Flame Painter Updated for Creating Flame-like Effects

It's good to see that there are still specialized, affordable applications being developed for graphics creation. Case in point is Flame Painter for Mac and Windows, which is dedicated to just one thing: creating or enhancing images with flame-like effects. These effects are generated with the use of just a few brush styles and hundreds of brushes, combined with three drawing modes and the ability to add gradients. The resulting files can be saved to common file formats but it would seem that Photoshop's PSD format isn't supported.

Notable is the inclusion of Flame, Follow and Ribbon brushes as well as Normal, Lighten and Darken modes and gradient transitions. Brushes can be dragged and dropped from the Flame Painter website and it's possible to save and reuse brush presets. Anti-aliasing has made the program suitable for professional usage, as has the provision of unlimited, editable vector layers, complete with blending modes. Layers allow users to modify such parameters as color, gradient or opacity, modify the stroke, and change its shape, size or rotation or simply apply a new brush preset to it. Also appealing to pros is the ability to create large; seamless image tiling; a borderless presentation mode; the ability to convert vector layers to bitmap layers; an infinite canvas; one-click brush sharing in an online Brush Library; the showing and hiding of dock panels; the ability to view all brushes and gradients in one panel; zooming up to 800%; and the saving of resolution information with images.

Flame Painter 3 adds improved Photoshop integration in the Pro version, thanks to a new Photoshop CS5-CC plugin that creates a live connection between Flame Painter and Photoshop. It's also now possible to open and save layered PSD and vector SVG files, as well as copy and paste layers, complete with alpha channel, to other applications. A new hires renderer is said to generate effects free of moiré pattern artifacts. Pros will also appreciate the ability to now employ Wacom pressure-sensitive tablets.

Then there's functionality that has been added to both the Pro and Personal editions, notably 22 Photoshop blending modes. Also of note is the addition of unlimited layers; the ability to move and resize layers and the canvas; support for the Leap Motion controller; and multicore engine optimizations.

Flame Painter is available for free usage in an online, Flash-based version, with the Pro edition for Mac and Windows priced at $89.99. The feature-reduced Personal edition is available for $29.99. Trial versions are also available for download on the Escape Motions site.