Product overview: onOne Software's PhotoFrame is included with their Plug-In Suite, or can be purchased on its own as a separate plug-in. From the description on the box: "PhotoFrame gives you the easiest way to add film and edge effects to your images. You can also add artistic edges like torn paper, brush strokes or even create full-page layouts with backgrounds, textures and adornments."
Plugs 'N Pixels takes a hands-on look at PhotoFrame and reports the results below.
|If you enjoy spending many productive and creatively fulfilling hours experimenting with a seemingly unending supply of edge and frame options for your images, onOne's PhotoFrame is the perfect choice.
PhotoFrame (going back to its origins with Extensis) has always been one of my favorite plug-ins because it is so easy to take your photos to the next level by popping one or more of these cool frames onto them. Version 4.5 offers over 1100 design elements for you to work with, individually or in combination.
When you first access and launch PhotoFrame from the onOne menu, you'll briefly see PhotoFrame's main interface (shown at top), which for your convenience is quickly superceded by the Library (shown above). The Library is the gateway to the many frame, edge, texture and adornment choices you have to choose from, neatly organized for browsing by genre (or if you prefer you can plow through all categories in one shot).
Each of the 16 categories (not counting the User-defined option) contains additional subsets. For instance, the Grunge set (my favorite; the screenshots above feature its effective use) includes Acid Burn, Acid Burn Controlled, Cave, Corrugated Brush, Grunge, Lines, Rough, Splatter, Toner-Scratch, Torched and Weathered. This set alone is almost enough for most needs!
Another favorite of mine is the Photographic set, with its Antique, Camera, Contact, Emulsion, Film, Instant Film, Slides, Viewfinder and Vignette choices.
Here's a complete list of the main categories:
Adornments, Art Supplies, Backgrounds, Clean Inner Edge, Digital, Frame Shop, Grunge, Gurus, Holiday, Layouts, Man Made, Organic, Photographic, Simple, Texture Overlays, Typographic and User.
As if these choices weren't enough, there is another tab in the Library called Presets. These include contributions from several of the major names in the industry, such as Helene Glassman, Jack Davis, Jim DiVitale, Kevin Kubota, Laurie Excell and Rick Sammon (besides a selection from onOne itself). Each contributor has provided frames and edges in their particular signature style so you can showcase your own images on their level of presentation. Additional presets can be downloaded from the onOne Exchange.
Let's describe a real-world workflow for using PhotoFrame. For all of my examples on this page, I first prepped my images (ie, made them look much better!) by applying various onOne PhotoTools effects to them. While each was still open in Photoshop, I accessed PhotoFrame itself (not its shortcuts) from the onOne menu.
With the Library visible, I looked through those categories that I felt would compliment each particular image. The photo of the steps in the screenshot above really benefitted from an Acid Burn Controlled Grunge effect, while the other examples used other options (such as the portrait, which was treated with one of onOne's SX-70 layout presets). In my opinion, the PhotoFrame effects are just as good as the images themselves, and pretty much double the effectiveness of each image.
Simply applying frames, edges, backgrounds and adornments is just the beginning! As you can see in the main screenshot above, PhotoFrame offers not only a layers-like Frame Stack palette for combining and blending multiple frames, but other palettes for fine-tuning the effects. For instance, Instant Frames can be applied in any of several shapes (polygon, star, heart, etc.). You can adjust the edge and bevel styles of the Instant or any Library frame as well as edit the background, border, glow and shadow effects for complete customization.
Of course once back in the main PhotoFrame window you can invoke the Library at any time and go back and forth between the two as desired. And while in the Library you can adjust how the frames are displayed (with or without your image, in black or white and at various magnification levels).
PhotoFrame is supported in Mac OS-X 10.5 or 6 (on G5 or Intel hardware), and Windows XP through 7 (on Pentium 4 or better hardware).
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