New Effects in Pixlr Express: Fractured Patterns, Smashed Overlays, Totemic Animals
"More effects!" That’s a cry we hear from people who use Pixlr Express all the time. We know they love new things, and we add them from time to time. Today, we’re adding some of the effects from the brand-new Pixlr Desktop in Pixlr Express for a limited time.
The new downloadable Pixlr for Mac and PC has a lot of things you may be familiar with if you’re a Pixlr Express user, including packs like these that we’re showcasing. One of the great things about our desktop app is that it supports higher resolution effects (like these new HD packs). This installed app has more power behind it than our web-based apps, allowing you to save your image (and these effects) at your full original resolution.
This pack will stick around for awhile, so give them a shot and make something new with them. We’re including some very pretty isometric animals called Heroici, neat geometric overlays we called Smashed, and some nice fractured Patterns to give your backgrounds cool textures. It even has a few neat word quotes included.
If you like these and want to try more, download the new app. It’s chock full of new effects, and we’ll be adding more as the app grows.
We spent four days at Fan Expo in Toronto spreading the word about Pixlr.
We took a boatload of photos of cosplayers, some of which you can see on our Instagram page.
We gave away unique prizes like photo ops with two of the most esteemed Star Trek captains: Picard and Shatner.
We want to express a sincere thank you to everyone who entered our contest, had their photo taken at Fan Expo, stopped by our booth and said hello, won a prize, tweeted, retweeted, liked, loved, or otherwise interacted with us. Your feedback this week was spectacular, and we thank you for taking time out of your day to share it. Special thanks to everyone who downloaded the new app to try it out. Thanks to you, we’re #3 in the Mac App Store this week!
That’s it for us for the year. We’re all going on vacation. Actually, it’s just the beginning. Stay tuned for more in the coming weeks and months.
#mysuperpower Photo Contest Winner #14: MrsKBad's Weather Control
We’re down to the final winner in our #mysuperpower Photo Contest. This last winner is MrsKBad on Flickr. Her superpower? The ability to change the weather. Just like Storm in the X-Men. Sort of. What a creative entry. Thank you for sharing it with us, MrsKBad!
She chose the Polaroid Cube as her prize. We’ll get her set up with that, a mount, and a microSD card, which we’ll send to her in Cincinnati.
That’s it, everybody! The contest is over, but we’ll do another one before you know it.
#mysuperpower Photo Contest Winner #13: Tammy's Face Plant
We have our thirteenth winner in our #mysuperpower Photo Contest! Tammy — aka @tamdoll on Twitter — shares this amusing photo of her superpower: the ability to see faces in inanimate objects. Very clever. She totally places those eyes from the contest pack in the right place. Nice job!
For her prize, she chose a 6-month subscription to Lootcrate. Such a great prize. Thanks for sharing your superpower with us! That’s prize 13 of 14. One more to go.
#mysuperpower Photo Contest Winner #12: Alexis the Summoner
Winner #12 has been chosen in our latest photo contest. Alexis Greiner (@Alexis_Greiner on Twitter), puts her mind to the task of showing us her superpower. You’re never going to believe this, but she has an elemental power to summon waves at will.
That is the kind of creativity we’re looking for, Alexis! For her prize, she chose The Polaroid Cube, which has been a popular prize in this contest. We’ll also send her a mount for the camera and a 16GB micro SD card, which we’ll send to her in Sea Ranch Lakes, Florida.
The contest is closed to entries now, but we’ll be announcing the last winners here on the blog, so stick around for those.
Silvy from Auckland, New Zealand — aka @Dv_Ch96 on Twitter — shares a very creative illustration of his superpower: He can stop time. Nicely done, sir.
For his prize, Silvy chose the Instax Mini 8 camera. A great choice. Those instant cameras are lots of fun. We’re throwing in a pack of film to get him started. Just a few more prizes to award. Stay tuned.
Manivone is the first person to win in one of our contests twice. She snagged a prize in Easter contest earlier this year. She does a great job of standing out to our judges, that’s for sure. Glad to have you back for this contest, Manivone! Please enter the next one. Your photos always make us happy.
For her prize, she chose the The Polaroid Cube, and we’re sending that along to her in Houston with a mount and a 16GB microSD card. Enjoy it!
We still have a few more prizes to give away, and you only have today to enter. Like Manivone, you can always enter multiple times, so put your creative hat on and show us what you’re really great at.
Muncho Gutierrez (@muchomuncho on Instagram) shares a photo of herself cosplaying it up as Waluigi. Nice evil stash! It’s a great selfie, well-framed and everything. We really love her facial expression. Good job!
Cosplaying is the superpower of many entries in this contest, which isn’t surprising. We’ve met tons of cosplayers at Fan Expo over the last four days, and it’s a formidable superpower. We love that so many people have this superpower, and we had am amazing time at the con.
