Aside from music making, I’m
a keen iphoneographer and digital artist too.
For me, iOS really is a self contained and complete work and entertainment system. Many others are realising this too and enjoy a variety of apps for different purposes.
I’ve had the idea for a long time of featuring other kinds of creative apps but have rarely done so. With the recent acquisition of an iPad mini retina, I’ve been playing catch up with apps in general.
Art is tricky on iPhones and iPods..the small screen is certainly restrictive.
I’m finding the iPad mini screen a healthy “bridge” between iPads and smaller devices.
With this in mind, I have been reviewing to myself all the photo editing and art apps I own. I have so many that it sometimes takes a combo of a few to achieve my goals.
You’ve heard me express my preference for standalone music apps, or at least those that compliment each other without the need of some kind of interapp routing.
So, it goes without saying that I’d like, nay- love a complete photo editing suite on my iPad!
Photo forge 2 was a great app but they switched to another OS and its interface was a bit awkward. So there’s not been any truly feature packed standalone photo editing suite for iOS that I’ve liked since then..
Pixelmator is a very popular desktop app that is used by professional photographers world wide. The development team ported it to iOS and it was even demonstrated at the last Apple event to a stunned audience.
It received the highest possible praise from Apple themselves and has been riding high in the AppStore charts ever since.
Today I tried Pixelmator for the first time and breathed a sigh of relief for two reasons:
1- It is designed in such a way that gentle experimentation will reap you fast results. It’s so easy to find your way around without a manual or video tutorial..
2- It has more purposes than I initially expected!
You launch the app and choose between loading a photo or actually drawing your own artwork. You can even choose a template for designing the likes of posters or flyers.
Once you have chosen your items and format, you get down to editing.
All the filters and fx you are familiar with are there and more..and it’s easy to try them out. If you don’t like the result- no problem ! Press the undo button as much as you need to!
You can add layers, twist things up with certain fx like miniaturise , pinch or kaleidoscope. Add some text, do the cropping and adjust colours, mess with the filters and voila! You have unique high res artwork to export.
If you just want traditional photo editing and enhancement, Pixelmator has you covered with very sensitive faders for applying the filters. And you can do layered fx too.
The general feel of the app is very smooth and extremely stable. The tidy and well designed UI allows for easy navigation and a fast workflow.
Once done, you can export work to the photos app, icloud or even to other apps via the convenient “open in” feature. Not only that, you can export it to desktop to work with the version of the app there.
If you are a photoshop fan, you will be delighted to know you can export it as a photoshop project to desktop!
An amazing, feature packed app indeed. Well worth the asking price and by developers committed to updating it with more features.
Overall I felt like I was working in a visual daw of sorts, it was that inclusive of what I wanted to do.
If you want to keep your iOS device clutter free, start with Pixelmator first because it really does all you need it to!