As the best smartphone cameras are increasingly able to perform phenomenal feats of photography, we are all looking for ways to present our photos in style. Photo collages are a great way to show off and share a selection of images, so it's no surprise to find that collage makers are hugely popular creative tools right now.
It's perfectly possible to use general design software, such as Adobe's Creative Cloud suite as a collage maker tool. However, unless you already know what you're doing, you're going to need to set aside some time and probably hunt out some Photoshop tutorials in order to be successful.
Great news though: many popular mobile and web applications are now including built-in collage maker tools to simplify the process, and there are several dedicated collage makers out there in app and browser format. The quality of these varies wildly, so we've tried some out to see if they're up to scratch. Scroll down for our pick of the best free online collage makers, or jump to page 2 for the best collage maker apps.
Free online collage makers
- Developer: Ribbet
- Price: Free (Basic); $4.95/mo (Premium)
Free online collage maker Ribbet has just got a lovely new interface, which is a delight to use. Pick a template, upload images, adjust sizing, round corners, edit lighting, exposure and so on. If you change your mind, you can easily change your template by adding extra rows or columns. This our pick for the best online collage maker around. There's also a free iOS app and one in the pipeline for Android users (see page 2 for all the best collage maker apps).
02. Adobe Spark
- Developer: Adobe
- Price: Free
Spark is a free photo collage maker from Adobe. Its simple interface means it doesn't require the same learning curve demanded by most Adobe applications: simply name your project and use the various design options available to arrange your photos into an eye-catching collage. You need a Creative Cloud account for full CC benefits (sign up here), but it is perfectly useable without.
- Developer: Canva
- Price: Free (paid plans available)
Canva is an all-round design package you can use in the browser or as an app (originally just for iOS devices, but now available on Android mobile too). The basic package is completely free, but there are paid plans available if you want something more advanced.
Amongst Canva's tools is a big selection of collage templates, which look great and are easy to use. You can also spice up your collages with Canva's enormous selection of effects, filters, fonts, shapes and more.
- Developer: BeFunky
- Price: Free (Basic); $4.95/mo (Plus)
BeFunky is one of the best free online collage makers around. It offers tons of templates, a simple interface and seamless integration with the BeFunky Photo Editor. The free version works well, but if you're after more photo effects, higher-resolution downloads and the ability to use your collages commercially, you'll need the BeFunky Plus account. As well as an online tool, BeFunky is available as an app for iOS or Android.
- Developer: piZap
- Price: Free (Basic); $5.99/mo (Pro)
Ad-funded online collage maker piZap has the option of a Flash interface or a new HTML interface. The latter is currently in beta, but we're impressed with what we've seen of it so far. It's simple to use, there are plenty of templates, stock images and fonts to choose from, and you can add text and stickers to liven things up. A nice feature is the inclusion of Facebook banner templates, to help you upgrade your social media branding with ease.
The Pro version offers ad-free designing, a much bigger selection of fonts, stock images and templates, the ability to download your collage in super high resolution, and more. There are app versions for iOS and Android, so you can piZap on the move too.
- Developer: Zygomatic
- Price: Free
PhotoCollage has a nice, does-what-it-says-on-the-tin name, and the web-based collage maker is no less simple to use. It works on Mac, Windows, Android and iOS platforms including touchscreens, and you can choose from collage templates or use your skills to create freeform collages.
You work with low-resolution images, then once you're happy with the arrangement you can choose to 'order' a high-resolution version of your design. One frustrating feature is that the editing tools aren't sticky, so you'll probably need to scroll up and down to find the ones you want.
- Developer: Fotor
- Price: Free (Basic); from $3.33/mo (Pro)
Fotor is a professional-level online collage maker. Unlike some of the collage making tools on this list, with Fotor you can import a load of images, which are displayed on the right-hand bar, then choose when and where to place them in your collage (rather than selecting where they'll go when you import them). This is a simple feature that makes it much easier to put together attractive collages.
You can only get part of the way with the free version – you can design collages, but they'll feature the Fotor watermark, which isn't ideal. For advanced features, an ad-free interface, watermark-free collages and cloud-based storage, you'll need to shell out for the Pro version.
- Developer: Photovisi
- Price: Free (Basic); $4.99/mo (Premium)
Photovisi is a stand-alone collage maker with no fripperies and no photo editing tools to distract and confuse. You simply select a collage design, add your photos and drag them around till you're satisfied, then download it. What could be easier? If you want to download a watermark-free collage, you'll need to pay up on the Premium plan.
09. Google Photos
- Developer: Google
- Price: Free
Google Photos, once known as Picasa, is an image organiser and photo editor – but did you know it comes with a built-in collage maker? You can experiment with six different collage types in the hands-on collage creation screen, and they will be saved in your 'Collages' folder. It's pretty basic, but as you'd expect from Google, the interface is nice and clear and what it does do, it does well.
- Developer: Kizoa
- Price: Free (Basic) plus lifetime Premium memberships
The web-based Kizoa Collage Maker is one of the most difficult collage maker tools to navigate, but it does offer dozens of ready-made templates (both static and animated) for all kinds of occasions. You can customise the templates or create your own from scratch, then add photos, GIFs, videos and even stickers to your designs, and finish the whole thing off with some text.
Kinoa membership also includes access to a movie maker and photo editor, so you can accomplish any number of creative tasks from inside the browser.
- Developer: Pearlmountain
- Price: Free (Basic); $6.99/mo (Plus)
FotoJet is a free online collage maker that enables you to create collages, photo cards, posters, Facebook covers, Twitter headers, YouTube banners, fun photos and more. There are hundreds of templates for you to work with, including some of the most creative designs we've seen so far – such as this one, where you can add images into coconuts. The paid Plus option offers a much wider range of resources to work with.
- Developer: PicMonkey
- Price: From $5.99/mo (free trial available)
Part of the PicMonkey suite – a web app that also offers image editing, touch-up and design tools – PicMonkey collage is a fast and powerful way to organise your images into attractive shapes. Import images from your computer or connect to online services such as Facebook, OneDrive, Dropbox and Flickr. You can fine-tune your collage by adjusting the zoom and placement of your images, and add filters. 'Supremium' users also have access to advanced touch-up tools.
Once a free online collage maker, you now need to subscribe to PicMonkey to download your design. There are three different plans available, depending on your needs. However, you can design your collage for free, and there is a week-long free trial available, which is worth exploring before you shell out.
Next page: The best collage maker apps