June 8, 2011

Reviewing Snapseed, the new iPad app by Nik Software

Snapseed - Processed with only the U-Point technology - Chincoteaque Island

Prologue: Last fall I decided to spend six weeks traveling throughout the east coast on a photographic adventure. One of my goals was to capture exposures with my Nikon camera that would become wonderful HDR images with the help of Nik Software's soon to be released product, HDR Efex Pro. All that changed however during the second week of my adventure when I photographed my first Ah-Ha moment with my iPhone. Since then I have chosen to exclusively photograph with my iPhone and process the images with apps available for it and the iPad (and now Mac). So when Nik Software released the Snapseed app today I was excited to see what they had developed.

Review: Overall I am really enjoying the concept/feel of the interface. Anytime I am sliding my finger across the glass of the iPad I feel more connected to the image. Snapseed uses an invisible slider to make adjustments with, therefore you can swipe your finger to the right or the left anywhere on the screen to see the effects process in real time. I really like the concept of invisible sliders because there is nothing blocking the image you are working on at anytime.

Within Snapseed, there are many different effect folders:  Black & White, Vintage Films, Drama, Grunge, Center Focus and Organic Frames. Within the folders there is a wide variety of choices. I spend time 'playing' today and have posted several versions of the same image. These posting were exclusively processed in Snapseed.

Processed with Vintage Films and Organic Frames
Nik Software is known for their U-Point technology and I was very pleased to see that it was included in this app. The options for Brightness, Saturation and Contrast are available. After you place the 'point' on the image (magnified for better placement), you chose how large of an area that you want to effect by enlarging or shrinking the circle. The areas in red will be affected by the changes you choose to make. Several points and therefore adjustments can be added at one time to the image.

One down side to the app is the lack of a preview for the texture options in a flyout type window. When trying to choose which texture I wanted to use, I couldn't tell how many choices were available. So I continued to cycled through them studying the subtle differences instead of how I liked the effect. Hopefully this will be added in the future.

Processed with Black and White, and Organic Frames
In conclusion, there are several features in Snapseed that I will use on a regular basis for blending in my workflow. The 'Organic Frames' are very unique and I am excited to use more of them. I look forward to the updates for this app hoping Nik will include a growing library of effects.

Processed with Drama, Grunger with Texture and Organic Frames

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  1. Love Nik so I downloaded this yesterday but haven't played with it yet. Your frames look like a lot of fun and a chance to express ourselves. I think I'll use Snapseed a lot. Photo transfer between devices will be so much easier when iOS 5 comes out. Can't wait.

  2. Thanks for the review, TL. With the consolidation and growth in Apps the last couple of months I've become very cautious about getting any new ones as whatever I need may soon come to an existing App. I will get Snapseed though.


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