Photo editing on the iPad is a natural. Apple’s tablet offers a great touch screen for physically interacting with your pictures. What’s more, the iPad can easily go with you wherever you roam, while your laptop is larger and clunkier and your desktop has to stay at home. So it comes as no surprise that, just in time for the next-generation Apple iPad, Adobe has released its Photoshop (PS) Touch app for the iPad ($9.99).
Like the Adobe app for Android introduced last autumn, PS Touch for the iPad doesn’t provide the depth of features and functionality of Adobe’s desktop product, Photoshop Creative Suite (CS). Nor is the app meant to be anything more than an easily accessible, quick edit tool. However, it has something that the desktop application doesn’t: a sense of spontaneity, fun, and even mischievousness.
Edit Photos from Anywhere on Your iPad
PS Touch is part of a much larger imaging environment which Adobe will continue to roll out over the next few months. On the mobile side, this includes several apps for both Android and iPad: Kuler, Ideas, Collage, Proto, Debut and of course, PS Touch. (While all the apps are currently available for Android, PS Touch is the first for the iPad. The others are slated to be released for iPad shortly.) On the desktop side, of course, is CS, which includes full-blown applications such as Photoshop, Illustrator, and Dreamweaver.
All of these programs are being connected through the Web using Adobe’s Creative Cloud, so you’ll be able to save your pictures and projects in private folders and access them from your tablet, your computer and other connected devices.
In addition to using images that you store on Creative Cloud, PS Touch can already use pictures from your iPad’s photo album, and from various Internet sources such as Facebook or Google. You can even take a photo with your iPad’s camera from within PS Touch and load it directly into a layer of a currently open picture.
PS Touch is very easy to use, although for folks accustomed to desktop Photoshop, it might require unlearning old habits and getting used to a very different user interface (UI).
The app comes with several tutorials that provide step-by-step instructions with pop-up tips for various artistic processes, such as “add dramatic flare,” “paint with effects,” “create camera layers.” “clean up a background,” et. The tutorials are simple to follow, and they’ll get you playing with your own photos very quickly.
Icons at the top of PS Touch’s screen allow access to the various categories of options and tool menus: add picture, selection tools, transformations, image effects, and special effects, for example. A bar running down the side of the screen provides access to interactive tools, such as a paint brush, selection tools, cloner, eraser, and blur tool.
Through a “Scribble Selection” tool, for example, you can indicate what approximate portion of an area you wish to keep (as in the green area on the photo at right). You can then extract the “keep” section and paste it into a new background.
- iPad 2 or later
- iOS 5 or later
- Android 3.1 or later (some 3.1 devices are excluded)
- Internet connection required for using Adobe Creative Cloud to transfer files
- Photoshop CS 5 or newer, if you want to transfer your Touch projects to your desktop