so bucks to buy it but now that it is subscription I can have it. Plus you always have the latest version using their cloud service. 

I admit that I still do 90 percent of my professional work with Paint Shop Pro 7 and DXTBmp and really find Photoshop very steep in learning curve. I do use it for some things I cannot do in PSP7 such as curved text or HDR toning. 

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In other words Paint Shop Pro7 and DXTBmp do perfectly for Sim-Painting. (never used anything else myself) 

10 dollar a month is no big deal for someone who has dollars enough to spend, thats however not a thing we can everyone expect to have.

All tools we need for sim-painting (software-wise-spoken) are available free ( or very cheap) on the internet.

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