November 2013

35 posts

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Snap, Style & Share Winners Announced

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We have a winner! Nine of them, in fact.

If you entered our Snap, Style & Share contest, we’d like to thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We were overwhelmed by the creativity people showed in their entries.

This contest wasn’t just about taking good photos. It was also about what you could do to improve photos using Pixlr Express to showcase an example of interesting design, whether that design was found in nature, in machinery, or in abstract detail. The winning submissions came from around the globe, with four from India, three from the U.S., one from the U.K., and one from Indonesia. This wasn’t surprising to us. Pixlr Express is quite popular internationally. 

What do these people win? First and foremost, their work will be professionally framed and showcased in the Autodesk Gallery in San Francisco. This space is open to the public and popular with both tourists and locals for their regular tours. (Stop by if you’re ever in San Francisco!) The winning work will have an audience of many, many thousands of people, but winners also get an Apple iPad and a few other smaller gifts. Most important, our winners get a great portfolio piece and hopefully a fun experience they can share with their family and friends.

Ready for the next contest? You can sign up to be notified about future Autodesk design competitions here. We’re always planning a new way to help people get creative and create digital art, so please join us!

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When will you introduce pixlr on WP8???

Excellent question, sarah720. We might. It’s something a lot of people have requested. You can put in your vote here if you want. 

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Follow Worthy: Prisbourne

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We’re big fans of our Pixlr on Flickr members. They share some of the most creative photos they’ve enhanced with Pixlr apps. We’ve been profiling some of them lately — most recently k8rry and Sonel. Today we have another one for you with Aldrin Gersalia — aka Prisbourne. His photos are incredibly creative, and we really love how he can take what might seem like a simple close-up of a mundane object and turn it into something strikingly artistic with just a few key effects in Pixlr Express. It’s clear he knows his way around our apps.

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Aldrin teaches Practical Arts to grade 7 and 8 at Escuela De Sophia school in the Philippines. He takes his Canon with him wherever he goes, and he told us he often edits photos before he goes to sleep. Maybe that’s why so many of his photos have a dreamy feel to them. We asked him a few questions to find out more about who he is and what he does.

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Pixlr: Are you a pro or amateur photographer? What kind of equipment do you use?

Aldrin: I am an amateur. Before, I used to use my Nokia E71 smartphone when capturing photos, but I found out those photos from my Nokia are not so good in terms of defining image details compared to those from a dSLR camera. After using Pixlr-o-matic and Photoshop I started dreaming about getting my own dSLR camera to take better photos. Now, I use my Canon Eos 600D and a Samsung Galaxy S2 smartphone.

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Pixlr: What kind of things inspire you? Are there themes or subjects that people might notice show up a lot in your photos?

Aldrin: People who surround me, my profession, my friends, and sometimes my mood inspire me. I always try to capture photos which I think are unique, and I like to join photo contests that challenge me to improve my skills in enhancing photos. I like to use sports mode in my dSLR to capture every moment — especially the fast-moving ones.

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Pixlr: I’m not sure where I learned this, but I think you’re a teacher, correct? Do you do anything photography-related with your students?

Aldrin: Yes! I’m an educator from Escuela De Sophia. I use photos edited in Pixlr Express as background images in my school PowerPoint presentations. Once, after a discussion, some students started asking what tool I used with my photos. Because of that they started using Pixlr effects in their photos and some even joined the Pixlr on Flickr group.

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Pixlr: Is there anything you’d like to see in our app(s) that isn’t there yet?

Aldrin: Sometimes I want to flip images and stickers [horizontally and vertically], so I have to use Photoshop to do it.

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Pixlr: Interesting. You’re the second person this week to request that. You can flip images horizontally and vertically using the Rotate tool in Pixlr Express (which may not be very apparent) but not stickers. I’ll pass that suggestion along to the team.

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Pixlr: Where’s the best place to view your photos online?

Aldrin : My Flickr profile is the best place.

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Announcing the Halloweeks Photo Contest Grand Prize Winner

We have a Grand Prize winner in our Halloweeks photo contest! Our goal with this contest was to get the Pixlr community to make and share photos around the subject of Halloween. We thought that Halloween — which is traditionally celebrated just one night each year — deserved more. So we made it a month-long celebration of anything and everything Halloween related. We’ve given out different prizes every week, and today we’re ready to announce the winner of the Grand Prize, the totally unique Sony QX-10 lens.

