I’ve reviewed ReMask a couple times before, and have spoken at length about how useful I find it. If you use any layer based software, like Photoshop, or Affinity, this is a remarkable piece of software capable of saving hours upon hours. ReMask5 is available as a free upgrade to anyone who owns an earlier version, or on sale for new folk at 30% off, $49.99 (normally $69.99) via Topaz Labs website HERE
While ReMask has always functioned as a plugin for Photoshop, version 5 now operates as a standalone too! This is great news for those of us who may be starting to work Adobe software out of our workflow as you can now select and mask a subject in an image within the program itself, and open that up in any layer based program. Good news for the photography community at large as options are always good. I still use PS CS6, but have started to work with Affinity Photo in anticipation of CS6 becoming unsupported at some point down the line. Knowing that I’ll be able to continue to use ReMask if and when that happens has made me very happy.
C’mon in for a look at how easy it is to use ReMask5!
Here’s a snapshot of LBWHF this morning before his first day of school (yeah a weird midweek start). Nothing special, and honestly, rather boring. This is how we will remember his very first day of kindergarten, that is unless… we’d rather remember it, out on the prairie:
Or perhaps we can mess with him later in life and tell him he started school in Amsterdam…
While not the best examples of what this software is capable of, it is an example of how you can have fun with a rather pedestrian snapshot, and a few extra minutes of spare time. This took me all of 2 minutes to mask him, and plop him down by dragging the masked layer onto two new background images.
As a better illustration perhaps, here are some example shots from last year that I did, after Topaz put together a tutorial on masking hair. This is certainly one of the tasks within Photoshop that has frustrated and even stumped many of us. Where I used to outline the entirety of the hair, taking a few minutes to make sure I’d done it well (which is a mere fraction of what it would take to separate via frequency layers, or select in PS already) Topaz showed us how well the selection algorithms work in the software with a few simple brush strokes. Note the colors used where blue is essentially neutral, green is what you want to keep, and red is what you want to get rid of. Normally by default, the screen is filled with green when you open your image in ReMask, you paint with blue to determine a border, and fill with red to establish what you want to get rid of keeping what you want to keep, green. Here, they’ve switched it up, we fill the image with blue, and just squiggle green and red seemingly haphazardly… See below:
Where I’d have normally traced the outline of her hair, filled the background with red, and her with green, instead doing this produced a great result.
I was already sold on this plugin before seeing this tutorial, but afterward, I became a ReMask evangelist. Seriously, it was nuts to see this level of success after literally 15 seconds of work. It doesn’t feel fair… The good thing is that even if you aren’t able to get this clean a selection right off the bat, using the brushes to bring back hair, or whatever, or remove bits of the background is quick and easy. I did start with a very congruous background here to be fair, so the software didn’t have too much to try and determine, but still, SERIOUSLY!
Here are a couple other shots where I’ve had fun using ReMask:
I’m not saying that this software is for everyone. If you don’t need to select and mask things in your photographic workflow, then it really doesn’t make sense to buy a selection and masking specific program. Buuuut, if you do ever need to, or want to play with this type of compositing or add this tool to your skill set, give it a try. Trial is totally free, and we have almost a month to decide while ReMask is on sale.
Visit Topaz Labs to download a free trial, or buy ReMask5 on sale through September 18th via Topazlabs.com HERE. Use the code “GetReMask5” to get the $20 discount at checkout. Normally $69.99, ReMask5 is going for $49.99 which if looked at as time saved, might be the best investment I’ve made in my vast software and plugin purchases over all these years.
Clicking on the Topaz link above to get to their website will let them know that you found my insight useful, and is the digital version of “tell them Tyson sent you.” If you do purchase through this link, Topaz gives me a commission, which I use to keep this site going, so full disclosure. If you hate me for whatever reason, but still want to buy this software, you might want to find someone else who has linked to Topaz, and I’ll not feel wrongly done, although I would like to know what I’ve done to piss you off, so drop me a line 😉
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Stay tuned for some new things happening here on the blog very soon, including a giveaway!