Plugins for Photoshop, Elements, Lightroom, PSP & others



Plugin Newsletter - May / June 2009




COLORWASHER 2.04 WINDOWS UPDATE: Including a 64bit version for Photoshop CS4 64bit under Windows Vista64

POSTCARD CONTEST 2009: Keep sending postcards!

PLUGIN BOOK GIVEAWAY: Here are the three winners

PLUGIN REVIEWS: FocalPoint, Color Efex Pro 3, PGE 7

POLL RESULTS: Do you use the 32bit or 64bit version of Photoshop CS4 for Windows?

NEW POLL: What do you think of Lightroom's External Editors feature (from the Photo > Edit In menu) as a replacement for real plugins?

THE DISCUSSION FORUMS: Photoshop Warnings During Batch Processing

FREE PLUGINS AND TOOLS: PhotoTools 2 Lite, Resize Magic, Beauty Guide Lite / Image Resize Lite, Ventuz 2008 Express, S10 RedEyes

GRAPHICS NEWS: PhotoPlus X3, Camera Raw 5.4 RC, PhotoXpress, PercepTool, MultiBrush 4





Dear Reader,

According to our recent poll almost 1/3 of all plugin users want to have 64bit versions of their plugins. This is quite a good reason to release 64bit versions of our plugin. After releasing a 64bit version of PhotoFreebies, we now released the first 64bit version of one of our commercial plugins, namely ColorWasher. We also plan to have 64bit versions of all PhotoWiz plugins out before the end of the year.

Thanks to all people who sent postcards to our contest. A lot of interesting ones are among them. Keep sending more! We cannot get enough. See below for more information.

By the way, if you do not know what photos to take with your camera and need a bit of adrenaline, I recommend reading the following article about creating great photos by throwing your camera in the air:
Read it and you also know how Adobe came to some of their product package designs. If you break your camera, do not blame anyone else than yourself.

Kind regards,
Harald Heim



COLORWASHER 2.04 WINDOWS UPDATE: Including a 64bit version for Photoshop CS4 64bit under Windows Vista64

As we have already released a 64bit version of our free PhotoFreebies plugins, it is now time to release the first 64bit Windows version of our commercial plugins. 64bit does not refer to the image depth as some people may believe. It concerns the operating system and the processor architecture. So the 64bit version of ColorWasher 2.04 can only be used under Vista64 (or maybe XP64) with Photoshop CS4 64bit. It means a better performance especially with very large image files, because it can now use more than 4 GB RAM.

ColorWasher for Windows is now available as a regular 32bit version and a new 64bit one. We decided to use different installation files for each version for now, although that may change in future. All registered users will get the 32bit version of ColorWasher 2.04 for free. Users who purchased ColorWasher December 2008 or later will also get the 64bit version for free. All other users need to upgrade to the 64bit version. All registered users will get an email with the details within the next 24 hours.

Apart from the 64bit version the new ColorWasher 2.04 release also includes a few new features and bug fixes. ColorWasher 2.04 now supports XP/Vista visual styles and double clicking the label of a control resets it to its default value. ColorWasher's plugin file size was reduced to less than 2/3 of the previous version, because it is now created with another compiler and development system. So it is leaner, marginally faster and consumes a bit less memory. For more details see the Version History page on the ColorWasher product pages.

You can visit ColorWasher pages at



POSTCARD CONTEST 2009: Keep sending postcards!

Since the last newsletter we have received a lot of postcards for the contest. So far 105 postcards have arrived and many people have sent more than just one card. This is still not much compared with the 20 prizes that can be won. So at the moment your chance to win is 20%, which is quite a lot compared with many other contests.

Especially for contest category #1 there were only 21 postcards. It seem that people like it better to create postcards of their own than buying one and sending it to us. So if you purchase a postcard of your location and send it to us your chances to win are even better, actually 50% at the moment.

So far more than 350 people have registered for the contest. We hope that everyone who registered will really send a postcard. So we are looking forward to your creative and interesting postcards!

