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Product Review – Paint Shop Pro Photo XI from Corel

Paint Shop ProR has been a favorite graphics software for many years and has a large number of faithful users. It is used by photographers and hobbyists to arrange, organize, adjust and enhance photos. On the other hand, it is used by many artists to create digital art, marketing and web graphics and more. Paint Shop Pro is on its eleventh upgrade and is now owned by the CorelR Corporation. With this latest upgrade, named Paint Shop Pro Photo XI, the software has some new and improved features that will help you increase your creativity and productivity.

The new Photo Organizer is the newest generation of the old browser. As in previous versions, you can use the new Photo Organizer to view thumbnails of your stored images and video clips or search based on filename, date, file type and size, folder location, tags and ratings. Another new feature is the Quick Review slide-show that lets you view images or video clips in full screen mode, make basic adjustments or add text.

Once you get organized, it’s time to play with some of the other new features. The one I enjoyed the most is the Time Machine which you will find under the Effects menu. This new feature quickly converts your photos into representations of what that photo would look like if it was taken with the photographic equipment available in the past. The Time Machine spans several decades starting with the Daguerreotype used from 1839 – 1855, moving along the timeline to Albumen (1855 – 1890), Cyanotype, Platinum (1873 – 1920), Early Color, Box Cameras and finally Cross Process (1960+).

Also new is the Depth of Field photo effect found in the Adjust menu. This effect simulates the Depth of Field created with expensive camera filters. After you select the area of the photo that you wish to be your point of interest, the program blurs the areas surrounding the selected area.

The Crop tool has been improved giving you more control via a new floating toolbar. You can choose one of the preset crop sizes, draw the crop rectangle free form and rotate the crop rectangle. Other new features includes the Film and Filters effects which contains many customizable photo effects including Vivid skin tones and Vibrant foliage which, as the names suggest, enhance certain colors in your photos. The E-mail command has been improved so that it automatically resizes your images before adding them to your email, as an attachment or embedded in the email message itself.

Paint Shop Pro Photo comes packaged with a few extras including trail versions of two of Corel’s software, Corel PainterTM Essentials and SnapfireTM Plus SE. Snapfire is especially nice for those who enjoy computer crafts. It contains several project templates for album pages, greeting cards, calendars and collages.

Corel, Paint Shop Pro, Paint Shop Pro Photo, Snapfire, Snapfire Plus, Painter, Painter Essentials are trademarks or registered trademarks of Corel Corporation and-or its subsidiaries in Canada, the United States and-or other countries

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