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FotoSketcher

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FotoSketcher is a free retouching photo software, which converts digital photos into “real” pictorial works.

No doubt that digital photography has brought great advantages to our life. We can take countless photos without having to worry about the end of the reel, we have a camera built into the mobile phone, we do not need to print the photographs, and we can share a photo instantly on social networks.
In spite of all the benefits the digital photography bring to us, it can never substitute or replace, the charisma of a brush when it paint a scene, place or person. The strokes of the paint, colors of the palette chosen by the author, the configuration of the scene, and the chosen perspective, are many of the features that makes the painting a unique art, appreciated and desired by many.

FotoSketcher brings us the possibility of creating authentic works of art from our digital photos. Thanks to the multitude of available filters, we will be able to convert our digital photo into an oil painting, a pencil drawing or watercolor, among many others.

The program has been designed to be used by all type of users, is so easy to use that everyone can use it, from the small children to the elderly.
The interface is very simple, the original photo is located on the left side, which can be loaded using the menu of “File->Open image”, or drag the photo directly to the program window, or paste it from the Windows clipboard. The right part is reserved for the new image, that will be created applying filters to the original photo.
To convert the photo into a painting, we only need to click on the “Parameters drawing” (represented by a color palette), or you can use the menu “Edit-> Parameters drawing” (F10).
We can choose more than 25 filters (drawing styles). Drawing styles come divided by types:

  • Effects of drawing pencil: in this section we can choose from 6 types of filters. The “Black and White” filter, will get a finish that's really good and gives you the feeling to be in front of an hand-drawn image using a pencil. The filter“Pencil Drawing 4” also get a very good effect created with pens and colors.
    We can change certain parameters of the filters to vary the length of the strokes, varying the intensity of the colors, or change the intensity of the edges.
  • Drawing Effects with pen and ink: here we can choose between two different effects. Both effects recreate the art of draw with pen and ink. The effect achieved is very realistic, and we can modify various parameters to get more clarity/obscurity, more details, or a more simple/complex image.
  • Painting Effects: we will have up to 9 effects to choose. Among them: watercolor, oil, or strokes. These effects manage to recreate very faithful the style of the paintings techniques mentioned above. So with a couple of clicks, we will convert our photo in a painting with watercolors, oil or brush strokes.
  • Stylish Effects: In this section, we can select between 7 different effects. For example, the “Pixelation” effect turn our photo into a painting draw with squares that pretend to be pixels. “Point Color” will convert the image into a paint made with a base of colored points, we can select the maximum and minimum radius of the points, the intensity of the color, the number of points, etc. “Comic 1” and “Comic 2” give an aspect of comic to our photography. Other selectable effects in this section are: “Half tones” and “Emerge”.
  • Various Effects: here we can select “Intensify Colors” that intensifies the colors of the photo, giving more life to photos that are dark and with dark colors. Also we can select the filter “Old Photo”, that transform our photo in a snapshot taken with the cameras of the first decades of the Twentieth century.

When we apply a filter, we have the option of selecting the texture of the canvas where the new image will be “draw”. We can choose up to 10 types of different texture.

The best thing to do is test all the filters until we find those that we like. Next, we must modify the individual parameters of each filter until we get the desired image.

FotoSketcher allows us to make basic modifications on the original photo, in such a way that it will not be necessary to use another external tool to carry out these modifications. We can modify the brightness, contrast, saturation, definition, and rotate or change the size of the image. We can also crop the original image, to apply the filters to the selected area, and add text to the created image.

If we want to apply the same filter to multiple images, we will be able to to use the“batch processing tool” (ctrl+D). Here we will select the photographs that we want to convert, and choose the filter that we are going to apply to all of them. Pressing the “Processing” button, the photographs conversion begin.

It is possible to apply multiple filters to the same photo, in such a way that we will get a unique image. If we like especially a combination of filters, we can create a “Script”, where we can select the order in which those filters and their parameters will be applied. For example, we can create a Script where we first use the “White and Black” effect, and then we apply the “Pixelate” effect. In this way, we will execute the Script on any photography and apply the filters in the programmed order.

The program allows us to save the image in png, jpg, jpeg and bmp formats. We can also print the image directly from the program.

Without a doubt, this program is perfect for all those who want to feel like an artists, without the need of make use of more sophisticated programs such as Photoshop. We must remember that FotoSketcher is free and it works in the latest Windows versions.