Traditionally, watermarks were placed on paper produced by creating a variation in the paper’s thickness but were only visible when you held the paper up against light. Today, though, you can add digital watermarks to media files such as images or videos using Photoshop, so it’s easier to identify and copyright-protect the information contained in the file.
If you’re not familiar with it, don’t know how to use it or find it too complicated for your needs, follow along to find out how you can add a watermark to an image without Photoshop.
Types of Watermarking Software
There are different software or tools you can use apart from Photoshop that can help you watermark your images. The process is also much easier with such tools, provided you pick the right software. You can easily complete watermarking to a single photo or a batch of photos within minutes.
Watermarking software can be categorized under browser-based (online), desktop and mobile apps. If you’re using your computer, there are tools such as Microsoft Paint 3D among other free and paid options that help you watermark your photos invisibly.
Mobile watermarking apps for Android and iOS platforms also exist in case you want to watermark your images on the go from your smartphone or tablet.
What follows are different options you can use to watermark your images without Photoshop.
Use Microsoft Paint 3D to Watermark Images
This is a free and cheap way of adding watermarks to images without using Photoshop. You can do it by overlaying some text over the image to create the watermark, though it may not look as professional or pretty as with other photo editors.
Use Online Watermarking Software
There are several free and paid online tools you can use to watermark your images without using Photoshop. Some of these include the following.
PicMarkr allows up to five image uploads and three options for watermarking: text, tiled and image.
A text watermark simply adds a string of text to your image, but an image watermark places logos or other images over the original image. A tiled watermark on the other hand layers an image or text over the image you want to watermark.
The main drawback with PicMarkr is that you can’t choose the opacity of the secondary image that overlays the original, so it won’t blend well with your own original image.
Watermark.ws is flexible and has lots of options. It offers a fast and easy way of watermarking your images without Photoshop. You can drag an image or text anywhere on your image, and adjust color, font and image opacity. The advantage with using this tool is that it gives you professional-looking results, and you can edit your image multiple times.
This browser-based watermarking software lets you watermark your images locally so none of your files are transferred to their servers for watermarking. This ensures you get an extra layer of privacy unlike other online software that watermark your images on the platform.
Use a Desktop App to Watermark Images
You can use a desktop watermarking app to add a watermark to your images by using downloadable software. Such tools don’t require an Internet connection to use them like online software does, which makes them faster. You’re able to store your images to your computer’s local drive as well.
There are several watermarking apps for Windows and Mac computers. These include TSR Watermark, PhotoBulk (paid tool for macOS), and uMark (free and paid), among others. Another good one is IrfanView for Windows, which is an image viewer but has a native watermarking tool.
If you prefer a DIY method, you can easily add a watermark to PDF pages using Quick Action in macOS.
Use a Photo Editor to Watermark Images
If your photo editor tool doesn’t have a built-in watermarking feature, you can use image editors such as GIMP (free and open source) or Pixelmator for the same purpose. The results of the watermarking process using image editors will depend on your level of designing, but for many people, it’s an easier (and cheaper) way of creating watermarks instead of Photoshop.
Mobile Apps for Watermarking Images
If you’re using your smartphone, tablet or iPad to watermark your images on the go, there are several mobile watermarking apps for Android and iOS you can use.
Among them is iWatermark (Android/iOS), which allows you to pick images from your phone’s gallery and add watermarks like a copyright or custom logo with a few taps. It also offers a batch-watermarking feature so you can watermark multiple images at once.
You can also try Shortcuts (formerly Workflow) for iOS, which helps you automate several functions besides watermarking. You can create a shortcut that will watermark your whole image collection and even resize and upload it to social networks.
If you want to add a watermark on an image without Photoshop and still keep it unobtrusive and clean, try any of the above options before investing in or trying Photoshop. A watermark only adds a layer of security and identifies or brands your images as yours and doesn’t guarantee your images won’t be used without your consent. Ultimately, you’ll have to decide if adding a watermark is worth the expense, effort, and time.