Corel is likely to be showing Corel Painter Essentials 3, which it announced yesterday, at MacExpo 2005.

Designed for home users, the application is based on Corel Painter IX. It includes a multitude of tools to help users begin working with digital art and to create paintings from their image libraries through an easy-to-comprehend user interface. It costs £59 (excluding VAT) and is available directly from Corel.

The application supports iPhoto - users can set their iPhoto preferences to designate Corel Painter Essentials 3 as their photo-editing software. Double-clicking an iPhoto image will open the image for editing in Corel Painter Essentials 3 and saved changes are instantly updated in iPhoto.

Art in a trice

Features include dynamic painting palettes that automatically paint photos, and training resources.

The application's Photo Painting Palettes work together to help users create a hand-painted works of art from digital photos. The software automatically applies individual hand-painted strokes.

The new Quick Clone feature starts the process of turning a photo into a painting with a single mouse click. The application also offers Artists' Oils, which behave like traditional oil paint and also Digital Watercolor, which produces life-like watercolour effects that react with the canvas texture.

The Rubber Stamp tool lets users set a source and destination reference point, enabling them to clone within an image file or between different areas of separate image files.

Corel Painter Essentials 3 includes ten training videos created by Users can also sign up to download ten more free training videos.