What is the best software for making and editing scientific images for publication quality figures? – ResearchGate

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Personally I use Matlab to make my figures (unless they are microscopy images, in which case I go with photoshop or ImageJ). This way I don’t have to remember what little tweaks I did to each figure to get it perfect, everything is written into a code. The same principle applies to R. The reason these programs are great is that you can go from raw data, to analysis, to a publication-quality figure in the same software, and in many cases all at once. Matlab allows you to completely customize figures, and exports them to all of the usual file formats (EPS, PDF, TIFF). Furthermore, because the structure of your figures is written in a code (and is therefore just a text file) you can manage the files using version control software and Git Hub so that you never lose any figure formats. In the cases where I make modifications to figures, or if I want to make a schematic diagram or a cartoon, I use Illustrator. My impression is that Inkscape is just as good as Illustrator except free, if you can’t get Illustrator. The downside obviously is that both programs have a learning bump to them, and don’t make sense if all you want is to get WYSIWYG style point and click figures. In that case, one option is Grapher which is pretty intuitive and produces very nice figures. Hey Luciano, so how are you preparing your figures now?Little tip, GraphPad and powerpoint are also useful to prepare your graphs and assemble them… There is sort of an underestimation of powerpoint for making figures but the latest version is very good and enough to sort figures out… (Although you may need to go back to illustrator to change the size of your figures.. but I find PP easiest to assemble…) To make engineering diagrams (with proper image scaling), I use Asymptote. The learning curve is steep but image quality is very good. It also works with 3D and animations. To make plots, I import data in tecplot, which in my opinion is the best plotting software. It also allows to save layout files which means you can store the formatting instructions. Then for any future corrections, you just need to open the layout file and the software will load your data file with previous formatting. Can someone point to a link to a good tutorial video on making a multi-panel high resolution scientific figure using a software, e.g., inkscape or illustrator? Photoshop is the best photo editing software and GIMP is the free alternative image editing software Source.

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