Plugins for Photoshop, Elements, Lightroom, PSP & others



Plugin Newsletter - June 2005





PLUG-TALK and GIVE-AWAY: Interview and Prizes from Nils Kokemohr of nik multimedia

DIGITAL PHOTO EFFECTS: Digital Make-Up, Lighting FX, Mehdi Plugins, Xero Plugins

POLL RESULTS: Plugin Management

NEW POLL: Number of Used Plugin Products

THE DISCUSSION FORUMS: Corel Plugin Problems, Skin Paste, Photo Flash, Premiere Pro Plugins, PGE Problems, Mosaic Counting

FREE PLUGINS AND TOOLS: BleachBypass, Pixel Quantification, FP Freebies, MapStudio, RawShooter, Paint.NET

GRAPHICS NEWS: Genetica, Television Pro, HDRFinish, Gertrudis, Screen Calipers, Photoflex





Dear Reader,

After three month I finally managed to carry out a second Plug-Talk interview with a person from the plugin scene. As some of the questions will be relatively similar from interview to interview, it is quite interesting to compare the different answers of these people. I am already planning two or three other interviews and I will try to get one ready every month. I also have the crazy idea to do an interview with myself, but asking myself questions while looking in the mirror would be quite boring, so I'll have to find someone else who can come up with some interesting questions. If you have some questions that you want to ask me, just send them over. I'll hand them over to my interviewer.

Recently I tested several all-purpose zoom lenses for my DSLR. I was overwhelmed by the sharpness of the Tamron 28-300 Di, especially in the 70-300mm range. Its optical performance is simply amazing considering its small size, weight and price. So if you are looking for a great lens for point'n'shoot-action, I highly recommend it.

Harald Heim



Finally here is another update of our popular sharpening plugin of the PhotoWiz series. The purpose of this FocalBlade update is to bring it in line with the other PhotoWiz plugins and to add many bug fixes and improvements.

Version 1.04 of FocalBlade displays selections from your graphics application in the preview, which is a great help for selective sharpening tasks. FocalBlade 1.04 also reacts to user actions immediately now. You don't have to wait anymore until the preview is rendered before you can readjust a setting or drag the preview. This new feature will be especially helpful on slow computers or for people who quickly want to change a lot of settings without using the Auto Preview check box. We have also added two new presets that show how to use FocalBlade for noise reduction.

Other new features include a preset context menu that appears by right clicking the Open Preset folder and using the mouse wheel to operate sliders. Dragging the FocalBlade window is now only possible with the title bar to avoid that misplaced slider clicks move the window. The FocalBlade setup now includes the Plugin Installer tool for copying the FocalBlade plugin to the plugin paths of 25 graphics applications.

A lot of bug fixes have been added to FocalBlade 1.04, too. For a complete list of the changes, please visit the Version History page on the FocalBlade product pages.



We decided to add a new order discount to the Order page at The Plugin Site. You can now get a $20 discount if you order 2 or more products worth a total of $165. Previously the limit was $185. For example if you order ColorWasher, FocalBlade and LightMachine, you can now get them for $149.85 instead of $154.85.

To reward people who buy several products at once at The Plugin Site, we introduced a $25 or $30 discount which will automatically be assigned at a total purchase value of $225 or $265.



The second interview in the Plug-talk series was conducted with Nils Kokemohr from nik multimedia. You can learn how he started as a Filter Factory programmer and founded a major plugin company. You will also hear about his background and impression of the plugin scene. nik multimedia also generously provides three copies of nik Color Efex Pro 2 Standard Edition as prizes for a give away. If you answer a simple question about nik multimedia, you will be able to win one of the prizes.

For the interview and give-away please go to



You can already buy issue 26 of the Digital Photo Effects magazine in the UK, but in other countries you will probably only get issue 25 yet. Issue 25 demonstrates 25 easy ways to improve your photos, how to add new skies to your landscapes, create art from your photos, make perfect selections and much more. You will also find reviews about four skin softening plugins and three tutorials for doing color, old photo and thermal camera effects with the free Mehdi Plugins.

The main topic of issue 26 is "Lighting portraits with Photoshop". Additionally there are guides on coloring black and white images in Elements, creating borders in Photoshop, producing crop circles in PSP, adding sunsets to landscape photos and several more. There are also reviews about four lighting plugins and tutorials for creating selective color, zoom blur and painting effects with the free Xero plugins.



