Plugin Newsletter - January
LIGHTMACHINE 1.0: A New Plugin for Sophisticated Brightness Corrections
PHOTOWIZ CONTEST 2004: The Best Composition Winners
THE PLUGIN SITE UPDATE: Harry's Photos
DIGITAL PHOTO EFFECTS: Scrapbook Plugins Reviewed
POLL RESULTS: Which is your favorite noise reduction
NEW POLL: How much would you pay for an electronic
magazine with plugin tutorials?
THE DISCUSSION FORUMS: Creating Plugins, Gradient Shapes, EC on OSX, CG
Effect, PSP CM Problems, Monitor Calibration, Film Scanner
FREE PLUGINS AND TOOLS: RW Plugins, HotPixel, MaP | Zone, Birgits Chaos,
Tesella, CartaPGM, Orange Photo Editor, Sqirlz Water Reflections
GRAPHICS NEWS: EyeCandy 5, Photolightning, PhotoFixlens,
Focus Magic, MojoWorld Viewer, Texture Collection
PRODUCTS FROM THE PLUGIN SITE
ABOUT THE PLUGIN SITE
As mentioned in the last issue we released a new plugin
in our PhotoWiz series. It is called LightMachine and offers even more
features than our ColorWasher and FocalBlade plugins. We are certain that
it is the most effective and flexible plugin for correcting shadow/highlight
problems and lighting issues in photos that is available at the moment.
A lot of hard work was invested in this plugin and with the ideas we still
have for enhancing it further you will see some interesting 1.x updates
within the next few months. For more information about LightMachine, please
Wishing you a Happy and Successful New Year,
LIGHTMACHINE 1.0 RELEASED
LightMachine is a plugin for performing all kinds of light adjustments
in photos. It combines shadow/highlight, virtual lighting and color-based
correction tools for performing sophisticated corrections without the
need for time-consuming selections and layer stacks. LightMachine can
correct brightness, contrast and saturation in specific image areas independently
from each other. It lets you correct photos taken under bad light conditions
or with bad camera settings and achieve results that rival photos taken
under the best circumstances. LightMachine can be used in dozens of graphics
applications including Photoshop, Paint Shop Pro, IrfanView, Photoshop
Elements, PhotoImpact, Photo-Paint and Fireworks. LightMachine can be
applied to 8bit and 16bit RGB images.
LightMachine basically consists of four different
filters, each split up into a simple mode suitable for beginners and a
Pro mode with more features for more flexibility. The Brightness/Contrast
modes adjust brightness and contrast throughout the image which is nice
as a starting point. The Shadows/Highlights modes give you complete control
over dark and bright image areas and let you correct them completely independent
from each other with the help of sophisticated masking options. The Virtual
Studio modes allow you to place an unlimited number of shadow and light
spots as if you were placing studio lights in a real photo studio. The
intensity, size, ovality, angle, hardness and reflection properties of
each spot can be adjusted precisely. Finally, the Colors modes let you
selectively correct image objects of a specific color by clicking on them.
For more information, screen shots, examples and downloading
a demo version, please visit:
PHOTOWIZ CONTEST 2004
The 16 winners of the "Best Composition" contest topic have
been elected. Congratulations to all Winners! The winning images can be
viewed at the URL below. If you are one of the winners, please send us
your physical address.
You can still submit your images within the next 24
hours to the contest topic "Best Correction". After that it
will be closed and the winners will be selected within the next four weeks.
It would be nice to see some correction from digital camera photos. Most
of the currently submitted images are from very old B/W photos. Please
submit two photos: the original photo and the corrected version. Also,
don't forget to add your name and email address as a comment after uploading.
Good luck to all participants!
THE PLUGIN SITE UPDATE: Harry's Photos
A new page called Harry's Photos was added to the Gallery section of The
Plugin Site. The gallery showcases 88 photo of various photographic themes,
which were taken by Harald Heim from The Plugin Site during the last few
years. Any comments and constructive criticism are welcome. Please post
them by replying to this newsletter.
DIGITAL PHOTO EFFECTS
Issue 20 on the Digital Photo Effects Magazine (formerly known as Digital
Photography Techniques) includes several nice projects. They show you
how to turn anyone into an angel and create dramatic skies in Photoshop,
how to do 3D framing, master mono & duotone, make a photo calendar
and use Paint Shop Pro to put your favorite photo into a snow globe.
The Review section contains reports about megapixel monster cameras and
Harald Heim's Essential Plugin column takes a look at plugins that are
suitable for scrapbooking. The Cover CD contains ten calendar templates,
two and a half hours of Photoshop lessons and two full products for transforming
photos into artwork.
POLL RESULTS: Favorite Noise Reduction Tools
The latest poll with the question "Which is your favorite noise reduction
tool?" received 159 total votes. Thanks to everyone who participated.
Here are the results:
1. ABSoft Neat Image (46) 28.93%
2. Other (43) 27.04%
3. PictureCode Noise Ninja (26) 16.35%
4. Imagenomic Noiseware (11) 6.92%
5. Nik Multimedia DFine (10) 6.29%
6. Kodak AFS DigitalGEM (9) 5.66%
7. Helicon Filter (6) 3.77%
8. Visual Infinity Grain Surgery (5) 3.14%
9. PowerRetouche Noise Corrector (2) 1.26%
10. The Imaging Factory Noise Reduction Pro (1) 0.63%
Neat Image clearly seems to be the preferred noise reduction tool. Almost
1/3 of all voters use it. Because of the large amount of available noise
reduction tools, it isn't surprising that many people use a tool that
isn't mentioned in this list. Noise Ninja which is quite similar to Neat
Image made it on the second place.
