A great thing about using a mac computer, especially for enthusiast photographers, is the built-in Photos app they gain access to for free. This is a great little photo editor that has an easy to understand interface and allows for a good amount of photo editing without having to spend cash on some other software for basic corrections and edits.
However, what most people fail to realize is that this humble app can be turned into a much more powerful version of itself with the use of various extensions and plugins that are available.
How to Use Extensions with Photos
Adding an extension to Apple Photos is an easy process. Just download the extension you want and you’ll see a little ‘Extensions’ button in the tools panel of Photos. Click on it, click on ‘More’ and located your extension in the window that opens. Once you select your extension in this window, you’ll be able to access it from the Extensions button then on.
The Best Extensions for Photos
While there are many extensions available, each for a different purpose, here are some of the most useful ones:
As the name suggests, this plugin helps you remove noise from your photos. You can download it as part of the Creative Kit by MacPhun, or as a single app from the Store.
Upon opening Noiseless, you’ll see a list of presets that can reduce the noise in your photo automatically. If you’re not happy with the results, or would like to have more control over how your image turns out, you can play with the advanced options as well.
Have you ever taken a photo that looks great on the camera screen, but opening it on your computer reveals some specks of dust on the sensor that are ruining the image? Snapheal is a great extension that helps you remove these specks, or any unwanted objects, from your photos. You can make careful selections and adjustments using the Diameter tool for the eraser, or change the level of Precision with which selections are made. It’s a fairly easy to use extension that can come in handy when you need something removed from your photos.
Affinity Photo: Haze Removal
Many phone cameras suffer from low-contrast or hazy photos. The reasons for this haze can be a smudgy camera lens, or just the overall atmosphere in which the photo is taken. Affinity Photo’s Haze Removal extension is a great way to get some punchy contrast back in your photos without making them look artificial. You can alter the strength of the haze removal tool and also tweak the Exposure Correction slider to get the best results.
Affinity Photo: Retouch
Another extension from Affinity Photo is Retouch. This gives you access to tools like Dodge, Burn, Blur, and Sharpen. All of these are very handy when you want to make adjustments in small areas of your photos. The Dodge and Burn tools are used to adjust the lighting and contrast in parts of the image, while the Blur and Sharpen tools can help you tweak the focal points.
There are many extensions available for Photos that can help you really take the program to a whole new level of editing. The app may not be as feature-packed as the one it replaces for mac users, but with these extensions you can turn it into a much more usable photo editor for your everyday needs.