Plugins for Photoshop, Elements, Lightroom, PSP & others



Plugin Newsletter - September 2002




GALAXY CONTEST 2002: The Final Round

POLL RESULTS: Which is your favorite online school?
NEW POLL: Your favorite Image Application(s)
TUTORIALS: Ageing Photos, Converting FFL files, Creating Natural Brushes
THE DISCUSSION FORUMS: Red Eye Plugin, Explosions Plugin, Textile Design, Removing Duplicate Plugins etc.




Dear Reader,

The Galaxy Contest 2002 is about to close. With almost 1200 contributions two times more images were submitted than two years ago. So it is time to say a big Thanks! to all artists who invested their time and talent to create images and animations for our contest. Also many thanks to all people who have spread the news about this contest and to the companies who donated prices.

Below are news about The Plugin Site, links to new free plugins and tools and the latest graphics news.

Stay creative!

Harald Heim


The final volume of our Photo Galaxy product series has just been released. Volume 5 of Photo Galaxy with the subtitle "Mixed Impressions" is a collection of 1000 royalty-free digital photos on CD-ROM divided into 98 different topics.

The most remarkable photos in this collection include aerial landscape and mountain shots as well as photos of fireworks, flags, lens flares, sheep, sparkles and sunflowers. Quite impressive are also the photos of mountains, valleys, hills, meadows, boats, cars, concerts, religious art and yachts. All photos have been manually corrected for optimum color, contrast, brightness and perspective.

The 1000 photos are provided at a resolution of 1600x1200 pixel (which is 4 x 6 inches or 10 x 15 cm at 300 dpi) as high quality JPG files. They were taken in different places in Spain, Portugal, Germany and Switzerland. The product also includes contact sheets and a PDF catalog to provide a better overview over the photos.

For more information and downloading a demo version please visit


Hyperfoundry Apollo 26 continues its sale of DEFCON, an eclectic mix of DIGITAL ELEMENTS for designers and hobbyists. The DEFCON Design Kit features fonts, icons, digital illustrations, Photoshop Art, and sounds. Only 199 of the Design Kits will be sold, ensuring their rarity and collectability.

Also coming in October is the Flame 'N' Skull Mini-Design Kit - instantly
downloadable, with two fonts + expert vector flames and skulls.


GALAXY CONTEST 2002: The Final Round
Time to hurry and to submit your last images or animation to the Galaxy Contest 2002! The Galaxy Contest 2002 will close its doors in about 12 hours and will not accept any more submissions.

In October a jury of up to 10 experts will be elected who will vote for the best images in every category. Of these votes the final result will be calculated and the 70 prices will be assigned to the winners according to their ranking and wish lists. So if you took part in the contest and didn't mention any preferred prizes when submitting your image(s), please go to your image(s) in the Contest Gallery and add a comment about it.

The Galaxy Contest 2002 page is located at

POLL RESULTS: Which is your favorite online school?
Last month we asked you "Which is your favorite online school?". Here are the results of your 30 votes:

1. LVS Online 47%
2. Other 17%
3. Free-Ed 10%
HTML Writers Guild (3) 10%
4. Training Tools 6% 6%

Clearly LVS won the race. That is no surprise as they offer online courses at a very affordable price. Free-Ed on place three even offers training materials for free, but only if you are lucky enough to download them firstly, which isn't easy with regard to their slow server.

Links to these online schools can be found at

Previous poll results can be viewed at


NEW POLL: Your favorite Image Application(s)
The new poll will be a bit more interesting and already attracted 500 votes until it was started. The poll question is "Which of these image applications and which version do you use regularly?". You can choose between 10 major image application and their appropriate versions. If you should miss an application, you can also use the Other field to enter it. If you have the time, please also post a message on the poll board explaining your choice.

You can submit your vote at


TUTORIALS: Ageing Photos, Converting FFL files, Creating Natural Brushes
Computer Arts published a tutorial on "Ageing in Photoshop" on their web site. It explains how to realistically age people by up to 30 years.

There's a good tutorial on converting FFL files to plugins with Plugin Commander on the site. It is now also linked from the Plugin Commander Tutorial page.

Want to know how to create your own natural-media brush in Photoshop 7? This nice tutorial from Adobe explains it:


THE DISCUSSION FORUMS: Red Eye Plugin, Explosions Plugin, Textile Design, Removing Duplicate Plugins etc.
Here are the latest interesting messages and requests from our Discussion Boards:

Bernhard asks: "I am looking for a free plugin for photoshop to eliminate red eyes... can someone help me with that?" If you can help, please reply at

Guest asks: "I'm searching a plug in to create realistic explosions in photoshop or after effects (Nova explosion for example) for a scifi arts." To replay please go to

rachnasingh asks: "If any one knows of any software which is free to download for textile designing where in furniture , sofa etc can be covered with pattern created by using adobe photoshop"

dspot70 asked "Does anyone know of any easy way to remove duplicate plugins listed in the filters menu?"
Harald Heim answered:"Try our Plugin Commander Light software from . Select your plugin folder in one of the two panes in Plugin Commander and click on the Plugins tab. All plugins will now show up. Locate the dublicate plugin, select it and press the Del key. It's that easy."

chaitereye asked:"I am trying to do something simple like fade an image to use as background stationery to write on. Is there a filter for that or can I do it easily in photoshop? Nobody I asked seems to know. Thanx in advance for your help!"
Harald Heim answered:"To 'fade' an image in Photoshop double click it in the Layers palette to turn it into a layer. Then turn the Transparency in the Layers palette to something between 10% and 50%. If you want to fade it to a special color, create a new layer and fill it with your desired color. Finally drag it beneath the image layer in the Layers palette."

