Plugins for Photoshop, Elements, Lightroom, PSP & others



Plugin Newsletter - January/February 2012




COLORSTYLER PREVIEW: Have a look at our up-coming product

INSTALLATION UPDATES: Support for AfterShot Pro, Photoshop CS6 Beta, Paint Shop Pro X4, Corel Painter, Paint.NET, Zoner Photo Studio 13+, Artweaver Plus, ArcSoft PhotoStudio

: Alienskin Snap Art 3

POLL RESULTS: In what format(s) do you usually shoot digital photos? In which new commercial plugin(s) from The Plugin Site are you most interested?

NEW POLLS: For which application(s) are you interested in buying plugins and add-ons? Are you editing photos on a mobile device?

THE DISCUSSION FORUMS: Problem opening RAW file in Photoshop CS4, Color Problem in Photoshop

FREE PLUGINS AND TOOLS: Graphicxtras plugins, AlphaPNG format plugin, Zoner Photo Studio 14 Free, Ashampoo Photo Optimizer Free

GRAPHICS NEWS: Softener2 64-bit, Adobe Upgrade Drama, Bibble becomes After Shot Pro, Painter 12.1, PSP X4 SP1, Blow Up 3






Dear Reader,

If We are still working on our latest ColorStyler product. As usual it requires more time than expected to make it work smoothly and comply with our own high demands. But now it will not take very long until it is ready.

Corel acquired Bibble Labs last year and released the new AfterShot Pro application (for Win/Mac/Linux). AfterShot Pro is based on Bibble Pro, a RAW converted and image processing tool. With Corel behind his back this tool is definitely going to become more popular. It already features something that none of the competition offers: a tightly integrated plugin interface. Unlike the external editing feature of the competition AfterShot Pro supports plugins that do not disrupt the workflow and become a part of the UI. So we are seriously considering producing AfterShot versions of our plugins.

Painter 12.1 is the fourth application that supports 64-bit Photoshop plugins. Unfortunately only under Windows and not on the Mac. On the Mac you still only have the choice between Photoshop and Photoline. If you run Painter 12.1 under Windows 64-bit, you can neither use 32-bit Photoshop plugins with it, because no 32-bit version of Painter is installed. Hopefully Corel will rethink that and add an option to install Painter 32-bit under Windows 64-bit.

Things have started to move somewhat in the Adobe upgrade drama. Startled up by user protests Adobe will now allow users of CS3 and CS4 to directly upgrade to CS6 (and skip the CS5 upgrade) until the end of 2012. From 2013 on people still have to buy every CS upgrade if they do not want to pay the full price again. More in the Graphics News section below...

Finally here is something to smile about: The Cultural Excesses of Fotoshop by Adobé

Sincerely Yours,
Harald Heim

The Plugin Site




Have a look at our up-coming product

ColorStyler is still under development, but it will not take that long anymore until it is ready. We are working on making it even better and adding more effect options and presets.

ColorStyler will enable you to enhance your photos in numerous ways to make them look their best and add your own personal style. The most remarkable features, which are not available in our other products so far, are preset thumbnails, a curve tool, a masking brush tool and a more flexible UI. ColorStyler will include hundreds of presets for simulating color films, color filters and various other traditional photography effects as well as special effects.

For more information and for subscribing for the release news go to
ColorStyler product page



Support for Bibble/AfterShot Pro, Photoshop CS6 Beta, Paint Shop Pro X4, Corel Painter, Paint.NET, Zoner Photo Studio 13/14, Artweaver Plus, ArcSoft PhotoStudio

The installers of our plugin and standalone products were updated to support various new applications. The software itself remains the same.

The standalone versions of the PhotoWiz products now automatically install as an external editor into AfterShot Pro and Bibble 5. Our Plugin Installer, which is delivered with all Photoshop plugins, now supports Photoshop CS6 (Beta), Paint Shop Pro X4, Corel Painter, Paint.NET, Zoner Photo Studio 13 and 14, Artweaver Plus and ArcSoft PhotoStudio.

For more information see the
Product pages



Alienskin Snap Art 3

Our reviewer Kay Kuhnlein, who is a big fan of painting effects, took a look at the latest release of Alienskin's paint effects plugin Snap Art. As there are already a lot of Snap Art examples based on photos available, he decided to try his luck with clipart and modern art images.

You can read the review ins the
Reviews section



Poll 1: In what format(s) do you usually shoot digital photos?

277 people participated in this poll, the results are as follows:

1. RAW 45%
2. JPEG 30%
3. JPEG and RAW 21%
4. DNG 2%
5. I don´t know 1%
6. JPEG and DNG 0.3%

The poll reflects that almost half of all voters take their digital photos exclusively in RAW format. If you add the 21% that use both RAW and JPEG, it is two thirds of all voters that shoot RAW. JPEG is the first selection for almost one third of all voters. Adding the 21% we get 51% of all voters shooting JPEG. Still, we can assume that most people who shoot both RAW plus JPEG will edit the RAW files and use the JPEGs for quickly passing on the photos. As DNG is supported by few cameras, it is the preferred option for very few people.

Poll 2: In which new commercial plugin(s) from The Plugin Site are you most interested?

