I have been doing quite a bit of graphical design within my web development as of late. In previous web development projects, tools such as MS Paint and Open Office were good enough to complete the task. However, at times you may run across a task which cannot be completed with those basic image editing utilities.
I was about to break down and purchase the one and only Adobe Photoshop so that I could perform high-end image editing. Of all that I've heard, Photoshop is the ultimate image editing and graphic design software. That may be true, but have you ever heard of The GIMP, an open-source image manipulation program? If not, you may want to give it a spin.
I am able to complete every task imaginable with The GIMP, including image editing, text formatting, and even animation. Some of the tasks take a bit of work to complete, but there are a slew of online tutorials to help you along the way.
If you are in the need of an image manipulator, GIF creator, or just a cool imaging utility, give The GIMP a try.