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Big thanks go out to Sarah Lewis (silverbutterfly on Instagram) from Essex, England for sharing her winning photo. We love that this image is sketchy, and we especially love that the effects make it almost look like a comic book done in separate panels. It uses quite a few of the Halloween stickers we added to Pixlr Express and has just the right amount of spooky and pretty. To sum up: It’s a great image on its own, she’s used a creative treatment for the image, it’s definitely got some Halloween flair to it, and it uses quite a few effects from our apps. All in all, that adds up to a winner. We’ll be popping the Sony QX-10 in the mail to you this week, Sarah!

Huge, massive, gigantic thanks to everyone who entered this contest. Just for fun, we’ve collected some of our favorites from the competition into a big collage (below). There are simply too many great ones in the contest to list here, but you can always head to halloweeks.com to check out all of the entries.

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Halloweeks Photo Contest Now Closed for Entries

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The response to our multi-week Halloweeks Photo Contest has been huge! Thank you for everyone who took time out to submit an entry. The deadline to enter was midnight on Halloween Eve, and we accepted entries right up until the deadline. Lots of last-minute entries!

Just scrolling through the entries at halloweeks.com we can see that choosing a winner for the Grand Prize isn’t going to be easy. We’ll be weighing all the merits of our favorites this weekend, and we’ll announce a winner next week on this blog and on the contest site and everywhere else we get our word out. If you’ve submitted a photo anytime in the month of October, you’re eligible for the Grand Prize of a Sony QX-10

It’s too late to enter this contest, but it’s not too late to use the Halloween sticker pack in Pixlr Express. The stickers will be available until November 8th. 

Now if you’ll excuse us, we’ve got a difficult task ahead of us — picking the best of the bunch. 

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Pixlr Touch Up Turns 1.1 This Week

Pixlr Touch Up is our new app for Chrome that works really great in conjunction with Google Drive. It’s a photo editor built on new technology that you can use directly through your browser even when you’re offline. This week, we’re celebrating its first big upgrade to version 1.1. Huzzah!

We released this new app in the Chrome App Store two months ago, and we’ve been building it up bit-by-bit to include new features. Here’s what’s new in Pixlr Touch Up.

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More effects

We’ve added five new effects packs. If you’ve used Pixlr Express before, you’ll probably recognize many of these. We’ve taken some of the more popular effects from Pixlr Express and added them to Touch Up. This new app doesn’t have the zillions of effects, overlays, borders, and stickers that you see in Pixlr Express, but we wanted to add some of the proven winners from our other apps to give people options. We’ll be watching closely to see how often they get used, and we’re always open to hearing what kind of special effects should be included in Pixlr Touch Up.

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Google Drive picker

One of the absolute best pieces of feedback we got from our early adopters of this app was the request for us to include thumbnails and a search apparatus for people who are opening up files from Google Drive. People take many thousands of photos with today’s digital cameras and smartphones, and some people drop them all into Google Drive. It makes total sense to have a more refined way to dig into that large pile of photos to find the one you want. Now, you can search by filename or browse your image files a lot easier. We know this will be one of the most used features, so thank you to those of you who asked for it.

Supports higher resolution images

There is a detail about photos that is becoming more important over time: resolution. Camera and smartphone manufacturers seem to be entering a new horse race around capturing higher megapixel images, which means people are increasingly capturing photos that are — resolution-wise — massive. For that reason, we’ve increased the limits for opening high-megapixel images for people who bring a lot of pixels with their photos. For example, you can now open up a 16,000 x 11,000 pixel image with Touch Up. You may not have pixel-heavy images like this, but if you do this will make a big difference.

Supports lower resolution screens

On the other side of the resolution coin, we want Touch Up to be as useful as possible for as many people as possible. To take into account lower resolution monitors, we’ve lowered the minimum size of the editing window of Touch Up. Chances are you won’t notice this detail, but if you have a low-resolution monitor being able to resize the editing window to fit your monitor is essential.

