October 7, 2008 — AKVIS Software Inc. announces the release of AKVIS Sketch v.8.0 for Windows and Macintosh. The software converts photos to pencil and watercolor drawings. The new version includes a Quick Preview window that saves you time when fine-tuning the settings. Added Exif and IPTC data support. The program is available as a stand-alone application, as well as a plugin to a photo editor. Upgrade for registered users is free.
AKVIS Sketch is an award-winning program for conversion of photos into pencil sketches and watercolor drawings. Make any photo look like a B&W or color drawing, imitate the technique of graphite or color pencil, charcoal or watercolor painting.
The program works in an entertaining way. It allows observing the conversion of a photo into a drawing/watercolor in real time and even interrupting the process when the required result is achieved.
Some special effects included in the program can convert an ordinary photo into a piece of art. Create a blend of a drawing and a photo; imitate motion or add "time machine effect" by swirling the background. Put an accent to certain parts of the image by blurring the rest of it in an artistic way. It proves especially useful when the final drawing contains too many details on the background that divert attention.
These manipulations are easy to perform thanks to the Keep/Drop pencils. To define the effect area, no complicated selection tools are needed. For example, to single out one person at a party, you can draw a rough outline within the figure with the blue pencil, and cut off the background with the green (blur) pencil. When the image is processed, the background will be blurred in a special way – it may look like a slight haze; or be in motion, as if everything around is passing by like on a highway; or the background can swirl like in a sci-fi film. It all depends on the effect settings.
Many photo editing enthusiasts have already appreciated the Sketch’ s features.
Take a look at a gallery of examples (many created by users).
Version 8.0 includes a Quick Preview window for resource-saving fine-tuning of the settings. Now one does not need to process the whole image to see the result of adjustments. The movable Quick Preview window shows the result of the current settings on a small sample in real-time.
The new version supports the Exif and IPTC data to the full extent and ensures that the additional information registered by the camera (shooting date, exposure settings, etc) as well as information and comments to the photo filled out by the user won’t get lost or altered.
The program has documentation in many languages. Now also in Italian.
Sketch can be useful on many occasions. Surprise your friends and relatives by presenting them their pencil portraits. Make a watercolor drawing out of a photo from your last nature shooting to decorate your room. Convert your own photo into a color sketch to print on a T-shirt. Create a comic out of your party videos. The program can be helpful to designers who need to quickly bring images to one style for a web-site or an advertisement booklet.
AKVIS Sketch has a simple interface with a few sliders. At first you can process the image with the default settings and then touch up the photo adding color, or trying different techniques - from pencil to charcoal or watercolor. You can make the hatching denser or finer and change the pitch angle of strokes. After that, you can apply a texture to imitate a painting on a canvas.
Using batch processing in Photoshop or Paint Shop pro (only for the plug-in version) you can even convert a film into a cartoon.
For a free trial, AKVIS offers 10 days of fully functional use. Details are available at akvis.com/en/sketch/index.php.
Upgrade for registered users is free!
AKVIS Sketch is available as a stand-alone application, as well as a plugin to a photo editor.
The plugin version of AKVIS Sketch is compatible with Adobe Photoshop and Photoshop Elements, Corel Painter, Corel Photo-Paint, and Paint Shop Pro, and Ulead PhotoImpact. AKVIS Sketch runs on Microsoft Windows 2000/2003/XP/Vista and on Mac OS X 10.3.9 and above.
AKVIS Sketch sells for $72 USD or 55 Euro, downloadable from akvis.com.
Home users can enjoy the full line of AKVIS plugins in the AKVIS Alchemy bundle (Sketch, Chameleon, Stamp, Retoucher, Coloriage, Noise Buster, Decorator, Enhancer, LightShop, SmartMask and ArtSuite) for USD $325 USD, a savings of $513 over purchasing each separately. For business licenses consult the official web-site. One license key allows activating the software on two computers, for example, on a desktop and a laptop.
About the program: akvis.com/en/sketch/index.php