Fotor for Mac review
While there are plenty of apps ploughing the retro furrow they usually aren’t free but that’s where Fotor for Mac, or Fotor Photo Editor, as it is listed on the App Store, is different. It has two distinct halves, one for editing images and one for creating collages. Once you are in one section you need to either cancel the editing/project or save it, in order to go back to the starting point to choose again. The collages offer 1:1, 3:4 or 4:3 aspect ratios and 80 templates to simply drop photos into, or you can create one from scratch. What’s missing here is obviously more common formats that correspond to paper sizes in case you wanted to print them out. The borders, colour and background designs can all be tweaked though. On the freestyle menu it works rather differently. Here a background design is loaded, images are imported on the left and then dropped onto the working area. The images can be rotated and have their border and shadow details adjusted, but not resized and you are stuck with the shape of the background that you started with.
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After adjusting the image and adding an effects filter and border, the final touch is to use the blurring functions in the Tilt-Shift category.
Over on to the photo editor side there are categories for Scenes, Crop, Adjust, Effects, Borders and Tilt-Shift. The Scenes section contains one-click adjustments to enhance the photo, with the names like Night and Landscape, giving you an idea of what they are designed for. If you don’t like those then the image can be adjusted manually with controls for exposure, brightness and contrast and saturation. There are also options for blur/sharpen, white balance and tinting and adding a vignette. These are all slider based and don’t have any masking options so are fairly basic and not suitable for images with significant lighting problems.
Despite ignoring paper sizes in the collage section, they are surprisingly taken care of with the crop tool which has a number of presets related to paper and DVD aspect ratios. There are also some compositional options when cropping as well. However, what everyone is really here for are the effects which are split into five categories, one of which is mono and the last of which adds texture overlays. It’s a pity that there are only 11 of them as this is the advantage over other, similar retro apps. The effect can be reduced with an opacity slider, but disappointingly you can’t stack multiple effects or control them in any other way. That’s a pity because there are some excellent border and edging options and there’s also a tilt-shift function thrown in as well. This can be used subtly to simply fade the focus on the edges of the image. It comes with circular and strip-based focus zones.
When everything is complete the finished image can be saved or uploaded to Facebook, Twitter, Flickr or emailed.
Easy decision here since it’s free and useful. Fotor supports all main image formats including RAW and gives an easy way to make minor image adjustments. Comes with a collage feature and plenty of retro filters, borders and focus options for a quick method of toning and styling images.