ON1 Labs — An all new Perfect Portrait

Posted on June 23, 2015 by Dan Harlacher - 4 Comments

One of my favorite things about Perfect Portrait is it finds faces and features in faces, like eyes and mouths, automatically. It makes retouching much faster. It reduces the need to create lots of layers and masks and use brushes. You simply click on a face and adjust the amount of retouching you want. However, with anything that is automatic, it’s not perfect all of the time.

For example, think about when you put your camera in Program mode. Most of the time it gets the exposure right, but on tough photos it is off. Finding faces and facial features is the same way. For a deliberate portrait image with flat light and with the subject is facing the camera it works well. In the cases of profile angles, tilted heads, glasses, hard lighting or small, out of focus faces it doesn’t work as well. In these cases, you have to spend more time to adjust the control points. Having to adjust control points in the past could cause a bit of pain.

For the next generation of Perfect Portrait we will add a way for the user to better direct where facial features are so we can do a better job to set the control points for you. Any adjustments to control points will also be much faster. We will also add a way to skip facial features you don’t want to retouch.

When you start to retouch a face you will click on the eyes and the corners of the mouth. If you don’t care about the mouth, you can skip it (as an example). This gives you much faster and better results on tilted and/or small faces. It also gives you control over what features to retouch.

Sometimes You will need to fine-tune control points, but you will have to adjust fewer of them and by smaller amounts. The video below shows a prototype of this new workflow. You can see how it will work and how much faster and more accurate it will be.. If you like it, tell us, if you don’t tell us that too.


Dan Harlacher


ON1 Labs — What Users Want

Posted on June 18, 2015 by Dan Harlacher - 7 Comments

Been watching tech news recently and notice an interesting trend? Both Apple and Google announced new versions of their flagship operating systems. Did you notice what the big new features where in both? – Speed, stability and usability. Whoever thought simply making your apps run faster and easier to use, as opposed to adding in new wiz-bang features, was what users really want. That’s also what our customers tell us. Our top requested feature is “Improved speed” with 89% of users desiring it. Following it closely was “Make it easier to use” at 84%. Armed with this knowledge we’ve set out to improve the speed, stability and usability of Perfect Photo.

Adobe® CC 2015 & ON1 – What You Need to Know

Posted on by Patrick Smith - 17 Comments


Adobe® released a solid update for Creative Cloud and there are great new features included for photographers. Matt posted a short video showing the new features available in Lightroom® and Photoshop®. We noticed some issues with our apps when using them (or trying to use them) with CC 2015. Here is what you need to note as an ON1 user if you updated to CC 2015 or are thinking about it.

  • Installing CC 2015 removes older versions of CC (CC 2014 for example). This makes it appear the ON1 plug-ins were also removed. The plug-ins didn’t get removed, but you will need to go through a few steps to get them to show in CC 2015.
  • For Windows users, if you recently updated to CC 2015, just reinstall your ON1 app and they will locate and install into CC 2015.
  • For Mac users, it’s a little trickier. Reinstalling doesn’t always find the correct locations for the apps to show in CC 2015. Our support team posted the instructions on how to get ON1 apps working as plug-ins for CC 2015 here.
  • If you are having trouble as either a Mac or Windows user, just leave us a comment and we will do our best to make sure we get the ON1 apps working for you. In the meantime, if you own the Premium Edition of any ON1 app, it is also available to run as the standalone version.
  • Update 6.25.15 – We are currently working on a fix to restore access to the ON1 panel in the extensions menu in CC 2015. Until then, to access the ON1 plugs-ins in Photoshop CC 2015 go to the File>Automate menu.

ON1 Labs – The Future of Presets in Effects

Posted on June 12, 2015 by Dan Harlacher - 31 Comments

Perfect Effects is the most powerful and versatile piece of Perfect Photo. Its power and versatility come from being able to stack, blend and mask multiple filters at the same time, like combining layers in Photoshop or Perfect Layers. It’s also way too hard to use.

Think of it this way. How do you know what filters to use and what order to put them in?

In the past, we’ve tried to help by adding presets and training videos to give users a starting point. Over the years the presets library has grown out of control. Today, we include the ON1 presets and favorites, filter presets and also your presets and your favorites… We feel there are so many presets, categories and tabs its usefulness is hidden by its complexity. It’s time for us to stop and reset.

The goal is to take the power and versatility and make it easy (and fun) to use again. We want first-time users to “get it” and still let power users do everything they are used to doing. Here is our concept of how we want to accomplish both: (Keep in mind these are mock-ups, not the actual finished app.)


Photo: © Bliss Studio

The first step is to simplify the whole preset, filter preset, favorite, yours vs. ours morass. In the future there will simply be presets. We will give you a great set to start, and you will have full control over them. Want to delete ones you wouldn’t use? Go ahead. Want to update a preset we created with your adjustments and make it your own? Done. You will be able to rename and move presets to your hearts content.

Another problem is some presets are similar. We want to reduce duplication and put everything into fewer, logical categories based on the photo type or look you want to achieve. (Don’t fear, every preset we’ve ever made will be available on the ON1 website so you will be able to download your favorites if they don’t make the cut.) For each category we will create a handful of subtle starting-points that combine the right filters for the type of photo you are working on, without any fluff. Then, you can fine-tune the settings for your photo.


We have moved the presets and the stack to the right allowing more room to work on your photo. Notice at the top of the presets the category you are exploring is listed and you can easily jump back to the list of categories. The two buttons at the top allow you to toggle between preset mode and the settings mode. When you explore a category we will still show what a preset looks like on your photo. You will still be able to mark your favorites and search too.


The Settings mode is where you see the stack of filters which make up the preset. This changes a lot too. The Filter Stack and Filter Options are combined together. You can still  add, delete, hide, adjust, blend and mask each filter. There are still suggested settings available for each filter as well. New features are the ability to see the name of the preset you have applied and the ability to mask and blend an entire preset; a feature long time users have been asking for.

We feel these changes will make Perfect Effects easy to use for all users. First time users will create great results faster. Occasional users won’t have to watch a video to remember how to use it, and power users will still be able to do everything they did before, with more flexibility and fewer steps.

So what do you think? Leave your suggestions or feedback in the comments.


Dan Harlacher

Senior Product Manager


ON1 Labs — Color Our Future

Posted on April 28, 2015 by Dan Harlacher - 15 Comments

We are hard at work on the next generation of our products. One of our goals is it update and modernize the user interface and user experience. Part of that process is to update the look and feel of common controls like buttons, sliders, etc. We are considering adding an accent color for the first time. The accent color makes it easier to see what is selected and when something is on or off. Below are two accent color options, plus the silver that we currently use. Tell us what you think! Don’t like any of them? Leave a comment below.