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Snap Art 3 Review


(also see the Dynamic Auto-Painter review)
May 2012

Alien Skin's Snap Art 3 is a creative tool which applies artistic effects to photographs. It's available as a plugin for Photoshop, Photoshop Elements, and as an extended editor for Lightroom. This review was written using the plugin for Elements. With Snap Art 3 you can add a varitey of drawing and painting styles to any photo, such as Color Pencil, Crayon, Oil Paint, and Watercolor. All the different styles have default settings but can be highly customized. You can adjust the brush size, lighting, brightness, coverage amounts, canvas type and much more. The controls are easy to use and the Alien Skin web site has many great tutorials to help you along. Here's an example using the Oil Paint effect:

Snap Art 3 Example
Original.

Snap Art 3 Example
With Oil Paint effect added. 

Here's another example using the Watercolor effect...

Snap Art 3 Examlple
Original. 

Snap Art 3 Example
With Watercolor effect added. 

I found that one of the best uses for Snap Art 3 is for "missed" shots. By a missed shot I mean one that doesn't look quite right, ie it's out of focus, the lighting is bad, or the subject is boring. In the example below you can see the original is a little out of focus and all the trees seem to be blended together. By adding the Oil Paint effect and boosting the saturation a little I transformed a poorly shot, uninteresting photo into a work of art so to speak.

Snap Art 3 Examlple
Original. 

Snap Art 3 Example
Processed with Snap Art 3 plugin. 

 

Snap Art 3 is a lot of fun to use. If you're in the business of selling prints it can be an invaluable tool. It will open up a whole new area for you selling fine art, instead of just fine art photos. For the casual photographer Snap Art 3 offers another fun way to enjoy your hobby. You can get very creative experimenting with all the different styles. Photos processed with Snap Art make great gifts. Friends and relatives will love seeing themselves depicted as a painting or drawing. The only drawback of the plugin is the price. It's a little steep at $199. You can download a free trial of Snap Art 3 from the Alien Skin website here.

 

(Snap Art 4 has now been released. The price has been reduced to $99. As before, a free trial is available from the link above).



 



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