Friday, October 24, 2014

Coming Soon: Alien Skin Exposure 7

Abandoned Boles-Aero Trailer - Mojave, California
Post-processed using Alien Skin Exposure 6.
When photographers still commonly used film, the look of a photograph was directly related to one's choice of film. What film one loaded into their camera was a critical decision. Each brand and type of film was unique--each one had its own look.

Digital photography is a much different thing. There are only very minor differences in the look of digital images between each and every brand. No matter the camera, all digital photographs look basically the same. The photographer must, using post-processing software, manipulate the images to give them the look that they want.

Manipulating photographs in software can be a time consuming process. It can be very difficult to nail down a certain look, and it often requires trial-and-error to get it close to what you're looking for. In order to streamline the process, many people resort to a "close enough" philosophy. 

But there is a much quicker, easier and more precise way to get the look that you want: Alien Skin's Exposure software. This software accurately emulates a whole bunch of different films (black & white, color, print, slide, polaroid, and more) and even different processes (cross process, push process, bleach bypass, etc.). In my opinion, Exposure is the best photo editing software on the market. Yes, I mean that: it is the very best.

Alien Skin introduced Exposure 6 this last June, but already they've developed a number of improvements. They just announced that the next version, Exposure 7, will be released in December.

What will the new version have that the current version doesn't?

First, there will be RAW support for most camera makes and models. No more converting to TIFFs before opening in Exposure. You will also have the option to export as TIFFs or JPEGs, and you can even resize if you'd like.

Exposure 7 will have the ability to crop and rotate. This seems like a long overdue no-brainer. There will be an improved user interface for file and folder browsing. "Maximized color fidelity" is another improvement. There will be nine new "films" in the upcoming version (six color and three black-and-white).  They've also added a bunch of new textures.

The best news in all of this is that those who have purchased (or will purchase before December) Exposure 6 will get a free upgrade to Exposure 7. Yes, you heard me correct, free. That's almost unheard of. Try getting that from Photoshop, because you won't.


  1. Just got Exposure 7 but can't use it with Raw DNG files because I used a Pentax K3 to take the photos and it's apparently not compatible! $149 down the drain unless they can fix it

    1. Alien Skin has on their websites which cameras are compatible for RAW processing using Exposure 7. As far as I can tell you have three choices. First, you could use a different software (such as Lightroom or whatever Pentax included with your camera) to convert the images to TIFFs or JPEGs, and then post-process those files with Exposure. Second, you could wait for Exposure 8 to come out (which isn't that far down the road)--you'll get a free upgrade and it's possible that the RAW files from your camera may be compatible. Third, you could ask for you money back. The people at Alien Skin are good and they'll probably give you a refund if you ask. I think the software is great, so I'd go with option one myself (in fact, that's what I did with Exposure 6, which didn't have RAW processing capabilities). Thanks for commenting!