It’s Alive! It’s Alive!

By Mark

Back in the 28 January blog I was singing the praises of the new features found in the OnOne Perfect Photo Suite 8 while lamenting the lack of updates from NiK software since their purchase by Google.  Well since then there have been two rays of light in the tunnel.  One of Adobe’s Photoshop most engaging engineers/managers decided it was time for a change.   John Nack moved over to Google and is now working on their imagery software. Just two weeks ago, Nik introduced a major update to a previously sort of blah module in the Nik Collection.  The Analog EfexPro2 lets you add a lot of film effects and transforms your images as if they were shot with some very different cameras.  http://jnack.com/blog/2014/05/14/introducing-analog-efex-pro-2-part-of-the-nik-collection/

Like the other members of the Nik collection, you can edit them directly from Lightroom or open the image first in Photoshop.  

The top level menu illustrates the kinds of things you can accomplish. I started out with one of the models from PSW and what is a decent shot.

 The first pull-down menu gives you choices for various types of cameras-ranging from Classic to Toy Cameras, like the LOMO.  

The Wet Plate camera provides some interesting starting points.  Each of the “recipes” allows you full choice to customize via all of the menu alternatives.  You can vary the intensity of each effect.  

The Camera Kit serves as a blank starting point which lets you build up the precise combinations you want.  The Bokeh menu gives you pretty good control of your depth of field.

 I found the frames option fun as it left it looking like an old image from a camera roll.

Some of the features are things we always tried to prevent like “Light Leaks” and “Dirt & Scratches”.   Now I am not a huge fan of Instagram, or at least of a lot of “retro” styles that seem to be popular. 

Kaitlyn--pretty much already retro cool

Kaitlyn--pretty much already retro cool

But you can indeed quickly make your images appear as if you just found that set of prints stuck inside a scratchy envelope in a dusty shoebox left over from the 1950’s. 

All in all, the entire module is interesting and works very quickly. I am not certain that I would use these every day in my work, but some might.  I am just hopeful that this is just the sign of more updates to come.  Silver Efex Pro3 anyone?