Free Glitch Art Software

Glitch Art is the practice of deliberately introducing what appear to be analog errors into modern digital images in the name of art.  In this movement, visual artifacts, bugs, and static which are usually a sign of file corruption are considered treasured adornments.  Chalk it up to a generation's nostalgia for the bygone days of VHS or an obsession with dystopian aesthetics, but Glitching has gone mainstream and it looks like it's here to stay.

For those of you interested in trying your hand at this new cyberpunk art form, here's a directory of free (and nearly free) software for generating your own Glitch Art!  As usual, if you think we overlooked a piece of software, drop us a link in the comments below!


Desktop Glitch Software


Audacity - Open source, free sound editor
GUI based for Windows, Linux, OS X

Avidemux - Cross-platform video editing utility for basic editing and encoding - use version 2.5.6, as newer versions do not glitch properly
GUI based for Windows, OS X, Linux

AviGlitch - Ruby library for datamoshing AVI video

Bit Vision - a number of pixel shifting effects for images
GUI based for Web

Bitmap sorter - throw an image into this and see the pixels drift
Web-based GUI

c64yourself - images come out looking like they were created on a Commodore
Web-based GUI

Chromata - reduce your images to surreal line art
Web-based GUI

Cycling '74 Max - professional software used to visually manipulate streams of data
GUI based for Windows, OS X
$9.99/mo, $99/yr, or $399

Delaunay Triangulations - labs.vieron.net - applies triangle effects to an image
GUI based for OS X
$8.99, Trial available

ffmpeg - Multimedia video encoding framework that can be adapted to glitch effects
Command Line Interface for Windows, OS X, Linux

Fractal Lab - Generate 3d fractals in your browser then grab screenshots
Web-based GUI

GIFKR - A  trippy GIF filter animator
GUI based for Windows, Linux, OS X

Glitcher - Layer Gif effects to create a glitch loop
Web-based GUI

GlitchGIF - Turn audio into datamoshing effects and apply them to GIFs
Software Plugin (Price: $15)

GlitchSort2 - Paul Hertz's much-admired Processing-based glitch tool
GUI based for Windows, Linux, OS X

Glitchy3bitDither -Offers a variety of filters
GUI based for Web

GoldMosh - A software suite for datamoshing. Extremely easy to use.
GUI based for OS X

GoldWave - Professional digital audio editor
GUI based for Windows (Price: $45)

Hex Fiend - There are plenty of hex editors for Macs. This one is particularly useful.
GUI based for OS X

HexEditor - A Hex editor for Windows popular on the Glitch scene.
GUI based for Windows

IBNIZ - Obscure audiovisual programming developed for the demoscene
GUI based for Windows

ipooponyourart - Cool image manipulator
Web-based GUI

Jpeg2wav - Encode a JPEG images as sound files.
Web-based GUI

JPEGKrusher - A small utility specifically created for introducing JPEG corruptions
Web-based GUI

Jpglitch - Create simple Glitch JPGs through the command line
Command Line Interface for Windows, Linux, OS X

KLEAR - Chroma key your Gifs with ease.
GUI based for Web

Mandelbulb 3D - Generate 3D fractal images for Windows
GUI based for Windows

MOSH -A popular image Glitching site with a wide array of effects
Web-based GUI

openFrameworks - A fantastic open source C++ framework for creative coding

Pixelock - Scramble images with an encryption algorithm.
Web-based GUI

Primitive.js - Reduce an image to primitive shapes
Web-based GUI

Processing - Popular programming language for generating images

Pure Data / Pd - An open source visual programming language

PYUV - An extremely useful utility that can play back videos broken beyond repair
GUI based for Windows, Linux, OS X

Rutt-Etra-Izer - A simulator that recreates Rutt-Etra synthesizer visuals
GUI based for Web

Scary Text Generator - Generate Zalgo text.

Sculptris - Entry-level 3d modeling software
GUI based for Windows, OS X

SELFIE APOCALYPSE - Glitch your selfies to place yourself in a cyberpunk dystopia
GUI based for Web

Snorpey's javascript experiments -Manipulate images in your browser
GUI based for Web

SoX - Sound processing utility with a steep learning curve
Command Line Interface for Windows, OS X, Linux

VirtualDub - Video processing utility for Windows
GUI based for Windows

VVV - A live-programming environment for real time motion graphics
GUI based for Windows, Code (Free for Non-commercial use)

William Woodruff's glitch scripts - image-glitch, images-glitch, image-bork
Command Line Interface for Windows, Linux, OS X

Zalgo text generator -  Combine characters to generate Zalgo text.
GUI based for Web


Glitch Art Android Photo Apps

8Bit Photo Lab - Degrade the resolution and colors in your photos until they resemble snaps taken in the eighties.  If you grew up with VGA monitors and GameBoys, this app will be a trip down memory lane. There are even classic game sprites you can add.

