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Fotor Photo Editor for Mac is capable and free if you act quickly

Photo editing on a Mac presents a dilemma for budget-conscious consumers. Photoshop is high-end and expensive. iPhoto is affordable, but its editing tools are rudimentary. There are still plenty other apps to choose from, including Pixelmator and Acorn. Another good title to add to your list of photo editing apps is Fotor Photo Editor. It's not Photoshop, but it has a lot of strengths. Best of all, it is free for a limited time.

The app has excellent editing tools, giving you control of the exposure, brightness, contrast, white balance, sharpening, blurring and much more. The app also features 13 different one click enhancement options, as well as a large selection of effects and frames. The app even lets you apply tilt-shift filters to your images, and supports most image formats including the all important raw import. It also lets you import multiple images for HDR treatment. Text can easily be added to photos, and you can pop up a panel with your EXIF data.

I found Fotor to be simple and intuitive to use. All the operations are on a panel to the right of the main screen. You can see your original image with a click, then reapply the filters. One thing I didn't like is there is no history-based undo. There is a button bewilderingly called 'none,' which takes all the filters and optimizations off. I'd like the app to go backwards step by step through all the changes and undo them one at a time. With this version of Fotor, undoing a mistake is all or nothing.

I think many photographers will like Fotor Photo Editor. The same developers have done some excellent iOS apps and it's nice to see those skills brought to the Mac.

I don't know how long Fotor will be free, so grab it as soon as you can. The app requires OS X 10.6 or later and a 64-bit processor. It has been optimized to work with Retina Display screens.