Support for Windows 8

Pixlr Touch Up began as a Chrome App, and it still is a Chrome App, but we’ve added support for Windows 8 Chrome users. This is part of our ongoing roll-out of support for additional browsers and systems. We’re not ready to expand the app to other browsers just yet, but if you’re a Windows 8 who also loves Chrome, you can now start using Touch Up.

Beyond that, we have a few small bug fixes and improvements in this week’s release. Want to know more details about Pixlr Touch Up? Want to ask us a question, share an idea, or report a bug with this new app? We’re available on our customer support forum for feedback about Touch Up and all of our other apps.

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October 2013

44 posts

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Week 4 Halloweeks Contest Winners: JesiMariko and Migor 1332

We have two more winners this week in the Pixlr Halloweeks Photo Challenge! Each week we’ve been giving out prizes, and this week had some of the best prizes of the competition.

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mCAMLITE winner JesiMariko

The theme this week was “Halloween Faces,” and we absolutely loved JesiMariko's photo submitted via Instagram. Fit the theme perfectly. This face has some very beautiful eyes. Nice face! But that's just the beginning. She added overlays and filters — and even some stickers from the new Halloween pack in Pixlr Express — to make this photo otherworldly. Superb job all around. We're putting the mCAMLITE in the mail to Arlington, Texas and wishing you a wonderful Halloween, JesiMariko.

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CanvasPop custom canvas winner Migor 1332

@migor1332 from Houston, Texas submitted a bunch of images to the contest via Twitter, and nearly all of them were outstanding. But this one particular image blew away our judges with its excellent use of Pixlr Express effects. We don’t know who this beautiful woman is in the photo, but we do know that Migor 1332 is hugely talented. We hope to see more of your work in the future. We’re sending you a $179 gift certificate from CanvasPop as the prize for most creative use of Pixlr effects. Print some of your best work on it. It’s going to look great.

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This Week's Halloweeks Theme... No Theme!

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We’re down to the very last week of October, which means we have one more thing to give away — the Grand Prize of the Sony QX10. This unique lens works with your smartphone, or you can simply grab it and take pictures with it apart from your phone. There’s never been anything quite like it, and we bet most of you wouldn’t mind giving it a whirl to see what it can do. 

The Grand Prize will be awarded to the best overall Halloween photo, so you can choose whatever Halloween-related subject you like to create your masterpiece. Just tag it #halloweeks on a few key social networks and look for it on our contest site, halloweeks.com. If you’ve already submitted an entry this month, you’re already entered to win the Grand Prize. Good luck! 

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A Halloweeks Prize: the mCAMLITE

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Our month-long Halloweeks contest has been well-received by the community — even more so as we ramp up the prizes each week. We’ve saved a few of the best prizes for last, and that includes a prize for this week: the very unique iPhoneography-oriented mCAMLITE. The mCAMLITE holds your iPhone, but it’s not exactly an iPhone case. The best way to describe it is that it’s bit like a camera body for an iPhone.

I contacted the company that makes it, Action Life Media, to see if they wanted to sponsor our photo contest and donate an mCAMLITE to a lucky winner in the Pixlr community. They said yes! That’s not totally surprising since they are all about mobile photography. They’re a good fit with the Pixlr community. They sent one to me, and I’ve been trying it out in the Instructables Lab where our office is located on Pier 9 in San Francisco — a great excuse to take photos of this beautiful city. Right outside our window.

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The mCAMLITE unboxed

The first thing I noticed when unboxing the mCAMLITE is that it’s solid. It’s a singular piece of aluminum that has a polished feel to it but that is clearly super strong. I didn’t hurl it across the room to see just how strong it was, but I can’t imagine putting a dent in this thing without using some industrial tools. It’s not designed to be lightweight, which I think is one of its strengths. It’s designed to be durable.

It comes with a silicone sleeve that you wrap your iPhone in before inserting it into the device itself. Obviously, this protects your iPhone, but more importantly it provides a snug fit so your iPhone won’t slide out. In fact, I was a little afraid my iPhone wouldn’t fit the first time I tried it, but it quickly becomes clear that it’s supposed to be that snug. I would be very confident to take this out on a day trip or do something athletic with it. It actually feels like a solid-body camera in my hand.