We hope these poll results help you to decide on a
noise reduction tool in case you are looking for one.
For more poll results, please visit the Know-How section:
NEW POLL: Plugin Magazine Poll
This month's poll deals with the question: "How much would you pay
for an electronic magazine with plugin tutorials?". Basically such
a Plugin Magazine would be the commercial version of the Plugin Newsletter.
It would focus mostly on plugin tutorials that show in detailed how to
achieve certain effects with well-known freeware and commercial plugins,
but also include a few other sections like reviews, news and quick tips.
Some issues may also include plugins that aren't available elsewhere for
This is just an idea at the moment, but we would like
to know if it would be worth realizing such a project. So it would be
nice if you voted and expressed your opinion at the bottom of the page
THE DISCUSSION FORUMS
Here are the latest interesting posts from The Plugin Site Forums:
PitzerMike wrote: "I'm wondering how hard it
would be to create a Photoshop plugin."
artwork asked: "is there a plugin that allows
me to create paths or shapes and haeve the gradient follow the shape of
hypdezin wrote: "HELP!!! I am running in OSX
and I have been using eye candy 4000 for awhile. Then all the sudden everytime
I try to apply the filter, photoshop quits! What is going on? How do I
Laura wrote: "... if anyone has any other ideas
of plug-ins that could make a photo/ film still look like computer graphics
I would be tremendously grateful."
Ed wrote: "I have Photo Shop 7 and Paintshop
Pro 9 installed. When I look at a photo in Photo Shop 7 it looks good
. When I look at the same photo In PaintShop Pro it doesn't look like
the same photo. It is darker and the colors are on the dull side."
EYE-lene! wrote: "I just got a new monitor &
now the skin color of models in many of my edited images looks too dark.
I am afraid to edit anymore for fear of this problem. Can anybody suggest
CarbonTerry asked: "I have a collection of 8X10"
negs fron the 1920's (over 1000). I would like to find a scanner that
won't run a jillion $$$$'s. Anyone have any feedback?"
For more interesting discussions please visit
FREE PLUGINS AND TOOLS
Rob Williams offers two plugins (for Windows) that are fully-functional
shareware. The Multiple Exposure plugin creates abstract multiple exposure
images from a single photo and the BW Conversion plugin converts images
to B/W with the help of a few color filters. If you intend to use these
plugins, please contribute $20 to Mr. Williams for his efforts, otherwise
he may decide to make his plugins fully commercial.
HotPixel is a plugin (for Windows) for removing hot pixel noise from digital
images. Hot pixels often occur when on long exposure photos. This plugin
automatically detects and removes hot pixels without degrading the image.
Although HotPixel is free to use, the author would be delighted with a
MaP | Zone FREE is a texture modeling plugin for Photoshop and Illustrator
(for Windows/MacOSX). It lets you create and edit FX-Maps. It is based
on a set of 400+ presets, which can be modified with special tools to
create non-photorealistic texture effects.
Birgits Chaos is a set of 19 plugins (for Windows) that produce nice fabric
patterns. They were created with FilterMeister.
Eric Jones also offers two nice plugins (for Windows) called Tessela and
Check Out. They generate nice kaleidoscopic and chess-like patterns.
CartaPGM (for Mac) is a Photoshop plugin that reads and writes files in
the Portable Gray Map (PGM) format.
Orange Photo Editor is a small and simple freeware tool (for Windows)
for viewing, managing and publishing photos on your web site. It creates
thumbnails, resizes photos and generates HTML pages.
Sqirlz Water Reflections is a freeware (for Windows) for creating animater
water effects. Its pool simulation reflects the scene and lets you choose
the ripple type, wave size and perspective. The animations can be saved
as Macromedia Flash (SWF) files and AVI video clips.
AlienSkin Releases Photoshop Filter Collection EyeCandy 5: Nature
Nature is the second offering in a three-part upgrade to the Win/Mac Photoshop
plugins in Eye Candy 4000, providing such effects as fire, smoke, rust,
snow and ice. A demo is available.
Photolightning Photoshop Automation Plugins Introduced
This suite of six Windows plugins automates such tasks as communicating
with clients, backing up work and batch processing images. Free trial
HumanSoftware Ships PhotoFixlens 2.0 Plugin
PhotoFixlens for Mac/Win corrects barrel and pin-cushion lens distortion
produced by zoom and wide-angle lenses. The new version adds the ability
to correct perspective distortion, as well as eliminate lens vignetting
Focus Magic 3 for Blur Reduction Released
Version 3 of Acclaim Software's solution for correcting out-of-focus blur
and motion blur in photographs comes as a Mac/Win pluigin and Windows
standalone app. Demo versions available.
Free Pandromeda MojoWorld 3 Viewer Released
The viewer is a free application for Mac and Windows, that lets users
explore, render and animate artwork generated with MojoWorld 3 Standard
Edition and Professional Edition. Fun stuff.
NewTek Releases Sixth Free Texture Collection
The new set includes 50 high-resolution textures of concrete, nature,
soil, stone and wood, with the majority at a resolution of 2,304 x 1,728
in JPEG format.
For daily graphics news updates, visit
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