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Sep 18, 2022 14:43:50   #
mrgarci Loc: Albuquerque, NM
 
I’m interested in changing out my creative photo processing tools and would like to know what other photographers use for their creative software and what they recommend. I’ve been using Topaz Labs Studio 2 as my go-to creative processing software. I’ve known for quite a while that Topaz Labs is not providing further support or development for Studio 2, though they continue to sell it as a current product. At some point, soon they say, it will become legacy software. Their recent offering of Photo AI has emphasized to me that I should find an alternative to Studio 2 sooner rather than later, since Topaz Labs isn’t even bothering to include Photo AI as a plugin for their own Studio 2 application, though it can be used as a plugin in third-party software. So, I appreciate learning about other’s experiences with creative photo tools and any recommended alternatives to Studio 2. Thanks in advance!

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Sep 18, 2022 15:40:09   #
DWU2 Loc: Phoenix Arizona area
 
I'm not sure what kind of creative photo tools you're seeking - there's a number of types within this genre. However, two that I like are the NIK Collection, which includes the incomparable Silver Efex (b&w), Color Efex, Analog Efex, HDR Efex, and several others. Another product I like is Dynamic Auto Painter Pro, which produces painterly effects in the manner of many artists and styles, so you get styles such as Monet, realism, Van Gogh, Raphaelites, impressionist, acrylic, watercolor, azo, tempera, Cezanne, chalk, John Singer Sargent, felt tip, carving, LeRoy Neiman, pastels, pencil, and many others. It's a lot of fun.

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Sep 18, 2022 15:50:14   #
mrgarci Loc: Albuquerque, NM
 
DWU2 wrote:
I'm not sure what kind of creative photo tools you're seeking - there's a number of types within this genre. However, two that I like are the NIK Collection, which includes the incomparable Silver Efex (b&w), Color Efex, Analog Efex, HDR Efex, and several others. Another product I like is Dynamic Auto Painter Pro, which produces painterly effects in the manner of many artists and styles, so you get styles such as Monet, realism, Van Gogh, Raphaelites, impressionist, acrylic, watercolor, azo, tempera, Cezanne, chalk, John Singer Sargent, felt tip, carving, LeRoy Neiman, pastels, pencil, and many others. It's a lot of fun.
I'm not sure what kind of creative photo tools you... (show quote)


Thanks! Studio 2 has Impression which sounds a lot like Dynamic Auto Painter Pro, which I had never heard of, so I'll check it out.

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Sep 18, 2022 20:28:30   #
bsprague Loc: Lacey, WA, USA
 
Somebody is going to say it, so it might as well be me!

Consider spending $10 a month for the Adobe Photographer's plan.

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Sep 18, 2022 20:58:20   #
JD750 Loc: SoCal
 
mrgarci wrote:
I’m interested in changing out my creative photo processing tools and would like to know what other photographers use for their creative software and what they recommend. I’ve been using Topaz Labs Studio 2 as my go-to creative processing software. I’ve known for quite a while that Topaz Labs is not providing further support or development for Studio 2, though they continue to sell it as a current product. At some point, soon they say, it will become legacy software. Their recent offering of Photo AI has emphasized to me that I should find an alternative to Studio 2 sooner rather than later, since Topaz Labs isn’t even bothering to include Photo AI as a plugin for their own Studio 2 application, though it can be used as a plugin in third-party software. So, I appreciate learning about other’s experiences with creative photo tools and any recommended alternatives to Studio 2. Thanks in advance!
I’m interested in changing out my creative photo p... (show quote)

My experiences may or may not be relevant to your needs.

What is is about Photo AI that makes you want to "find an alternative to Studio 2 sooner rather than later"? What are you looking for in a "creative software" tool that is not included in Photo AI? What are your "must have's" in an editing tool / software? What computer are you using?

Answering the above will help UHHers suggest softwares for you.

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Sep 18, 2022 21:07:17   #
dsnoke Loc: North Georgia, USA
 
Consider either Photoshop, Affinity Photo, or the GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program). These are all full graphic design tools, not just photo processing tools. So you can, with varying amounts of effort, create whatever effect(s) you choose. I use Affinity Photo. One example from that program is the Voronoi noise filter. With that it is simple to make a photo look like a stained glass window. Lightroom and other photo processing tools don't offer that.

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Sep 18, 2022 21:28:32   #
DirtFarmer Loc: Way too close to New York City
 
mrgarci wrote:
I’m interested in changing out my creative photo processing tools and would like to know what other photographers use for their creative software and what they recommend…


I use Adobe LrC/PS. LrC manages my photopile and does basic editing and PS does advanced editing and graphic design. They both allow plugins that enable use of other software brands and the price is reasonable even for amateurs who derive no income from their photography.

If you’re a professional, the price is irrelevant because it will be passed along to the customer.

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Sep 18, 2022 23:53:58   #
mrgarci Loc: Albuquerque, NM
 
JD750 wrote:
My experiences may or may not be relevant to your needs.

