PicMonkey: How does it compare to Picnik?

Like many of you, the O2O team was crushed to hear that come April 19th, Picnik will be no more. Picnik has been our go to photo editing site for a few years now and we were wondering what we would use come April 20th. Recently we heard the buzz about a new photo editing site, PicMonkey, created by former Picnik staffers, which sounds very promising!

To check out PicMonkey, I uploaded a recent photo and started playing around with it’s features. Here’s my photo in PicMonkey with no edits.

First impressions, I like how clean and simple the edit screen is. The first thing I always did in Picnik was select “auto adjust” to see what changes the software thought were needed in my photo, so that’s where I started with PicMonkey. Here’s the auto adjusted photo.

Looks like it took some of the glare off the leaves and slightly brightened the colors. Now the fun part of Picnik was all the different effects you could apply to your photos. “Ortonish” was always one of my favorites; on PicMonkey it’s simply called “Orton”.

Orton really darkened the background and kind of washed out the flowers. But just like in Picnik, you can adjust the level of the effect.

With a few adjustments, I brought out a little more color in the flowers and lightened up the background but still kept that bloomed out look of Orton.

And just for fun, the flowers in HDR and Yester-color.

The ability to put text on a photo was an often used feature on Picnik and PicMonkey has that, too.

Right now, there are not as many fonts as Picnik offered, though the ones that PicMonkey has are the same or similar to Picnik fonts and they are consistent with the clean and simple feel of the site.

Finally I took a look at the borders offered in PicMonkey.

Again, there are not many border options and the glaring omission, in my opinion, was the absence of the “before and after” border. I used that feature in Picnik a lot, mostly for my own edification, so that I could see just how much I had changed a photo.

One of the most popular Picnik features was the ability to create collages with your photos. PicMonkey does not currently offer this feature though they are quick to make it known, right on their front page, that they’ll be adding collages and more!

A couple of other things to note. PicMonkey is currently free, though if you want to use some of their premium features, you have to “sign-up”, which only requires submitting your email. But it seems like it’s on track to eventually have a paid, premium membership.

Also, another feature that I used a lot on Picnik was the ability to upload my edited photos to my Facebook, Flickr, Twitter, etc., accounts. Right now, you can only save your photos to your computer on PicMonkey. But hopefully that is one of the “more” features that will be coming soon!

While is slated to close on April 19th, it should be noted that several Picnik features are now available on Google+. It’s called “Creative Kit” and can be found in the photo view screens in your Google+ account. Some of the advanced features and, our favorite – the collages, are not currently included in the “Creative Kit”.

Next week we’ll take a look at another online Picnik alternative, iPiccy.

Have you tried PicMonkey? What are your thoughts?


  1. I’ve been using PicMonkey for a little over a week now. I like it. I think it is faster and cleaner than Picnik. I don’t mind saving to my computer as I am usually editing pictures for the blog. I like that it is easier than opening PSE and having to work through advanced features.

  2. Yeah, I’ll miss this service too!

  3. Yes i was disappointed to when i found out picnik was ending. Glad i found pic monkey. Today is my first time playing with it and i love it. Specially the instant thin feature. ha ha.

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