Digital Outback Photo
- Photography using Digital SLRs

 

Workflow Technique #004

"Pixelgenius PhotoKit"

Beta Preview by Uwe Steinmueller

 

 

This toolkit is long time in the making by a group of Photoshop masterminds like: Bruce Fraser, Jeff Schewe, Andrew Rodney, Martin Evening and more. We were using a late beta version of the PhotoKit so there might be some changes last minute.

The Idea

Give the users a set of Effects that give solutions in Photoshop and only use as much as possible photographic terms. Also the other idea is to have an effect toolkit which means: mix and match!

The Problem

Developing sophisticated actions costs a lot of time and needs even more experience. But once the actions are on the market it is very easy just copy them.

The Solution

PhotoKit provides the actions (it can do even much more than just plain actions) as a Photoshop automation plug-in and this needs to be licensed (about $49.95 for the full set). At a first glance using the plug-in looks more clumsy than using actions. But as these tools can be used inside actions you can easily build action wrappers.

The Principle

If you run a PhotoKit effect it always will result in a new layer on top of your current layers.


Layer created by a PhotoKit Effect

This has two advantages:

1. You can stack PhotoKit effects

2. You can change the opacity of the new layer and that way reduce the effect

 

PhotoKit comes with 8 sets of effects (for both Mac and PC)


PhotoKit sets

 
B&W effects (2 sets)
 

 
B&W effects come in two flavors: "Color to B&W" and "B&W toning"
 
 
We like these effects a lot.
 


B&W with yellow filter

B&W with yellow filter after a contrast boost

 
Burn & Dodge effects (2 sets)
 


Burn Tone effects

Dodge Tone effects

 
We did not use these effects yet.
 
Image Enhancement effects (1 set)
 


Image Enhancement effects

 
We did not test the sharpening effects in detail yet. But the experience of Bruce Fraser (best articles on sharpening) speaks for them. Also you can use a stronger effect and reduce the effect by selecting a lower opacity.
 
Color Balance effects (1 set)
 


Color Balance Effects

 
Again you can use the Effects and use a stronger setting and later reduce the opacity. Very useful set.
 
Photo Effects Set (1 set)
 


Photo Effects Set


Photo Effects Set (continued)


Photo Effects Set (continued)

 
Also a very nice set of effects. Our favorites are Grain and Soft Edge Vignette
 


Soft Edge Vignette

 
Tone Correction Effects
 


Tone Correction Effects


Tone Correction Effects (continued)

 
This is a must have effect set. The "Boost Contrast" effects work very subtle and effective. Also the Dodge shadows is good to have. Remember you can add more than one of the effects to your photo.
 
Conclusion
 

The PhotoKit is very useful and the price is fair. It will be part of our general workflow. Good work!

 

 
 
 
 

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