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It also comes with a combination lens. To be perfectly frank, I’m not sure I need lenses, but I did get some interesting photos out of it. I’m using the brand-new iPhone 5S, which has an even better camera than the still-quite-impressive earlier versions. The lens that comes with it is actually two lenses in one — a wide angle and a macro lens that you can switch out. The wide angle gave me a slight fish-eye effect, which I actually like, but it’s not technically a fish-eye lens. Of the two lenses, the macro worked better for me. They offer other lenses, but if you’re really serious about using multiple lenses you might be better off buying an adapter for Nikon or Canon lenses (which they also offer). The one downside to using the provided lens with my phone is that the new iPhone 5S has a really (really) strong flash right next to the iPhone’s lens, which can sometimes result in lens flare in your photos. Of course, you could always use an external flash in situations like this. All in all, I got a few neat effects from the lenses, so I’d probably use them some of the time.

Probably the most useful thing about the mCAMLITE are the many camera mounts. Joby makes a neat GorillaPod device for stabilizing your smartphone (we gave one away last week in the contest), but there aren’t a lot of other ways to get your iPhone to plug in to a tripod in an easy and useful way. This does that, and it does it quite well. Plenty of options if you have a tripod. I tried it out with the old standard Joby GorillaPod, and it worked great.

It also contains a cold-shoe mount, which I didn’t use, but this would surely be useful for any pro photographer who needs it. And it comes with a small microphone that plugs into the audio jack that juts out to capture audio from the front of the device. While this is a neat idea, it’s clearly geared toward filming video, which isn’t something I’m focused on. I’m all about photos. If you’re into video, you may want to check out some of the video-friendly accessories they offer.

All in all, the mCAMLITE is appealing if you’ve ever wished your iPhone could sometimes feel like a dSLR. It also probably would work for you if you intend to be out hiking in the wilds and want to just toss your iPhone in a bag and not worry about it getting squashed. While it’s sort of geared toward more professional photo takers, I bet it would be a good gift for an amateur photographer or outdoors-y photo taker who likes the idea of a very durable case and multiple tripod options.

Want to win this mCAMLITE? Enter our Halloweeks contest by Sunday at midnight for your chance. Entering is as easy as tagging your photo #halloweeks on popular social-media sites. Check out our contest site for all the info.

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— Eric Suesz, Pixlr community manager

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One More Day to Enter Snap, Style & Share Contest

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Tomorrow is the last day to enter the Snap, Style & Share contest. It’s been going on for many weeks, but you’ve still got a tiny window left to enter.

The contest is open to just about anyone between the ages of 13 and 24. We’re giving away cool prizes like an iPad, an iPad mini, and an Olloclip iPhone lens system. But we’re also exhibiting the winners in the Autodesk Gallery in San Francisco.

Want to participate? Just take a photo of something that shows what you think is stellar design and improve it using Pixlr Express. Easy! Entries are judged by a panel of judges, so the emphasis is on quality and not just popularity. 

That said, you can also vote for your favorites — no matter your age or whether or not you enter. Just hop on the Snap, Style & Share contest site and pick your faves.

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Follow Worthy: Sonel

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Our Pixlr on Flickr group is one of our favorite places to view Pixlr-made art, and we love profiling some of the artists who share their work with us. A few weeks back, we profiled k8rry. This time around we wanted to alert you to another skilled sharer, Sonel. A homemaker from Hartbeespoortdam, South Africa, she’s a wife and mother, animal and nature lover who enjoys swimming, blogging, digital scrapbooking, photography, digital art and graphic design, computer games, good movies, singing, reading, and most of all being at home with her family. Phew. She’s got a lot of hobbies, not the least among them taking some beautiful photos. We wanted to find out a bit more about her and her gorgeous photos, many of which she works up in Pixlr Express….

Pixlr: Have you always taken photos, or did something at some point spark the photography bug in you?

Sonel: I’m just an amateur and have always loved to take photos of nature and animals. A year ago my husband bought me a new DSLR camera, and I had something new to learn and experiment with. One day my dream of having a Canon EOS 7D with telephoto lens will come true. Maybe then I will be able to call myself a photographer.