In the latest poll more than 260 people told us about their plugin management techniques. Here are the answers to the question "How do you manage your plugins?":

1. I just set the plugin paths in my graphics application. (110) 42.15%
2. I just install and uninstall plugins. That's all. (51) 19.54%

3. I use a freeware tool. (39) 14.94%
4. I use a commercial tool. (30) 11.49%

5. I have no idea. (17) 6.51%
6. I only use Windows Explorer or MacOS Finder. (14) 5.36%

Quite surprisingly most people assign the path to plugins in the Preference dialog of their graphics application. That is possible in several applications, but Adobe applications usually only allow setting only one additional plugin path, which isn't a big help. One quarter of all people do no plugin management at all and mostly just install and uninstall them. Another quarter uses a freeware or commercial tool that offers plugin management features. Finally only a few use the file management feature of their OS to remove or move plugins around.

For more poll results, please visit the Know-How section:



Our latest poll asks you "How many plugin products do you use more or less regularly?". Of course, we only mean Photoshop-compatible plugins here and it doesn't matter if they are freeware or commercial. Please only count plugin collections with many different plugins as one plugin product.

Please vote at the bottom of the page at



Here are the latest interesting posts from The Plugin Site Forums:

Yani asked: "Down the road in the Corel Forum the question keeps coming up... 'Why doesn't XXX plug in work?' "

Jas wrote: "I am looking plugin for Photoshop. I heard there is plugin in market but i don't know name. I want to use for Photograph. If someone face has any unwanted mark that i can remove vith some one else skin (Skin Paste)"

foxman318 asked: "Can anyone suggest a good photo flash plugin. ..hopefully free..... "

angerboy wrote: "I notice that there are not a lot of free plugins and filters on the sight for Premiere Pro. Anyway some more can be post. Im having a lot of trouble finding them. There were a lot of great ones for the older versions that just dont work in Pro"

jerimg wrote: "I am having problems with using Auto FX Photographic Edges (stand alone) crashing all the time..."

Concetta31 wrote: "Does anyone know of any kind of a plug in for psp that will give a tile count of colors and such for the mosiac feature... for an example the mosiac creator software.... I dont want to buy a new program if i can get a plug in or script or something for psp."

For more interesting discussions please visit



BleachBypass (for Windows) from Red Pawn Media simulates the traditional bleach-bypass technique, which creates desaturated, grainy and overexposed results. A commercial Pro version of this plugin is also available.

The Pixel Quantification filter (for Windows) from Richard Rosenman calculates the sum of a selected number of pixels above a level threshold. It was developed for biological protein strand analysis, although it is suitable for related uses.

The Flaming Pear Freebies collection has been updated and contains 33 plugins now. The Veins plugin draws red, green and blue structures that look like veins, Rule30 produces cellular automaton graphics and PixelTrash tries to imitate the computer graphics of the early 80s.

MapStudio is a set of orienteering symbols for Adobe Illustrator (on Mac OS and Windows) for drawing high-quality orienteering maps in a short time.

RawShooter essentials 2005 is a RAW Converter (for Windows) from Pixmantec. It is comparable with Capture One, but is even easier to use. Even if you are currently using Camera RAW in Photoshop and Elements, you may find RAWShooter quite convenient for processing RAW files that only need basic adjustments. We highly recommend that you download a copy of RawShooter as long as it is still free.

Paint.NET (for Windows 2000/XP) is a free image and photo manipulation software. Paint.NET offers layers, a dozens effects and other standard image editing tools. The semi-transparent windows give it a nice touch. It doesn't support Photoshop plugins though. It is certainly nice for beginners, but can't compete with other commercial applications. You may need to download the Microsoft .net Framework package which is 24 MB large. The setup leads you to the right web page in that case.



Spiral Graphics Adds New Capabilities to Genetica Texture Editor
The latest version of Genetica for Windows adds functionality to speed the creation of textures for use in a wide variety of design projects, as well
as introducing a new Pro edition. Demos for both versions are available.

Tools for Television PRO Plugin Updated
Pixel Post Studios has released version 2.0 of its Photoshop plugin, which adds a palette of video tools to Mac or Win Photoshop CS. Demos are available.

Dosch Design Ships High Dynamic Range Image Tool: HDRfinish
Dosch Design's new Windows utility provides HDRI viewing, manipulation, creation and conversion capabilities.

Gertrudis Plugin Released for Project Dogwaffle
The Gertrudis plugin gives photographs a hand-drawn look within the ProjectDogwaffle line of paint applications.

Screen Calipers Updated to 3.1
The latest version of this Windows utility has new Screen Protractor and Screen Compass features. It's free to use, with registration unlocking more

Site Dedicated to Photo Lighting Techniques Launched
Photoflex, a manufacturer of lighting equipment, has created a site to provide related articles and tutorials for both digital and traditional

For daily graphics news updates, visit


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