Topaz Labs have just recently added a new special effects module, called Topaz Glow , to their stable of plug-ins, joining 14 other offerings (Adjust, B&W Effects, Clarity, Clean, DeJPEG, Denoise, Detail, Impression, Infocus, Lens Effects, Remask, Restyle, Star Effect, and Simplify), each of which is available for prices ranging from $30 to $100 when not on sale. The entire collection can be had for a mere $290, although it sometimes comes on sale for less.
One can empty ones wallet or purse pretty quickly if one starts purchasing every available plug-in, since there are so many available. So I tend to focus on a single image editing software producer, learn their package well and only occasionally look further afield. For example, I do have three or four plug-ins from Topaz Labs, but I find myself using the Perfect Photo Suite from OnOne software in preference.
Having said all of that, I did download a 30 day trial version of Topaz Glow just to see what it might do.
Obviously the more time one spends with any piece of software, the more skilled one becomes. Nevertheless, here are a few preliminary Before and After images (be sure to click on each image to see it full size):
Waves on a small pond:
Eakin Creek Canyon (Winter):
When I took it, I thought that the image below would look way better than it does. There’s too much going on in it.
So I cropped to the image below. If you click on it though, you’ll see that the snow is sort of grubby and there are lots of bits and pieces strewn about. Not really successful.
Now look what happens when one tries a couple of different effects in Topaz Glow:
Either one of the above is an improvement, but of the two I like the Electric Neon effect better.
Here’s another Eakin Creek Canyon image which has been treated with Topaz Glow:
A frosty morning shot as the sun was rising (do you see the camouflaged tank in the back ground?) :
The grass was glowing because of the frost coating, but it didn’t turn out the way I saw it. Time for Topaz Glow!
And finally a sunrise image from the Kootenay Plains:
Will I buy the Topaz Glow plug-in? Well, I don’t think I need it, but on the other hand …