The editing tools built into Apple Photos are handy but limited, which is why third-party extensions are so useful. And now Pixelmator Pro 1.4 brings all the power of its regular standalone desktop version to its Photos extension. This means you get Pixelmator’s powerful image effects, adjustments, text, shape, layers and masking tools, all from within Apple Photos.
Apple Photos extensions are really useful for tasks and effects you can’t achieve in Photos itself. They work a little like plug-ins in Photoshop and rely on Mac-friendly photo editing apps installing extensions alongside the main program itself.
Usually, these extensions offer only a small subset of the full program’s tools, and that used to be true of Pixelmator. Now, though, the Pixelmator 1.4 ‘Hummingbird’ update brings all the features of the main Pixelmator app to the Photos Extension. You can even carry out complex perspective adjustments to correct converging verticals in architectural shots, for example.
Pixelmator is a Mac-only program that’s built for speed and clarity. It’s quite unlike any other photo editor to use, but once you known your way around it’s very efficient. Actually, to call it a photo editor doesn’t quite do it justice. Pixelmator includes text and vector shape tools and is equally effective at illustrations, posters and other mixed graphics.
What else is new in Pixelmator 1.4
The big upgrade to the Photos extension isn’t the only thing that’s new in Pixelmator 1.4. It comes with a new and redesigned Zoom tool and navigator that makes it easier to pan and zoom around images, and new Crop tool options which include the ability to crop to specific pixel sizes and new crop presets. It’s now possible to drag and drop layered files directly on to existing images, new image size templates for different devices, and general performance improvements.
The Pixelmator 1.4 update is free to existing Pixelmator users. Alternatively, you can buy Pixelmator 1.4 from the App Store for $39.99. If you want to try it out before you make a decision, you can download a 30-day free trial from the Pixelmator website.