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Pixlr: Where are you located in this wide world?

Sonel: I live with my hubby, two sons, my Peketese, Simba, and Tweety, the African Grey in Schoemansville, Hartbeespoort Dam, South Africa. What I love about this place is the clean air, the mountains, and my most favourite, the dam.

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Pixlr: Sometmes you seem to focus on adding inspirational quotes to photos. And you’re pretty good at it. Why inspirational quotes? Are they all photos you take or are some photos you find?

Sonel: Thank you for the lovely compliment. All the photos are my own. I love quotes so much because I’m not really good with words. I know what I want to say but can’t always express it. Inspirational quotes also inspire me and make me think about the things in life I’m grateful for. I sometimes forget I have a lot to be grateful for; through photography and inspirational quotes I can express myself and feel good.

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Pixlr: What kind of things inspire you? Besides the inspirational quote photos, are there themes or subjects that people might notice about your photos?

Sonel: Nature, animals, my family, and music always inspire me. I think the one thing that people will notice about my photos is that I truly love nature, and I am crazy about animals. And I love to be creative with my photos.

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Pixlr: What kind of equipment do you use to take photos? Camera, smartphone, apps, etc.

Sonel: My camera is a FujiFilm FinePix S2960. The photos of my camera itself are taken with my Nokia cellphone, but I prefer to use my camera to take photos.

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Pixlr: Is incorporating effects into your photos important?

Sonel: I’m the kind of person who gets bored very easily. Most of the time I use effects on my photos, whether it’s Pixlr or Lightroom or even Adobe Photoshop actions. I don’t want to present boring photos. For example, I am currently running a photo challenge on WordPress about split-toning. When doing that I challenge myself and my readers and blogger friends and show them new ways of being creative with their photography.

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Pixlr: That’s great. Split toning is something included in some photo editing apps, and Pixlr Express uses that type of process with certain effects. It colors shadows for effect.

Sonel: Yes. With this challenge I showed them that they can do the same with Pixlr that I am doing in Lightroom. Most of them can’t afford most of the professional programs and would love to do the same. With the wonderful Pixlr apps they can.

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Pixlr: Is there anything you’d like to see in our apps that aren’t there yet? What’s your feature requests?

Sonel: More effects, borders, and overlays would be awesome. One can never have enough of them.

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Pixlr:Where’s the best place to view your photos online?

Sonel: The best place would be my Wordpress site and then there’s Flicker where I belong to the Pixlr on Flickr group.

In addition to her great quotation photos, Sonel takes some stunning photos of nature — particularly flowers — that are not to be missed. Check out her Flickr page and dig back for some great shots. 

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Week 3 Halloweeks Winners: Kelsey Walser & James Coltham

We have two winners this week in the Pixlr Halloweeks Photo Challenge!

Thank you to Kelsey Walser for sharing her entry on Twitter. We loved her pumpkin pic. Great collection of what look like ceramic decorative pumpkins, which fit our theme quite well. She gets the Olloclip 3-IN-ONE lens system, which we are popping in the mail and sending to her in Dallas. Have a great Halloween, Kelsey!

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Our second prize for Week 3 goes to James Coltham from Edinburgh, Scotland. We think this homemade costume of what looks like Jack from The Nightmare Before Christmas is special to begin with, and we enjoyed the subtle Pixlr Express effects he added. Great photo, James! We’re sending you a gift certificate for a custom CanvasPop print. Make something great with it!

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There are nearly 5 full weeks in October, so we’ve still got 2 more to go! Which means we still have more prizes to give out. If you haven’t entered yet, get started with the Week 4 theme.

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Week 4 Halloweeks Contest Theme: "Halloween Faces"

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Have you entered our Halloweeks Photo Contest? We’re giving away a Grand Prize — the Sony QX10 — at the end of the month, but each week we give out prizes that follow a theme we set for the week. This week’s theme is “Halloween Faces.” It can be creepy or cute, scary or scare-free — anything that works as a Halloween face, whether it’s a mask, a costume, or just a pumpkin with a ridiculously creative carved expression.

