Before I go any further I have a confession. I am actually a paid up Adobe user now. To do the wedding pictures for my brother I bought a copy of Elements 9 (and Portrait Professional, but that is another story). Buying into the coven has not changed that much though, I still like some of the excellent tools coming from Linux or opensource developers. One really nifty editor I found recently is Photivo http://photivo.org/photivo/start Have a look at it, it offers some very interesting and powerful manipulation of image colour and detail. Not a complete package yet, but it works in tandem with Gimp, a powerful image editor. I am still playing with Photivo and need to be a bit more systematic, but it looks interesting enough to keep going.