Educational articles on framing and matting

Are you interested in the history of picture frame? Or perhaps you need some tips for choosing the perfect frame for your art work? What are the main rules of framing the photo?
We are pleased to inform you that we have started publishing educational articles on framing and matting. Take a look at our Picture Framing Articles page.
Every month we will add articles with interesting facts about framing, as well as sharing tips to mount your artwork. Let us introduce our first article – Why a picture frame?

Why a picture frame?

A frame for a picture is like a beautiful dress for a woman. It serves to emphasize the important details, hide the disadvantages, and create a complete, perfect image. Many private owners and art galleries exhibit their paintings without frames, but this is a huge mistake. An unframed picture looks far less impressive than it could because the painting itself is rarely self-sufficient and lacks a complete form. In most cases the right framing is necessary to complete the image…

10-Year Anniversary sale

We’re celebrating 10 years of operation with an unprecedented 10-day half-price sale of all our Mac application lineup.

The sale runs until October 15, 2016.

Anniversary sale

The applications on sale are:

  • ImageFramer — a professional-grade framing design and visualization software for artists, framers, professional and hobby photographers. Ten years in the making, ImageFramer is the first product that Apparent Software started with. All version upgrades are included in the sale.
  • Cashculator — a personal finance application geared at families and small business. Cashculator focuses on high-level planning and tracking of finances, and on “what-if” scenarios to evaluate possible financial outcomes.
  • Trickster — a menu-bar productivity application to access recently used applications, files and folders. Trickster is designed to save time for people who work with files on their Macs.

The sale prices are:

  • Trickster: $4.95
  • Cashculator: $14.95
  • ImageFramer Lite: $14.95
  • ImageFramer Standard: $19.95
  • ImageFramer Pro: $34.95

Don’t miss this rare opportunity!

Trickster version 2.4.2

We’ve updated Trickster with a new feature and some bug fixes.

Specifically, we’ve added a preference that can disable Finder folders from showing in the “All Files” list. Some users don’t like it that folders appear in the main list when they navigate in Finder. Note, Folders will still appear in filters that are set to show folders.

This new option is selected by default:

Screen Shot 2016 05 25 at 20 08 14

Other changes:

We removed the dialog that would sometimes appear when Trickster detected potential problems with its watched folders (related to Sandboxing). If you don’t know what it means, don’t worry. Some users experienced a stuck Trickster because of that, and it’s not something we’d want you to experience.

We also fixed the sometimes disappearing text after editing text in filters and in Tracking Settings

Thanks to the customers who gave the suggestions and reported the issues.

Lastly, we’ve added a note that “Watch Folders” also includes all the subfolders of these folders. We’ve added this everywhere it made sense, including in the User Manual.

Productivity articles

Not really related to the release, but we’re adding articles sections to our site and one section is about Mac Productivity, where we’ll post some tips related to the topic. Click to read the Mac Productivity articles we have now.

Cashculator 1.3.7 Release

We’ve released an update to Cashculator that fixes some bugs and improves some aspects of usability, especially the state of the application after it restarts.

Update is available both directly from our site and from the Mac App Store. If auto-update through the application doesn’t work, you can download the new version.

If you’re a Twitter user, it’s also a good time to connect to Cashculator’s Twitter account. While it’s kind of new, it might surprise you.

Full release notes:

  • Use default system fonts
  • Fix rare corruption of total categories names
  • Remember and restore active screen between launches
  • Remember and restore Scenarios sidebar state between launches
  • Remember position in grid between launches

Saving time with Trickster and Scanner Pro

Watch the video below to learn how you can easily share scans from your iPhone to your Mac and have them appear automatically in Trickster for further processing. This workflow is something that we often use ourselves and it can save a lot of time.

In this “how-to” video we demonstrate how to watch iCloud Drive folders for specific apps in Trickster, using Scanner Pro by Readdle as an example.

You can use similar approach with other apps on your iPhone that share data through iCloud Drive. Of course you can also do the same when sharing files between your Macs through iCloud Drive.

