Lots of really interesting photo manipulation tools have been created by independent developers, but once they are purchased (for $.99) there is no recurring revenue stream, so no incentive to update an app as Apple moves forward with the platform and changes occur in the underlying app structure. This means we lose really useful tools because the app developer simply can’t continue to update apps that aren’t providing them with more money.
Here are some of the really useful photo manipulation tools that I’ve used in the last few years that have disappeared from the App Store. If you know of other great tools that have disappeared let me know in the comments.
- Rollage – An app that combines two photos in several really interesting ways. Here’s a great tutorial on using Rollage from the app whisperer.
- PatternTool – this is a tiling application that allows you to select a small area of a picture and create a variety of tiles from that selection. It’s doubly sad for me as a similar tool that was available as a Photoshop filter (Terrazo) was also discontinued. It’s a really fun and useful application.
- TwistCam – is an app that created a circular selection of configurable number of rings and allowed you to rotate the selection. This was a great tool for creating decorative frames and interesting effects.
- LED Photo – Took a picture and created a dot pattern (of varying sizes) out of a picture. It averaged the color value for the area of a dot and allowed you to select parts of a picture to work on. It created some really interesting swatches of color when applied to a section of hair.
- Shock My Pic – It’s hard to describe this filter. It creates an underlying pattern out of a picture that looks kind of like brush strokes, but not exactly. It implements the Coherence Enhancing Shock Filter algorithm.
- Spica Super Monochrome by Daisuke Nogami – A monochrome filter that created dramatic black and white photos in a way that I have not found any other filters that come close. (See below).
- iDroste – The Droste effect is a picture which contains a copy of itself in a smaller version which itself contains a smaller version … Here’s some interesting examples.
- Instashake – This app is a tool to combine two pictures, a bit like Rollage, but with many more modes and a soft gradient merge between pictures. See the Jemez picture in the gallery below for an example. It’s a awesome tool for creating a collage of impressions. I believe the version of this that runs on Android devices is still available in the Google Play Store.