We’ll post the winners of Week 3 tomorrow, but we wanted to get you started on Week 4 with the theme for the week. Entering is super easy. Tag your photos #halloweeks on Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, Instagram, or Tumblr. Read all about it on our Halloweeks.com contest site.

Prizes for Week 4: mCAMLITE and CanvasPop custom canvas

This week we’ll be giving away two prizes. First, an mCAMLITE iPhone system. This unique aluminum-body case comes with special lenses and plenty of camera mount options for you to take some serious photos with your iPhone. The second prize is a custom canvas from CanvasPop, which will let you turn a photo of your choice into a work of art to hang on your wall. Both of these are generously provided by our sponsors, and we can’t wait to give them out. 

New Halloween Overlays, Stickers, Borders in Pixlr Express!

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We know there are Pixlr Express users out there who love seasonal stickers and effects. A lot. A whole lot! If you’re one of those people, you’ll be happy to know that this year’s Halloween overlays, stickers, and borders are ready to go. Fire up Pixlr Express for the web or your Android or iOS device and start laying down the Halloween cheer — and fear.

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This special seasonal pack will be around until November 8th, and we’ve included some info in there if you are interested in entering our Halloweeks contest. We welcome all Halloween photos, including ones that use these stickers! 

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A Few Halloweeks Prizes: Three Custom Canvases from CanvasPop

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Our Halloweeks contest rolls on through the month of October like a pumpkin kicked off the front porch by a pimply faced teen. Actually, if you can capture that exact image in a photo and work it up in Pixlr Express you’re probably a shoe-in for a prize.

But what kind of prize, you ask? Lots of different ones — and new prizes each week. Today, I want to encourage you to enter the contest to try and win what I think is one of the best prizes: custom canvases from CanvasPop

In preparation for the Halloweeks contest, I sought out CanvasPop to see if they wanted to help us celebrate Halloween with the Pixlr community. They were happy to join in and generously gave us three gift certificates for 24”x36” custom canvases to give out to some of the best photos submitted by the Pixlr community. Each prize is a $179 gift certificate that you can use to make any kind of printed canvas you want with the picture of your choice. (Or pictures plural if you prefer a collage treatment.)

I’ve purchased a number of canvases from services like CanvasPop, usually as birthday or holiday gifts for friends and family. I love the idea of taking something you made yourself and putting it on canvas. Using a service like this lets you put all your energy into the creativity of making — with none of the headaches that come with printing and stretching canvas on your own. (Don’t even get me started on how difficult framing is if you don’t have experience doing it; it’s harder than it looks.)

When CanvasPop donated these prizes for our Halloweeks contest, they offered to send me an example of what our community members would be winning. I sent them a photo of one of the Instructables Artists-in-Residence that I worked up with all kinds of subtle effects in Pixlr Express. (I created this image for a tutorial on this blog a few months back.) The end result is quite good, especially considering how many overlays and effects I added with Pixlr Express:

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This is the size canvas we’re giving away in the contest, and it’s a much better quality canvas print than other services I’ve tried. In fact, I have a canvas print (printed from the exact same image file) that I ordered from a competing service a few months back. The quality of these kinds of services varies wildly, but it’s embarrassing to see just how poor quality the shall-remain-nameless’s print looks side-by-side with the CanvasPop version: 

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All of which is to say that if you’re ever thinking of using a service like this, I would encourage you to check out CanvasPop. They have a customer-friendly website that’s easy to navigate, and the quality of their prints are the best I’ve encountered so far. And the prices are surprisingly competitive. They even included a nice card with my shipment that has a big fat discount on my next print.

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If you’ve ever wondered what your own photos would look like as hang-able wall art, enter our Halloweeks Photo Contest and get in the running to win one of these custom canvases. We’re giving one away this week and another next week. And we have all kinds of other prizes for you to win. It’s as easy as tagging a photo #halloweeks on the most popular social sites. Read all about it on our contest site.

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— Eric Suesz, Pixlr community manager

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Snap, Style & Share Contest Enters Final Week

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It’s the seven-day warning for our Snap, Style & Share contest. Our contest for students (or anyone, really) between the ages of 13 and 24 has been building up steam for weeks, but we’re getting close to the finish line. The last day to enter is next Friday, October 25th.

