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AutoFX Photographic Edges 7

by Kay M. Kuhnlein & Robert A F van de Voort

 

Review Date: May 28, 2009
Recommend? yes | Rating: 10 

 
Pros:

Large amount of presets, great UI, many useful effects

Cons:

None that I can think of

Web Site: http://www.autofx.com

 

Review by Kay M. Kuhnlein

 

data/40/4903screen_pge7_010.jpg

Copyright (c) 2009 by Kay Michael Kuhnlein


There is no denying that everyone favors certain products and brands. Sometimes it happens without any logical reason, it simply arises like a love affair.

 



The new designed user interface presents itself as generous and clean.
Photographer: Kay Michael Kuhnlein – www.a-dezign.de


For me this mechanism starts working when products from Auto FX come into play. This is especially true for Photo/Graphic Edges, which has been my work companion since its very first version. Now Auto FX presents Version 7.0, which I would like to present in my article in detail.

 



The fast track to a frame effect


I installed it in Photoshop CS3 without any problem and PGE 7 appeared on the Filter menu. The new UI appears even clearer and looks promising to one-click-users. Lazy or convenient people should click on the “Select Layer Preset” button. Here they get preset with pleasantly large thumbnails that allows to recognize and judge the effect very nicely. Users will also be pleased with the categorization of the presets that simplifies the selection.

 



A selection of Layer Presets


New users of PGE 7 should not plan anything for a half or full hour, because they will be fascinated by the sheer amount of extraordinary frame effects and won’t be able to decide which one to use.

 

http://thepluginsite.com/reviews/data/40/4903screen_pge7_004.jpg

If you wish, you can edit the effect here according to your preference


For my example image above I have chosen the preset "Black Contrasted" from the category "Darkroom Edges". Immediately after selecting a preset you have the choice to keep the settings of the preset or to adjust it yourself manually. At the left hand side of the main dialog there are various controls for adjusting the effect according to your wishes.

 



The example photo with the edited preset
Copyright (c) 2009 by Kay Michael Kuhnlein


A question that every new user will ask himself is: „Can the effect also be used half-transparent?“ The answer is a definitive yes. It is possible for every frame effect. To achieve it you simply have to select "Background None". That is all.

 



Frame effect on transparent background


If you do not want to start with presets, you can get direct access to all effects with the help of the "Select Effect" button. These edges, effects and frames are clearly sorted into various styles. You will recognize quickly that PGE 7 offers every imaginable frame effect. You just have to look for it.

 

 

 



My favorite cafe in St. Tropez, France, as a triplet


If you want to achieve creative freestyle effects, please use the edge brush feature. With it you can paint over the image areas that you want to make visible. You can freely adjust opacity and size of the brush and you get more brush types than you will ever need.

 

"Edge Brush“ in action –
Photographer: Silvia Kuhnlein – www.a-dezign.de


PGE 7 was a big help with my other retro-popart-style image above. As a base I used three color areas with irregular edges. For that I create two new layers in Photoshop and filled them with different colors. Then I applied a PGE frame effect to each of them. The layers were moved so that the edges only remained visible at the top and the right and left side. The third color area emerged automatically from the colored background. Doing it otherwise consumes much more time.

 

data/40/4903screen_pge7_010.jpg

Copyright (c) 2009 by Kay Michael Kuhnlein


It is hard to see that I am absolutely enthusiastic about the plugin and can only recommend it. If you take my advice, I wish you a lot of success and admirable image results.

 

 

   

 

 

 

Review Date: April 20, 2009
Recommend? yes | Rating: 10 

 
Pros:

multitude of possible choices

Cons:

almost too extensive to make a choice

Web Site: http://www.autofx.com

 

Review by Robert A F van de Voort


A software program that creates edges around images off digital photographs is for me very important. It is one of the few areas where I can create images without substantially altering the content of the existing image. Only the appearance changes, and this in most cases (can) enhance the photograph. Actually I'm bored with the straight edges off most images, everybody has them and I like to be different.
Auto FX platinum edges does just what I want it to do. And even more - it is like a discovery trip, so many choices, I feel like a kid in a toyshop...
The interface of this program works on the general principle of all the previous DreamSuite programmes.


If you have another software program like ' dreamsuite ' you will already be familiar with the layout. The layout of this program feels more intuitive than the other program of photo frame pro no three. This is more user-friendly, it shows immediately the changes you have applied, and allows you to alter the edges or any other attributes you have given to the image on-the-fly.
You can either use this program as a plug-in for Photoshop, or use it as a standalone program. I use it as a standalone program because all my image editing is done in Photoshop, and I consider creating edges something I can do better and quicker than with running Photoshop in the background.


It takes a little while before you have worked out all the settings, are but even if you do not know any settings go ahead and choose a frame. Considering most of us will be quite new to this interface it works amazingly easy and intuitively. Especially because all the preselected options are presented as a frame or image, you see what you get. Not all the options that you can choose from are totally professional-based. You find many other additions, like images for your scrapbook, birthday and seasonal edges, everything has been covered as well as a extensive collection of professional frames that you can put around your image. You can place preselected templates inside your frames, you could almost make an image just out of all the templates provided.
You just have to watch out that you do not get carried away and create an image that is so wildly different from your original, and perhaps this is where there is a small problem, although it's not really a problem it's more an exciting opening, there are so many possibilities to create an image that you are just lost which is the right choice? There are too many opportunities... you may end up with a couple of images based on the same original.


I have been a long-time user of Photo frame Pro number three. Photo frame Pro offers many frames, but it has not got the facility to change each frame in the same endless ways as this program does. It feels a little wooden in comparison to this program. Possibly because I am a very visual person. The flexibility of photo auto fx platinum edition is really beyond belief. When you experiment and you have made a mistake, it is easy to go back to one or more steps back in order to retrieve your original.You can create these new edges on new layers, it is a non destructive program


This edition offers something new, Polaroid transfers, you can create your transfer that looks very closely to a realistic transfer. As I have created many real Polaroid transfers, I really know how to make them in reality, somehow this clinical remake of a transfer in pixels is slightly different but it gets very close to reality, most people will not know the difference. If you carefully select the correct settings you can make it look very realistic, if you know what to aim for.


I believe this is the problem with digital photography - previously we could make images with film only and we could not alter the image very much. Now we can create almost any kind of image, but we have lost track of what is realistic and only achievable with film and real photos. To create a realistic frame, one that looks like it was made 20 years ago, this software program does it really well. Especially the Polaroid borders are very realistic after a little fine-tuning.


If you're looking for a program that will cater for your requirements relating to edges and related work, this program offers the lot. It is not just about frames, it is a concept that takes your image beyond the square. You will find as you dive deeper into this program offers combinations of templates that you did not think of. Everything that you add to your image, it can be altered, it can be changed, you can change the light that falls on it, age your image, you can change the texture, the surface, whatever you think off, there is nothing you cannot change to your own personal settings. I do not think that you will be pushed to upgrade this program for a while as there is nothing to wish for after this. Cloning, masking, invert selections etc. your creativity will be hard pushed! And if you have a particular favorite edge, you can add it to your favorite collection.
And if you don't like what you have done, you can delete it to your previous stage.


Full installation of all the templates or your hard drive is recommended by me, that way you have easy and quick access to all possibilities. It takes a little bit of space, but you will more quickly access all your frames.


I have been a long time buyer of this software developer, I started off with photographic edges number three, even then it was already mind-boggling, but with computer standards as they are now, this program takes the cake.


 

 

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