In this poll 416 people cast their vote:

1. A Masking/Cutout Plugin 12%
2. B/W Styler 2 Upgrade 11.5%
3. A Lens/Perspective Correction Plugin 10.8%
4. A Creative Focus Plugin 9.1%
5. A Portrait Retouching Plugin 8.9%
A Combined PhotoWiz Plugin 8.9%
6. ColorWasher 3 Upgrade 7.9%
7. ContrastMaster 2 Upgrade 7.5%
8. A Image Sizing Plugin 7.2%
9. A Edge/Vignette/Frame Plugin 6.3%
10. LightMachine 2 Upgrade 5%
11. Other 4.8%

Similar to a previous poll a good masking/cutout plugin is still desired by many people. As we did not want to risk producing something average, we did not work on such a plugin yet, but we may develop one in future. Surprisingly a lens/perspective correction plugin is also highly anticipated, although such a feature was included in the latest Photoshop and Lightroom releases. Its auto feature completely failed on my own very common camera/lens combinations, so maybe I am not the only one.

We have been thinking of a combined PhotoWiz plugin with simplified features from all PhotoWiz plugins. We are slowly working in that direction. B/W Styler and ColorWasher upgrades are also high on the to-do list.

For more poll results please visit the
Resources section



For which application(s) are you interested in buying plugins or add-ons?
Are you editing photos on a mobile device?

Last year there was a poll about which application are favored for processing photos. This time we would like to know which applications are enhanced with commercial plugins and add-ons. The second poll deals with editing photos on phones and tablet computers.

Click here to vote...



Problem opening RAW file in Photoshop CS4, Color Problem in Photoshop

Here are the latest posts on the forums:

Problem opening RAW file in Photoshop CS4
Allen-H wrote: "I use a Panasonic Lumix FZ45 camera and if I shoot in Raw, CS4 cannot open the file to edit, the files have the suffix RW2 I am unable to find a progrmme that will do it..."

Color Problem in Photoshop
alijayadv wrote: "So...a while ago my photoshop just decided it was going to f*ck up all its colours. I can't use the gradient tool without it looking rough and creating colour distortion. Even my colour palette has a visible distortion.
And as you can see from this screenshot - every time I copy and paste an image from the internet this is what it does to it."

Please feel free to post suggestions or start a discussion topic at
The Plugin Site Forum



Graphicxtras plugins, AlphaPNG format plugin, Zoner Photo Studio 14 Free, Ashampoo Photo Optimizer Free offers six new Photoshop plugins (fro Windows) for free in addition to the gothic plugin, which has been available for quite some time. They produce blur, color, smear and noise effects and are called Fuzzy, SolarFire, Percent Add, Circular Smudge, Phazed and Blur Noise. If you like the crazy effects of the good old Andrews Filters, you will love these. You can buy various collection with more of these plugins from Graphicxtras.
Visit website...

The AlphaPNG format plugin (for Windows) saves semi-transparent images in 8-bit PNG format. It lets you choose a color palette and automatically optimizes the image into a high quality 256-color PNG image. It is fully functional without any limitations, but the developer asks you to donate some money if you like it.
Visit website...

Zoner Photo Studio 14 Free (for Windows) is a tool for viewing, editing, managing and sharing photos. It also creates 3D pictures, contact sheets, calendars and greeting cards. There is an enhanced commercial version, which supports Photoshop plugins.
Visit website...

Ashampoo Photo Optimizer Free (for Windows) is a one-click photo enhancement tool, which enhances the brightness, contrast, saturation and sharpness of photos. You simply select an image, rotate it if necessary, click the Optimize button and then the Save button. This is take-it-or-leave-it tool as you can either accept the enhancement or forget about it. There is a commercial version of it, which offers a few manual options and additional effects.
Visit website...

For more free plugins and tool, please visit the
Resources section



Softener2 64-bit, Adobe Upgrade Drama, Bibble becomes After Shot Pro, Painter 12.1, PSP X4 SP1, Blow Up 3

namesuppressed released a 64-bit version of its Softener 2 plugin (for Windows). It adds a dreamy, glossy or soft focus effect with the help of 8 focus types and 14 built-in presets.
Visit website...

Adobe is rowing back: The announcement that owners of CS4 and earlier versions would not be able to directly upgrade to Creative Suite 6 last November caused an earthquake within the Photoshop Community. This was a striking change with regard to Adobe´s traditional customer policy and would have caused serious financial disadvantages especially for smaller companies and individual users. Now Adobe seems to have reconsidered this policy and allows its users once more to upgrade to CS6 from CS3 and CS4 until the end of 2012. But from 2013 on customers will either have to purchase every upgrade or subscribe to the upcoming cloud service to avoid paying the full price again when omitting an upgrade. So many people may still not be able to afford Adobe software in future anymore.
Visit website...

Corel purchased Bibble Labs, the maker of the Bibble Pro Raw conversion software, last year. Bibble 5.2.3 is the last planned release of Bibble 5. The Bibble team joined Corel and turned Bibble 5 into the newly released Corel product AfterShot Pro. It still supports Mac and Linux, although Corel mainly develops Windows applications. Unlike its competitor Adobe Lightroom it also supports direct image file access, layers, regions and fully-integrated plugins and costs only one third as much.
Visit website...

The Corel Painter 12.1 (for Win/Mac) update contains various improvements and fixes. After support for Photoshop plugin was dropped in a previous release, it is back again. Under Windows it supports 32-bit or 64-bit plugins (depending on your Windows edition) and on the Mac only 32-bit plugins can be used with it.
Visit website...

Service Pack 1 for PaintShop Pro X4 is available. It includes new color workspace options, HDR workflow improvements, enhanced RAW support as well as various fixes and changes. You can download it here:
Visit website...

Alienskin Blow Up 3 (for Win/Mac), an image resizing tool, was released. This update concentrates especially on simplicity. Version 3 enlarges photos more clearly, renders faster and has fewer controls.
Visit website...


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