Photo Filters and a brief review of Aviary

Thanks to all of my followers! 🙂

Lately, I’ve been working on backing up a lot of my photos on Flickr.  While on the site, I’ve been checking out the filters in the built-in photo editing program there called Aviary.  I am a huge filter fan (which you can tell if you take a look at my instagram!) so I was excited to check them out.

Aviary has several easy to use filters (one thing that is glaringly absent is a vignette option, but I’ve read that it’s coming soon).

They have the basic tools that you would expect, (brightness/contrast/sharpness, etc.), a few generic frames, as well as higher end tools to adjust focus (for that tilt-shift look), and GREAT fonts for watermarking.  The crop tool is very nice to use, and it also provides different aspect ratios to choose from.  The blemish tool and the red eye removal tool both seemed to work well.  Overall, if you are into photography and browser based photo editing, I would definitely check it out.  I love it just for watermarking my photographs (although the font tool could use a little bit of work, the slightest change in font size sends the text askew).

I know there are still some naysayers who think instagram (and similar) filters are overdone, cheesy, blah blah blah and people have said the same about Photoshop.  To them I say: ease of use does not equal ability.  Just because filters are easy to use doesn’t mean people will use them well.  But it certainly doesn’t mean that filters can’t be used in a beautiful and tasteful manner to accentuate a photograph.

I do think it is bad to be overly dependent on filters and that it is extremely important to know how to use other tools in your digital darkroom.  Hell, I was trained in the real darkroom, and since I have spent hours trying to perfect a print that just wouldn’t come out right, (wasting precious sheets of expensive photographic paper) I very much appreciate the ease of using these tools 🙂

[::Insert long and rambling story about the old days of photography and how lucky kids are these days to have these newfangled inventions::]

(TL; DR – It’s not the weapon, it’s how you wield it.)

So here is a photo where I did some post-processing in Aviary (as well as the watermark!)

christine1

*Disclaimer – I did use some of these filters on top of already retouching them in Adobe Suite.  I often use multiple filters from multiple programs to get the look I want.

If you have any browser based photo editing software you’d like to share your opinions on, please leave a comment 🙂

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