You can still request participation in the contest at the contest pages at



PLUGIN BOOK GIVEAWAY: Here are the three winners

Lark Books recently donated three copies of the book "Digital Photographer's New Guide to Photoshop Plug-Ins" by Jim Zuckerman and Scott Stulberg. More than 700 people participated in the Give-Away on our web site. But there can only be three winners. And here they are:

Lode Vlayen, Belgium
Peter j8100, UK
Stanley Warzecha, USA

Congratulations to the winners! If you were not so lucky, you can still have a look at the book in your local or online book store and decide if you want to buy it.

For more information on the plugin book see



PLUGIN REVIEWS: PhotoGraphic Edges 7, FocalPoint, Color Efex Pro 3

This month our reviewers tested three major plugin products from Auto FX, OnOne and nik.

Auto FX PhotoGraphic Edges 7 was reviewed by two people, so we have two independent reviews. Robert van de Voort (aka Digiteyez) writes that it "offers the lot. It is not just about frames, it is a concept that takes your image beyond the square." and also compares it to the competition. A second review was written by Kay M Kuhnlein, who is a big fan of PGE from Version 1 on. He writes that users "will be fascinated by the sheer amount of extraordinary frame effects". He also gives a few tips on using PGE 7 and shows two image examples of what he achieved with it. Read both reviews at

Robert van de Voort also reviewed OnOne FocalPoint. With it he is able " to create in 90% of the time a perfect focused area which I otherwise may not have been able to create in reality." He also points out that Alienskin Bokeh is "offering us a total different concept" compared to FocalPoint, although "there are crossover fields". Read more at

In his nik Color Efex Pro 3 review Rick Siegert comes to the conclusion that "It has speeded up my work flow, and made the changes and adjustments easier". What more he has to say about it can be read at

If you own a certain plugin, you are welcome to post your own review at the following URL. If you want to read some more reviews from other people please also visit



POLL RESULTS: Do you use the 32bit or 64bit version of Photoshop CS4 for Windows?

205 people voted in the recent poll about the 32bit vs 64bit version of Photoshop CS4 for Windows. Here are the results:

19% - I only use the 64bit version all of the time and I rather avoid 32bit plugins than using the 32bit version of Photoshop CS4.

11% - I mainly use the 64bit version, but I feel forced to switch to the 32bit version in order to use 32bit plugins.
3% - I mainly use the 64bit version and do not mind using the 32bit version of Photoshop in order to use some plugins.

11% - I mainly use the regular 32bit version, although I would be able to use the 64bit version of Photoshop CS4.
32% - I only use the regular 32bit version of Photoshop CS4, because I do not have the 64bit version of Windows Vista or XP.
24% - I use an older version of Photoshop.

33% of all users regularly use the 64bit version of Photoshop CS4 for Windows. Another 11% would be able to use it, but does not do it regularly. 67% still use the 32bit version mainly. 19% abandon 32bit plugins rather than giving up the 64bit version of Photoshop. 30% prefer using 64bit versions of Photoshop plugins. 76% use Photoshop CS4 and 24% use an older version of Photoshop.

So at the moment 30% of all users seem to have a need for 64bit versions of Photoshop plugins. And plugin developers may lose up to 19% of their customers if they do not provide one. These numbers are expected to increase in future.

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



NEW POLL: What do you think of Lightroom's external editor feature (from the Photo > Edit In menu) as a replacement for real plugins?

Lightroom 2 does not offer a sophisticated plugin architecture like that of Photoshop. It is possible to create export plugins, which are plain scripts, and there is an external editor feature that lets you pass images from Lightroom to other standalone applications including Photoshop. Some plugin manufacturers have started to offer "Lightroom plugins", which are in fact standalone versions of their Photoshop plugins that are used as external editors from the Photo > Edit In menu in Lightroom. This is certainly a step in the right direction, but these external editors still cannot compete with the internal non-destructive effects of Lightroom. Hopefully the situation will change with Version 3 of Lightroom and Adobe will provide an SDK for developing real Lightroom plugins.

Anyway, we would like to hear your opinion about Lightroom's external editor feature. There are five options for expressing your opinion about it.

Please vote at the bottom of the page at



THE DISCUSSION FORUMS: Photoshop Warnings During Batch Processing

Here is a recent post from The Plugin Site Forums:

Photoshop Warnings During Batch Processing
trodas wrote: "... Using a batch file I need to convert (for gif animation) some (more) tga files ... These files containing Alpha Channel. ... The Alpha Channel cause Photoshop keep asking me, if I want to save the changed image for each of these files. Holding the "N" key helped to straighten things up, however I do wonder ... how to get rid of the Alpha Channel or suppress the warning when closing the file..."