Glitch! - A straightforward app that lets you “draw” glitches with your finger. It's a lot of fun, but user beware!  This app has no undo button.  Screw up and you'll have to start from scratch.

Glitchr - Another simple app that randomly applies one effect at a time.

Vintage Retro Camera - Ages photos with filters that includes 8mm and VHS along with an array of other psychedelic effects.  You can also use it to distort any image or video from your library.


Glitch Art iOS Photo Apps


Anti Tagging – Anonymizes photos by auto-detecting faces and glitching them out. Yes, it's a one-trick pony, but it's extremely useful under the right circumstances.

Bent Camera – Strictly a live camera app.  Allows you to fragment and glitch with a variety of effects, including RGB and pixel shifting.

Databender – Better known for its video effects, it’s full of other features for still photos.

Decim8 – This is far and away the most popular app for photo destruction.  It offers 27 different glitch filters, all of which can be applied simultaneous.  The app's biggest drawback is that there’s no fine tuning for the individual effects.  The effects also layer successively, not simultaneously, which requires considerable forethought.

Glitch - Choose your glitch effect and apply. Has a few nice features, including variable controls for effects and the ability to rotate an image, which is handy since most glitch effects tend to destroy data in a top-to-bottom manner.

Glitch Cam– Glitch Cam is a free version of Camera Filters from Glitché

Glitch Lab Pro – A powerful glitch editor with tons of options.

Glitch.Simply – A simplistic one-click Glitch app.

Glitch Wizard – Easily the best Glitch app out there.  If you're new to the Glitch scene, this is where you want to start.  The app offers 30 filters that will distort your image in a specific way, most of which can have their intensity set by a user-manipulated slider.  It also includes a suite of “audio glitches” that are similar to this technique using Audacity.  The best part is that it allows you to animate your glitches and export them as video or GIFs.  (Price: $1.99)

Glitché – Similar to the more popular Decim8, Glitché is a suite of filters rather than a detailed editor, but it’s effects are still worth a test drive. Sadly, you can only use one effect at a time.

Glitchee – Lots of sliders and things, which is nice because I like to feel like I have a little bit of control over my errors. No crashes and easy to use UI.

Glitchr – Straightforward app that cycles through a series of Jpeg glitches on your image.

GLTCH – Edit photos or GIFs.  A bit on the slow side when working with Gifs

Hyperspektiv -  A personal favorite of mine.  This bundle of 27 super trippy video glitch filters. The best feature of this app is that the viewfinder acts as a X / Y parameter control for the filter effects – slide your finger to the right and the filter will move faster, slide upwards and the effect will become more intense. You can use this to distort and tweak the video in realtime. 

iColorama S - Largely for adding filters to photos, this app does off Glitch effects.

iGlitch – An excellent app that offers RGB panels, layering, and feedback options

Omohide Breaker – Swiping in different directions applies different glitch effects, while sliders control on the amount of each effect.

PixiVisor – Converts your image into audio data, which you then transfer and convert on another iOS app. Noise will give your image a sort of visual punch to go along with the music.

Satromizer – The original Glitch app!  Just tap to Glitch.  Suuuper simple.

Swutits – An iPad only Glitch app with few options.

Text2Image – This app lets you create Glitch art from scratch by entering text.


Glitch Art iOS Video Apps

Bent Camera– Strictly a live camera app.  Allows you to fragment and glitch with a variety of effects, including RGB and pixel shifting.

Databender – The definitive app for data moshing videos! Unpredictable but often awesome results.

Glitch Art VHS Photo – Apply a set of filters to videos on your phone.  Watermarks until you pay.

GlitchVideo – Another great glitch video app. This one allows you to take existing videos or live footage and apply effects on top of them in real time. 5 effects to choose from.

Glitch Wizard – Take existing videos, photos, or even Gifs and glitch them frame by frame and save the finished animation as a GIF or video.

Glitche – Glitche is a pretty powerful glitch app that works with photos or video. The basic interface is to pick your filter, then tilt your phone to control the effect. Effects are applied after shooting.

Hyperspektiv – A personal favorite of mine.  This bundle of 27 super trippy video glitch filters. The best feature of this app is that the viewfinder acts as a X / Y parameter control for the filter effects – slide your finger to the right and the filter will move faster, slide upwards and the effect will become more intense. You can use this to distort and tweak the video in realtime.

Moon Shadow – This trippy app applies layers of effects on top of your video.


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