There are a lot of forums about plugins, graphics application, digital video as well as our products, so feel free to have a look and write some lines at


1997 Almathera developed eight Photoshop-compatible plugins (for Windows). Unfortunately Almathera was closed down in the same year. Currently these plugins remain copyright but can be distributed freely in a non-commercial manner. This means that they can be used for commercial design work, but it is not allowed to sell the software itself. The Almathera plugins produce shape, bevel, halo, drop shadow, grayscale, warp, lightning and puddle effects. Although the interface is outdated and displays wrongly with "Large Fonts", you will certainly find one or two interesting effects in this package.

AutoFX releases a second freeware plugin and standalone application (for Win/Mac) called Mosaic. Mosaic makes your photos look as if they were created out of a mosaic tile. Photo-realistic depth, variable tile size and color options give this effect an infinite number of looks. Included with Mosaic are effect presets, a PDF manual and technical/customer support. The plugin requires a serial number which can be requested for free from AutoFX.

Vischeck shows you how things look to someone who is colorblind. You can try Vischeck online, but you can also download plugins for Photoshop or for ImageJ to run. Many pictures, documents and web pages are hard to read for colorblind people (up to 5% of the population) because they cannot distinguish some colors. Vischeck lets designers check their work for colorblind visibility. It is also interesting to anyone who is just plain curious about what the world looks like if you are color blind.

The WinMorph 3.0 freeware (for Windows) is available as a standalone application and as a plugin for Adobe Premiere. It produces high quality morph and warp effects. You can also download full documentation in PDF, tutorials in Flash and sample Premiere projects. Version 3.0 has been optimized for speed and is probably one of the fastest morphers around.

Serif offers various applications (for Windows) on their special freeware web site. You can download old versions of their commercial products PagePlus, PhotoPlus, WebPlus, DrawPlus and 3DPLus. These applications do not offer that much features as top commercial products, but can easily compete with similar shareware products.

BSplayer (for Windows) is probably the best video player around and it is freeware. It may easily gather the same cult status as WinAMP in the audio scene. BSplayer is playing back avi, asf, wmf and mpeg video files and also supports sub titles. It is a great replacement for the slow and clumsy Microsoft Media Player. Localization files for 35 different languages are included.
You need to register before you get access to the BSplay web site, but you will rewarded with 88 downloadable Bsplayer skins.

Geomantics offer two free 3D landscape tools (for Windows). "GenesisII Freeware" is a 3D landscape renderer which provides most of the functionality of the Light and professional versions except for the integration of 3D models, the image overlay renderer and full support for GIS. "Landscape Explorer 2000" is a map and landscape rendering program offering real-time manipulation and non-photo realistic rendering. It is free for non-commercial and educational use, but requires registration for commercial users and users who need larger image sizes.


Discount on Namesuppressed plugins
All Namesuppressed plugins have a 33% price discount at the moment. The regular price is now $US14.95, but now the price is just $9.95. The discount applies to both Softener and the new Autochromatic 2.00 colorizing/colorscaling plugin. The offer ends on September 30, but is maybe continued for a few days if user request is high.

Ulead PhotoImpact 8 Released
Photoshop may own most of the imaging app market, but there are still users, especially on the PC platform, who prefer less expensive alternatives. Among those, PhotoImpact has always been well regarded and the new version adds more functionality for - surprise - working with digital photos.

Human Software Photo-Light Plugin
This Mac/PC filter works with Photoshop 5 to 7 and similar Photoshop-compatible apps. It lets you create light effects, including
glows, fog and shadows, cast through many kinds of shapes, such as windows and grids. Alas, no demo is available.

Updated Andrew's Plugins (Innovations) Volume 2.1.1
This is a mixed set of filters for Photoshop 6 and 7, and other applications, such as Paint Shop Pro (PC only). It includes colourful blur, smear and displacement effects

New Artistry Painting for Photographers Tutorial CD Available
The Write-Design Studio has just released the Artistry Painting for Photographers Tutorial CD. For Mac and Windows, the CD contains brand-new step-by-step Acrobat-format tutorials which explain how to turn photographs into paintings using Procreate Painter. Launches
Kind of a silly name, but they do have a decent database of links to tutorials of all kinds, including almost 1,000 on Photoshop.

Optipix 1.0.2 Update
This free update for all registered users of Optipix adds functionality to two of the plug-ins in the suite, Blend Exposure and Edge Enhancer.

PowerRetouche for Mac Released
A Mac version of PowerRetouche has been released, joining the existing Windows version. PowerRetouche is a collection of 11 plugins for Photoshop and compatible applications for quickly adjusting many aspects of digital photos.

For daily graphics news updates, visit


Back to the News Page


Still got questions ?