What is is about Photo AI that makes you want to "find an alternative to Studio 2 sooner rather than later"? What are you looking for in a "creative software" tool that is not included in Photo AI? What are your "must have's" in an editing tool / software? What computer are you using?

Answering the above will help UHHers suggest softwares for you.


In context, I would rather be proactive rather than reactive for when Studio 2 ceases to work because of new operating systems, migration to new computers, etc. and isn't supported any more. I've already run into it with the original Studio software. There isn't anything that isn't included in Photo AI that is the issue, the issue is that Topaz Labs isn't willing to support Studio 2 as evidenced by not including Photo AI as a plugin as with their other AI software. My computer is a Windows 10 desktop with Intel(R) Core(TM) i9-9900K CPU @ 3.60GHz with 32 GB memory and an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 graphics card. My must haves for photo editing are covered with Corel PaintShop Pro, it's more a matter of what I'm used to with all the creative tools and provided/custom presets/effects that are included with Studio 2 and how to replace them with one or more alternatives. I was hoping that there are other UHHers that have migrated from Studio 2 to other similar software.

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Sep 19, 2022 06:10:28   #
Capn_Dave
 
mrgarci wrote:
In context, I would rather be proactive rather than reactive for when Studio 2 ceases to work because of new operating systems, migration to new computers, etc. and isn't supported any more. I've already run into it with the original Studio software. There isn't anything that isn't included in Photo AI that is the issue, the issue is that Topaz Labs isn't willing to support Studio 2 as evidenced by not including Photo AI as a plugin as with their other AI software. My computer is a Windows 10 desktop with Intel(R) Core(TM) i9-9900K CPU @ 3.60GHz with 32 GB memory and an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 graphics card. My must haves for photo editing are covered with Corel PaintShop Pro, it's more a matter of what I'm used to with all the creative tools and provided/custom presets/effects that are included with Studio 2 and how to replace them with one or more alternatives. I was hoping that there are other UHHers that have migrated from Studio 2 to other similar software.
In context, I would rather be proactive rather tha... (show quote)


You are aware Topaz Photo AI is a stand alone program also? You can select a photo and chose edit in, then select Poto AI

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Sep 19, 2022 06:15:48   #
dpullum Loc: Tampa Florida
 
My personal feeling, mrgarci, is wait for things to shake out during the next year... presently, every graphics program is in a big flux mode and during the next year will change a great deal; be patient.

I agree with edit program habit as expressed by mrgarci ... PSPro Ultra has introduced more AI in 2022 so I upgraded. PSPro 2023 does not tempt me. For those who do not have PSPro 2022 the intro price is reasonable and it indeed is a powerful program. Price for standard PSPro 2022 is $40:
https://www.lenovo.com/us/en/accessories-and-software/

Presently I use the components of Photo AI as plugin and will wait to renew my $99 Update Topaz policy; things are changing rapidly. Soon we will need a Tesla Brain Nuro-Implant to help us with or AI.

PS: Careful what you say... If you say "My boss is a real Ass." one of the new verbal-to-photo AI programs will create a photo of your comment and post it on the company internet.

For those who like the name Adobe, PSElements augmented by Elements Plus [$12] is a powerful edit program.

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Sep 19, 2022 07:06:03   #
amkras Loc: NY
 
A very inexpensive but cool set of creative filters is Anthropic's Smart Photo Editor. And they offer a free trial.

It's a shame that Topaz has abandoned Studio 2. Despite DXO's Nik and Luminar's new Neo which both offer support and updates, Studio 2 is still my first choice in most instances.

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Sep 19, 2022 07:27:17   #
traderjohn Loc: New York City
 
bsprague wrote:
Somebody is going to say it, so it might as well be me!

Consider spending $10 a month for the Adobe Photographer's plan.



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Sep 19, 2022 07:39:48   #
ronichas Loc: Long Island
 
I love Topaz Simplify. I use it often but I do lower the level. I have used BuzSim, and the variations of it.
Here are 2 samples one with BuzSim and one with the BuzSim Black and White.





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Sep 19, 2022 08:39:18   #
rmalarz Loc: Tempe, Arizona
 
I use Ps almost exclusively. That is for about 99.9% of my work. The .1% is special cases that clients might want.
--Bob
mrgarci wrote:
I’m interested in changing out my creative photo processing tools and would like to know what other photographers use for their creative software and what they recommend. I’ve been using Topaz Labs Studio 2 as my go-to creative processing software. I’ve known for quite a while that Topaz Labs is not providing further support or development for Studio 2, though they continue to sell it as a current product. At some point, soon they say, it will become legacy software. Their recent offering of Photo AI has emphasized to me that I should find an alternative to Studio 2 sooner rather than later, since Topaz Labs isn’t even bothering to include Photo AI as a plugin for their own Studio 2 application, though it can be used as a plugin in third-party software. So, I appreciate learning about other’s experiences with creative photo tools and any recommended alternatives to Studio 2. Thanks in advance!
I’m interested in changing out my creative photo p... (show quote)

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Sep 19, 2022 09:02:25   #
Lucian Loc: From Wales, living in Ohio
 
Take a look at On1 RAW 2022, you might like that as well.

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