For her prize, @muchomuncho chose a 6-month subscription to Lootcrate. Each month, she’ll get a box of swag. We get a Lootcrate, and it has a powerful way to make our day every time it shows up.
We still have more prizes to give away, so don’t give up if you haven’t won yet. Still time!
Brian Ross from Los Angeles — aka @daozmoo on Instagram — shares a photo of a linocut and print to illustrate his superpower. We absolutely love art of all kinds, and hand printing is an amazing superpower that we have mad respect for. Brian made this linocut himself. Good stuff.
For his prize, Brian chose a $100 gift certificate from Things From Another World, the giant comics and everything else store in Oregon. Buy something on a mad impulse, Brian! That’s what we would do.
We still have more prizes to give away, so don’t give up if you haven’t won yet. Keep the entries rolling in.
#mysuperpower Photo Contest Winner #7: Kelly the Dragon Tamer
Now this is creative. Kelly Del Valle on Twitter shared this photo of a teeny-tiny lizard breathing fire. Well, smoke at least. What we especially love about this entry is that she used Pixlr Editor to make it and fake it. She took one of the brushes in Pixlr Editor and simulated smoke. Great idea. Making baby dragons breath fire is an impressive superpower to have. Won’t pay the bills, but it’s lots of fun.
For her prize, Kelly chose the The Polaroid Cube, and we’re sending that along to her with a tripod mount and a 16GB microSD card. Enjoy it, and please keep sharing what you make with us.
We’re halfway through the contest, which means you have 7 more chances to win. Bring the entries on.
#mysuperpower Photo Contest Winner #6: CJ Noodlebrain's Super Unseal
We have winner #6 in our photo contest! CJ Noodlebrain from Ontario — aka @Cmdr_Nugget on Twitter — made our judges chuckle with her superpower: opening vacuum sealed fruit cups without spilling any of the juice. It’s very silly, yet we couldn’t get that idea out of our head. It’s a useful superpower, no doubt about it. We love this whimsical entry and are sending her the prize of her choice, the Instax Mini 8 camera and a pack of film to get started.
Keep the entries coming. We have a whole lot more prizes to give away!
Another winner in the #mysuperpower Photo Contest! This is one of our favorite photos so far. @TacktheCobbler on Twitter shares this really great photo of her superpower: daydreaming. Lovely use of color splash, which always catches peoples’ attention. We especially like the texture she added to this shot. All in all, this is a superb entry.
For her prize, she chose a 6-month subscription to Lootcrate, which we think is an excellent prize. They send you a box of swag every month. We’ve set her up with a gift subscription, and we hope she enjoys it as much as we do.
#mysuperpower Photo Contest Winner #4: Morgan, Last Minute Superhero
Winner #4 has been chosen in our latest photo contest. All hail Morgan Dunbar (@GeekCharming on Twitter), who has the power to finish a costume in the wee hours before Fan Expo. We love this patch she’s sewing, and we love that she’s burning the midnight oil to make sure she’s ready to join the cosplay parade.
For her prize, Morgan chose The elvish One True Ring,, which we’ll ship to her by post (sorry, no dragon riders available for delivery). Thank you, Morgan, for sharing your photo with us! We hope you have a wonderful cosplay weekend wearing your costume.
We still have a ton of prizes to give away. Okay, not a ton. Ten more. But that’s still a lot. So keep those photos coming!
#mysuperpower Photo Contest Winner #3: Jenny B Wall Yoga
We have our third winner in our #mysuperpower Photo Contest! @yogiadventurer — aka Jenny B — on Instagram shares a photo of herself doing some serious Spider Man-like wall yoga. Completely unexpected superpower, but one that we admire. From looking at her Instagram page, she’s really good at yoga. She may have additional superpowers of flexibility we haven’t even discovered yet.
For her prize, Jenny chose the Polaroid Cube with a tripod mount. We’ll also send along a 16GB micro SD card. Thanks, Jenny, for sharing your superpower with us!
That’s prize 3 of 14. We’re ramping up and giving away a lot more in the coming days.
#mysuperpower Photo Contest Winner #2: Alexis and Her Good Luck
Winner #2 in our #mysuperpower Photo Contest has been anointed. Alexis — aka @fasteronfire25 on Twitter — shares a shot of a five-leaf clover. Four leaf clovers are for pikers; professional clover hunters can pick out the five leafers. Congratulations, Alexis, on having perhaps the world’s most unique superpower! We like the treatment you gave it with the Studio Poster overlay in Pixlr Express. All in all, an inventive entry, which we always admire.