Not only is it NOT too late to enter, it’s worth noting that winners aren’t simply chosen on the basis of favorites or votes from the community. This contest has multiple age categories and multiple winners — and the winners are chosen by a panel of judges. So don’t think you are too late to be in the running. It’s really all about the quality of your entry.

Entering is easy. Just take a photo of something you think embodies great design. Could be something in nature, a beautiful machine, the human form, an abstract close-up — anything you think exhibits compelling design. Then, edit and improve your photo using Pixlr Express. Submit your before and after photo to our contest site, and you’re entered to win great prizes like an iPad, an iPad mini, and an Olloclip iPhone lens system. We’ll also be exhibiting winners in the Autodesk Gallery in San Francisco so your work will not only be a prize winner — it will be seen by the thousands of people who visit the gallery every year.

Ready to enter? Get your design hat on, take some photos, and enter the Snap, Style & Share contest.

Pro tip: Tweet at us @pixlr with a link to your entry. We’ll try to retweet it and get you some added visibility. We want to see you win!

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Make It with Pixlr: A Book for Guitar Makers

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People make all kinds of things with Pixlr, and we stumbled on a new one this week: a book for guitar makers.

The author of the book, Brian Forbes, is a seasoned guitar maker who has put all his knowledge into Acoustic Guitar Making: How to make Tools, Templates, and Jigs. What caught our eye was his recommendation in the book that people use Pixlr Editor as a free tool for creating a custom soundhole label to add a finishing touch to a handmade guitar.

The soundhole label is the certificate pasted inside the body of a guitar that tells you who made it, where it was created, and when. And sometimes more. It’s both the birth certificate and certificate of authenticity for an instrument. Most of them are simple labels — black and white for the most part — but some have eye-catching illustrations and lustrous old patinas that seem to only get prettier with age.

We don’t have any guitar-making skills, but just for fun we made a guitar soundhole template (.pxd file) for our imaginary guitar-marking shop here at Pier 9, Flotsam & Jetsom. 

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Then, we gave it an old patina using Pixlr Express. Why not!

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What are you making that’s different with Pixlr? Point us to your creations on Twitter @pixlr. We’d love to spotlight how you use our apps.

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Week 3 Theme for Halloweeks Photo Challenge: "Halloween Decor"

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Did you know we’re running a big contest throughout the month of October? It’s our Halloweeks Photo Challenge

Every photo you enter in the Halloweeks contest gets you in the running for the Grand Prize of the Sony QX10, but each week we give out one or two prizes that follow the theme of the week. This week’s theme is “Halloween Decor” — photos of creative pumpkins, big bowls of candy, orange-and-black streamers, or a half-buried skeleton in the lawn. Anything that sets the mood for Halloween. It can be creepy, it can be scary, or it can just be a beautiful representation of Halloween seen through the lens of the smaller, more incidental stuff you see at this time of the year. Not sure what to photograph? Just run with a pumpkin pic and show us a really awesome pumpkin, for gourd’s sake.

This past week, we gave out two really great prizes. This week, we’re giving out two more. The person who shares the best photo based on our theme will get an Olloclip 3-IN-ONE lens system for the iPhone. It has a macro, fish-eye, and wide-angle lens that you can use to take some pretty interesting photos.

The second prize is for creativity with Pixlr — show us what you can do with Pixlr apps to enhance your Halloween photos. This prize will get a very special 24” x 36” custom canvas from our friends at CanvasPop. It’s a $179 value, and it’s a wonderful way to take a photo you love (or a bunch in a collage) and print it on a high-quality canvas. We’ve tried them out ourselves, and we’re incredibly impressed by the quality of their canvases. We’re thrilled to be offering this special creativity prize, and we’re looking forward to seeing what you can do.

Enter as many times as you like

Simply share your photos with the hashtag #halloweeks. We’ll be scouring the Internet looking for entries with this hashtag on these platforms: Twitter, Flickr, Instagram, Facebook, Tumblr. Watch halloweeks.com to see if your entry has been chosen as a finalist. If your photo appears there, you’re in the running for a prize. Need more info? Go check it out!

Even better, if you’re not chosen as a winner this week, you’re still eligible for the grand prize: the Sony QX10.

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