New Celebration frames in ImageFramer

Celebration FramesWe’ve added about 60 new celebration frame designs. They can be found in “Holiday and Celebrations” Collection, in “Celebration” Set.

They are part of the Standard frames and are available for free to all the customers.

To see the list of all the frames in this set, take a look at our “Celebration Frames” page.

ImageFramer should alert you about the additions in the library when it launches, if you have the options enabled. If not, you can force to check it manually from the ImageFramer menu.

Enjoy the new designs!


Framed cupcakes

Aspect ratio locking in ImageFramer 3.4

Latest ImageFramer update brings time-saving improvements to some workflows and some user-interface changes.

Perhaps the most visible change is that “Watermarks” were renamed to “Overlays”. The origin of the name “watermark” was in the initial intended use for these layers — adding copyright signs or artist names on the framed images. Over time, though, we’ve found that the name was confusing because “watermarks” have a more specific meaning, so we decided that “overlays” is a clearer name for these special layers.

Another addition to the interface is the lock button on the right side of the bottom bar, near the aspect ratio button.

Lock Button

One of the repeating support questions that we receive is people taking an image that is, for example, in a 3:2 aspect ratio (think of a 6″ by 4″ photograph), then adding a frame on the outside and then expecting the framed result to also be in a 3:2 ratio for printing.

Of course, adding an outside frame makes the result more square, closer to 1:1 aspect ratio. The solution to getting output in a specific aspect ratio is to crop the image layer in such a way that the result becomes in the desired ratio. ImageFramer already provided some help with this by displaying the current aspect ratio. But manual cropping is too time-consuming, hard to get exact and needs to be repeated after every change to the frame size, which is annoying.

Luckily, computers are quick at math, if you teach them how. So that’s what we did. We programmed an algorithm for ImageFramer to automatically crop the image to get desired final aspect ratio. The “lock” button enabled this behaviour. When the lock is locked, ImageFramer will apply the minimal crop that will keep the framed result in the target aspect ratio.

But what is this target? That’s where the two-arrows button comes into play.

Aspect ratio drop down

Without a lock, it behaves as previously, as a hint to the aspect ratio value that’s displayed to its right. With the lock, though, it selects the aspect ratio that ImageFramer will keep locked. You can use any of the presets, select the new option “Same as Image” that will keep the output in the same aspect ratio as the input image (before cropping), and the top options, “Automatic”, will lock to the current aspect ratio, which can be handy sometimes.

So ImageFramer will crop the image but by default it will crop to the center of the image. What if you want to change which part of the cropped image to show. With ImageFramer 3.4, cropped images can now be repositioned when dragged with the mouse.

This will automatically adjust the crop parameters for the image layer. This works not only when the lock is enabled but also when you crop manually. But when the lock is enabled, the automatic cropping will keep the visible portion of the image the same, instead of cropping to original center of the image.

Watch this short video to see it in action (full-screen viewing recommended):

Hoarfrost photo with a little ImageFramer touch

This morning’s beautiful hoarfrost needed just a little touchup from ImageFramer to add some more of the frosty mood.

The frame is called Chaos (can be found in Artistic collection, Oval set). It’s a monochrome frame that was colourized to a purplish colour and made half transparent to make it blend better with the rest of the photo.

Speaking of ImageFramer, a new update is in the works with some nice improvements to workflow and some new frames as well. Stay tuned.


Have a warm day, everyone!

Trickster 2.4 improves cloud services support

Trickster 2.4 screenshot

Trickster 2.4 improves support for cloud services including iCloud Drive, Google Docs.

Files in iCloud, Dropbox and Google Drive will now display associated icons in their paths in the file list to make the paths shorter and easier to identify.

We added two icons for filters, one for Google Drive and a generic cloud icon that could be used for iCloud.

We simplified selection of iCloud Drive folder in File Tracking and Filter configurations with a dedicated button that opens the correct location. Note: adding iCloud Drive as instructed only adds the folders that you create and move there manually. For app-specific folders in iCloud, select them and add separately.

Google Drive document changes are now detected after they’re changed on the web, if Google Drive application is running.

We’ve also fixed a number of bugs, including some crashes.

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