For her prize, Alexis chose a Jedi lightsaber. We’re digging through our Jedi closet to find the right one for her, which we’ll be sending along in the mail post-haste.
If you’re counting along at home, that’s only 2 of 14 prizes given away so far. Lots more to give out, so keep the entries coming.
#mysuperpower Photo Contest Winner #1: Serena Walking on the Water
We have our first winner in our #mysuperpower Photo Contest! Serena — aka @kuiwi on Twitter — shares a photo of walking on water. Not a bad superpower to have. We love the trick of walking on water, but we especially love the angle of this photo and the way the sunset is peeking out from behind the figure. All in all, this Jesus pose photo has some real character and style.
Amazingly, we found out that Serena is going to Fan Expo this week and will in fact be there today to say hello to us. So she’s going to choose one of the photo op/signing prizes in our prize pool since she actually lives around these parts. She’s choosing to meet and greet Patrick Stewart — aka Captain Picard.
That is only the first of 14 prizes we’re giving away until September 2nd, so keep the entries rolling in.
Today, we’re quite happy to announce a brand-new app. Pixlr is now available as a downloadable app for Mac and PC. You can install it today at pixlr.com for Mac and Windows, or download directly from the Mac App Store.
If you’re already a Pixlr Express user, you’ll notice some familiar details in Pixlr for Mac and PC. You’ll also discover new tools like a double exposure option and Influence Masks that can be used to not just correct photos but to do more advanced editing or create photographic art. Pixlr for Mac and PC brings together the best tools we’ve built over time, including popular Stylize filters that turn your photos into sketches and watercolor paintings.
When you download the app, you’ll be using the starter edition. Starter is free and has many of the features of Pixlr Express for web and mobile. Create a free Pixlr account to unlock Essentials, giving you access to additional effects, overlays, and tools like double exposure. Subscribe to a Pro membership and take advantage of advanced masking tools — as well as everything we add to the app as it grows and evolves. A Pro membership is $1.99/month or $14.99/year.
If you’re a long-time user of our apps, you’ll undoubtedly be happy to see a few of these new options:
High resolution images: One of the best things about an installed app is that it can take advantage of more processing power than a web browser. No compressed images here. You can save your images at their full, original resolution.
Preserves EXIF data: These days people take photos with all kinds of digital devices. Pixlr presents and preserves the metadata your device includes with your photos.
Influence Panel: Available for Pro members, we built this collection of masking tools from the ground up to help you isolate areas or objects and apply sophisticated effects to just those areas. Change the color of a necktie at the drop of a hat or make a background into something illustrated and artistic.
Blending modes: Blending modes can help you place objects into photos that weren’t there before, but it also can be used in conjunction with lots of effects to alter the color and light in an image.
Use your own fonts: Since this is a downloadable app, you aren’t limited to the web fonts included in a web app. Use any font you’ve installed on your system. Add as many as you want.
New effects! If we’ve learned anything about Pixlr users, it’s that they love trying more and more overlays, stickers, borders, and options. We’ve added new effects for all three versions, and we’ll be adding more for Pro users on a regular basis.
Those are just a few of the things to check out in Pixlr for Mac and PC. If you’re curious about any of the new tools — or if you’ve never tried any of our online apps before — we made a batch of short videos to help you get acquainted with Pixlr for Mac and PC. Give them a watch. Or stop by pixlr.com to download and start creating something new and inventive with your photos.
We launched the #mysuperpower Photo Contest yesterday, and it has a few prizes that are only available for people who will be attending Fan Expo Canada in Toronto this week. Why is that? Because we’re going to be at Fan Expo!
We’ve lined up 5 celebrity signing + photo ops that we’re just dying to give away: Adam West (Batman), Patrick Stewart (Star Trek Next Generation), Jon Heder (Napoleon Dynamite), Karen Gillian (Dr. Who), and the esteemed Mr. William Shatner (Star Trek).
If you’re in the U.S., you’re undoubtedly familiar with the annual Comic Con convention held in San Diego, but (as with so many things) there’s a counterpart Canadian version that is quite popular, too. Every year, our cohorts at SketchBook plop down in a booth at Fan Expo Canada and do some serious drawing to show people how to make all manner of illustrated art. This year, we’re plopping down right next to them, and we’ll be bringing a few things with us:
We’re setting up a photo booth to take lots of photos of cosplayers in their amazing costumes.
Plenty of computers, iPads, and iPhones so people can try out our apps, take some photos, and enter our contest.
A huge — HUGE — monitor to show people how to use our apps and show off some of the entries in our photo contest. I mean, it’s 14 feet tall.
Some partners of ours are bringing t-shirt printers. That’s right, t-shirt printers. So, we’ll be printing t-shirts. Why not!