Well, seems there have not been so many posts lately on the forum and most of the other issues that were discussed were solved. Anyway, if you have a question or would like to hear other peoples' opinion on a certain topic, do not hesitate and visit the forum at



FREE PLUGINS AND TOOLS: PhotoTools 2 Lite, Resize Magic, Beauty Guide Lite / Image Resize Lite, Ventuz 2008 Express, S10 RedEyes

One Software offers a free version of PhotoTools 2 (for Win/Mac). PhotoTools 2 Lite includes 14 of the most popular effects from the commercial versions of PhotoTools 2.

Fsoft offers a free standalone version of Resize Magic (for Windows, Intel Macs and Linux). It offers a high-quality algorithm similar (but better) to Lanczos. It also allows you to resize many images in a single step and is also meant for downsizing images for maximum quality. Resize Magic is also available as a commercial plugin for Photoshop CS3 and CS4.

The Tint Guide web site of Two Pilots offers free versions of various commercial image editing tools (for Windows). Beauty Guide Lite lets you retouch portrait photos. It combines the Cosmetic and MakeUp Guide Lite tools, so you basically only need to get Beauty Guide Lite. Image Resize Lite on the other hand changes the image size and aspect ratio. The commercial versions also include a Photoshop plugin version of the tools.

Ventuz 2008 Express (for Windows) is a free application for developing interactive 2D and 3D real time visualizations, installations and presentations. It can be used for commercial and non-commercial purposes. It consists of Express Designer, a graphical UI that includes Design, Authoring, Animation and Compositing tools, and Express Presenter, a presenting environment for scenes developed with Express Designer. There are also more advanced commercial versions of Ventuz 2008 available.

S10 RedEyes is a freeware tool (for Windows) reducing red eyes in digital photos. It lets you adjust eye color, eye brightness and pupil brightness after selecting the eye area by hand. The "Use Replacement Eye" option inserts a normal-looking eye into the selected area, while still allowing you to fine-tune brightness and color. S10 RedEyes also offers a few image editing and printing options.



GRAPHICS NEWS: PhotoPlus X3, Camera Raw 5.4 RC, PhotoXpress, PercepTool, MultiBrush 4

Serif PhotoPlus X3 is a digital image editing application (for Windows). It supports Photoshop documents, Photoshop plugins, layers, masks, smart filters, 48bit images, HDR images, Camera Raw images and many effects and artistic styles. It offers QuickFix, Makeover and Print Studio tools, lets you restore and repair old or damaged photos and turns photos into water color, impressionistic and Van-Gogh-style images.

To support 26 of the latest camera models Adobe now offers the Camera Raw 5.4 Release Candidate. New cameras including the Canon EOS 500D (EOS Rebel T1i), Epson R-D1x, Kodak EasyShare Z980, Nikon D5000, Olympus E-450/620, Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH1, Sigma DP2 and 18 Hasselblad models camera backs is below.

PhotoXpress declares itself as the world's largest free, premier-quality image bank with a collection of more than 350,000 images and vector illustrations. Images in the collection span more than 22 categories, ranging from images of people in professional settings to scenic shots from around the world. All images have accompanying model releases and may be used for any personal, commercial or professional use. After registering and completing your profile PhotoXpress gives new members 10 free downloads a day. However, there is one small problem. Other stock photo sites that you pay for usually do not require you to accompany the used images with a copyright notice. PhotoXpress does.

PercepTool is a Photoshop plugin that claims to correct images so that they look like the luminosity percept produced by the visual cortex of the brain. The image processing is done by recombining the image edges and optimizing tonal values. There is a Mac version available. A Windows version is planned to follow later.

AKVIS MultiBrush 4 (for Win/Mac) is a standalone application and plugin for retouching damaged photos and enhance portraits. MultiBrush is a new enhanced version of AKVIS Stamp. It features a collection of healing and enhancement brushes as well as cloning and stamping tools.

Back to the News Page



Still got questions ?