If you have a great photo or painting that you want to hang on the wall, it is likely you’ll go shopping for the perfect frame to accentuate the image. It is equally important to find the perfect frame for digital artwork. Users of recent versions of Corel PHOTO-PAINT have hopefully explored the Frame effect supplied. The downside is that it includes only 92 frames and many of them don’t have an obvious use. Over the years I’m going to guess I’ve only used about five of them.
An alternative is Auto FX Photographic Edges plug-in which has thousands of different frames and edges that are neatly categorized as shown in the menu at right. I’m not sure the exact number, but the size of the installer is 3.4 GB because of all of the massive amount of content included.
Users with a preferred image editor that supports Photoshop plug-ins should be able to use Auto FX Photographic Edges Gen1 (I’ll call it PGE going forward) as a plug-in. You can also run it as a standalone application if your preferred image editor doesn’t work or you simply don’t want to use it as a plug-in. I did my testing using the 64-bit version of the plug-in running as a plug-in inside of Corel PHOTO-PAINT X6-64.
Installing Auto FX PGE was very smooth and only took a little time due to the overall size of the files involved. Then it was a matter of opening an image and launching the plug-in from Corel PHOTO-PAINT’s Effects menu (or Photoshop’s Filters menu). The interface for the plug-in and the standalone version are identical with most of the options listed on the left side of the window.
I selected one of the grunge edges that was a good fit for the image being used. Once the edge was selected, there were a number of adjustments I could make to the edge. Playing with the Roughen effects seemed to provide an endless supply of variations to the base frame being used.
In the areas removed by the edge selected, you can choose to fill it with a solid color, a gradient, a texture and more. Want a texture applied to the entire area inside the frame? There are numerous choices for that too!
Edges will simply hide portions of the original image based on the shape selected. An alternative to the edges are the frames as they provide decoration around the image. You can even stack various effects in layers to get even more possibilities.
All of these choices are a huge positive, but I admit it was easy to spend all kinds of time explore all of the possibilities. You’ll see a small sample of my finished photo at left. While there are many possible choices, sometimes it is best to not overdo it. My sample only scratches the surface of what is possible.
Those of you working with a lot of photos or other digital artwork will undoubtedly find many ways to incorporate Auto FX PGE into your workflow. Scrapbookers will love what all the edges can bring to their projects. I encourage all of your to download the free trial and play with Auto FX PGE on your own images. Just remember that the free trial only include a very small sample of the content available in the full version due to the huge size of that content.