Of course, we’ll also be bringing the smiling faces of Pixlr employees. If you plan on attending, please stop by, say hello, and tell us how you know about us. Our main office is in Toronto, but we’re importing some U.S.-based folks to join us as well. We want to meet you, so don’t be shy. And if you’re really not shy, let us take your photo!
The #mysuperpower Photo Contest: Show Us What You're Excellent At
It’s time for another photo contest! Our previous contest (“I Made It”) was our biggest contest ever, and we were kind of blown away by all the creative entries. This time around we want to celebrate fan culture — but with a little twist. Instead of celebrating larger-than-life superheroes who invade our movie theaters every summer, we want to celebrate the superpowers of everyday folks.
Enter our #mysuperpower Photo Contest and show us — in a creative way — what you’re really good at. Everybody has a superpower of some sort. What’s yours? Whether it’s super spelling, super sarcasm, or the ability to make an entire bag of tortilla chips disappear, we want to see it:
Take a photo that represents your superpower in some way.
Use Pixlr Express to edit your entry. You can use the effects pack that’s included for this contest or not. It’s entirely up to you how much or how little you embellish your photo. You don’t have to put text on your photos, but you’re welcome to if you want. Just make sure the hashtags are in the text of your social posts somewhere so we can find them.
Tag your entry with two hashtags — #mysuperpower #pixlrcontest — on Instagram, Twitter, Flickr, Pinterest, Tumblr, or Facebook. Enter as many times as you like. (Maybe entering contests is your superpower.)
The contest starts today and ends at midnight on September 2nd. We’ll give away 14 prizes throughout the week of the contest. All winners get to choose a prize from those listed at pixlrsuperpower.com.
There are a lot of pretty neat prizes on there, from cameras to gift cards to comics to Dr. Who TV remote controls to monthly subscriptions to swag boxes, etc. There’s bound to be something on there you’ll like.
Check out the Official Rules or the Frequently Asked Questions if you need help getting started. Contest runs 8/26-9/2. NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED. NOW GET OUT THERE AND TAKE SOME PHOTOS!
Aldrin Gersalia Shows You How to Make a Space Silhouette in Pixlr Express
We’re big fans of what we like to call space silhouettes. These types of photos use the space overlays in Pixlr Express to create some very beautiful images. We’re going to spotlight some of the best space silhouettes out there in an upcoming post, so please join us in making one and sharing it with us. If you’ve never made one before, this tutorial will get you there in no time.
Aldrin Gersalia is a master at this kind of editing treatment. He’s a Pixlr superuser who participates a lot in the Pixlr on Flickr group. (He’s Prisbourne on Flickr). We asked him to make one for us so we can see exactly how he makes it. To make it even easier for you to make one yourself, we also asked him to record his workflow, which we turned into a video:
Want to make your own? There are lots of variations on this technique, but this is the way to create the strongest space silhouette. Here’s how to do it step-by-step using Pixlr Express for the web:
Step 1: Edit your photo.
Autofix. Sharpen. Bump up the contrast. These are a few things you might do with a photo that has a strong silhouette. For this technique, do the kind of editing you would normally do, but don’t be afraid to do it in a bold way. Of course, you will want to start with a photo that is either a silhouette or perhaps even one that is underexposed a bit. One with a big sky will work best.
Step 2: Add Color & Texture
You want to lay down the color that will sit underneath your spacey sky. Some of the Bokeh effects have some strong colors, but you can also change the hue of your image or apply one of the color correction filters. Anything to put some serious color and maybe even texture in that sky. After you do that, use the History Brush to remove the effect you added in the area where your main subject sits. This technique is all about layering in effects, and the History Brush will let you remove any effect you’ve added in specific locations.
Step 3: Add a Space Overlay
Choose a space effect that you like. Some work best with light images, some work best with dark images. Use the randomizer to quickly cycle through space overlays until you find one that works. Rotate it if necessary to work with your subject. Once you’ve chosen one, use the History Brush to paint out the subject just as you did in the last step.
Step 4: Add a Second Space Overlay
Make it twice as nice by adding a second, different space overlay. This is one of the real secret’s to Aldrin’s technique. He makes the spacey sky extra strong by doubling down on the space effect. Paint out the subject with the History Brush.
Step 5: Tweaks
After this, you are essentially done, but you may want to try bumping up the saturation or vibrance or otherwise tweak the color in your sky to make it stand out even more. Or, add some vignetting or a border if you think that will complete the image.
Step 6: Show It to Us!
This is obviously an optional step, but it’s one we hope you’ll consider. We love these kinds of space silhouettes and want to put together a gallery of them if possible. But we need you to point us to them. Shoot us a tweet at @pixlr on Twitter or pop it into the Pixlr on Flickr group so we can collect our favorites for an upcoming post.