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Topaz Simplify – plugin review update V4.1

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Topaz Simplify – review update V4.1

An update to the Topaz Plugin – Simplify


Topaz Simplify is a deceptively simple tool for creating effects such as watercolors, oil paintings, cartoons, charcoal drawings and sketches from photos.

This review update looks at changes in V4.1 of the plugin, which still combines Simplify’s analysis of edges, detail, large image features and the underlaying image to produce stylised versions of images, but has a much more up to date feel and smoothness of operation.

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cantina simplify 4.1

An update to the Topaz Plugin – Simplify

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I recently wrote up a detailed review of the Simplify plugin, which looks at its main functionality, and how you can use it to create a wide range of artistic effects, based on the content of your original image.

The plugin analyses different aspects of the image to let you produce new versions of photos.

In February 2014, there a few updates to the look and feel of the plugin, which I’ll briefly outline here.

The software has a lot of ‘help’ resources, and Topaz themselves regularly update their web site with tutorials and examples.

simplify v4.1.1

The interface looks more refined and consistent, but all the earlier features are still here.

The interface elements are of a lot cleaner design which gives the software a more ‘pro’ feel.

updated interface

updated interface

The left hand panel shows all the available conversion presets (a little green dot next to an option shows that a preview has been built). You can also search by preset name and arrange your own favourites/saved settings.

There is now a ‘grid view’ option (the little grid icon).

new interface options

This displays a set of sample conversions

sample image conversions

sample image conversions

The image processing is the same as the earlier version, so do remember to apply the filter to a duplicate layer, if you’re planning on doing any masking.

A quick conversion of a photo of some swans (an example from a recent lens test on my 100D)

Swans on the Canal in Leicester

Swans on the Canal in Leicester


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