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Review: Recolored

If you visit my site you will see I have added a new 2d image to the portfolio. It's a photograph of my grand parents, mother, and uncles in the traditional dutch costume. The picture was taken just before they moved to the USA from Holland. At the time the photographer only offered the prints in black and white. The picture endured several decades until one day my grand father asked if I could colorize it. I didn't hesitate to help since I knew how to colorize a photo using Paint Shop Pro or PhotoShop and proceeded to work. It turned out to be taking a lot of time to complete because of so many details in the clothing and background. Then while reading the digg articles I noticed that someone had created a better way to colorize photos. I had to check it out for myself. The examples posted by the application's author were great so I downloaded a demo and tried it out for myself.

The application was easy to install and has a small file size. Once I opened it the interface was similar to windows paint. It has only eight tools, one of them being the colorize command, as well as a color selection pane. It also has preset swatches of color for several common objects and body parts like stone, wood, skin, or hair. The sparse interface and features placed some doubt in my mind at first but as I used it I could see that what was available was very useful and performed better then expected. The demo allowed me to save the work in the Recolored format of RCL, as well as the finished product in several formats including PNG and JPG. I got to work on my Grandparent's photo and found it to be a much quicker process. I simply highlight the area with the the color I wanted and that was it. Since I didn't have to be perfect the picture was done in a couple of days. I printed the colorized photo at the local drugstore photo booth and gave it as a gift for my Grandfathers birthday. Everyone that saw it was very pleased with the outcome, and were amazed at the short amount of time it took me to create.

I do however see some short comings. The first was a lack of a selection tool. While I was colorizing the photo I found out that the "strokes" of color can be copied and pasted to a different photo. This is best used when colorizing a smaller picture maybe 25 % the size of the original to reduce the time in colorizing. Once you find the colors you like you can copy the strokes and paste it to a lager picture and colorize it. It was very useful and a further time saver for me. I did wish however that I could pick and choose the strokes I wanted to use in the final, larger photo. Something in the way of vector lines or layers would have been great too. It would give a person the ability to have several versions all in one file. One tool I was frequently wishing for though was a colorize area tool. something that was show a colorized version of only the area you selected. It would have saved time and allowed me to see several versions of color more effectively. While it did have some short comings, I was still impressed. I would recommend this to the home or semi-professional user. Someone who would actual colorize dozens of pictures a month. With a simple group of tools it does a great job of colorizing. Recolored


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