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Exposure X: organize your photos your way

Exposure has been helping photographers develop beautiful styles for the past 10 years. Now see how Exposure X also handles the practical side of a professional workflow.

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The presentation of the new program from Alien Skin Software, Exposure X, uses some bold words, things like a “complete photo editor” and “no need to import your files”. This is not just an app, but a new full photo editor entering the market.

The introduction of Exposure X by Alien Skin Software marks a departure from the usual launch of a new version. In fact, the X on this version marks an absolute change for Exposure and also for Alien Skin Software, as they enter the realm of the alternative photo editors, where ON 1 with their Photo 10, and Serif, with the Mac only version of Affinity, already try to get space.

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Lightroom may well be market reference, and the program that changed it all, when it first was launched, years ago, but the software from Adobe is not alone any longer, and some people will find there are alternatives in other directions, even if the demise of Aperture suggested LR would be left without competition.

Exposure X continues to be used as a plug-in for Photoshop and Lightroom, but as Alien Skin Software puts it, the program can adapt to any workflow and be used as a complete photo editor on its own. One aspect they never tire of pointing at, when the program is used as a standalone app, is that Exposure X is fast at photo organization, practical edits, and creative styling, without the need to import your photos into the program. Yes, for some people this is an important asset, as not everyone likes the way Lightroom works.

On the information provided by Alien Skin Software one can read that “Exposure X is the creative photo editor that handles every step of your workflow. From card transfer to organization to editing, Exposure simplifies routine tasks and delivers a rich set of tools for developing beautiful photos. Available for OS X and Windows, Exposure X streamlines routine tasks and gives photographers a rich set of software tools for developing beautiful photos.

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One interesting aspect of Exposure X is the way the interface works. The program is configurable so photographers can move tools exactly where they want them and hide ones they don’t use. Users can browse preset styles visually with a grid of images to see how they will look on their photos. Exposure X edits non-destructively, so a photographer’s original photo is never touched and changes can always be undone. Additionally, using proprietary algorithms Exposure X handles RAW images from a wide range of popular cameras.

“Our engineers have built Exposure X using its predecessor, the award-winning and popular Exposure 7 software as a starting point,” said Finley Lee, CEO of Alien Skin Software. “I’m pleased to say that Exposure X now sets the new high-water mark, helping creative photographers at all skill levels keep up with their ever-expanding post-production work. Photographers can now spend less time on their computers and more time creating beautiful story-telling images that focus their inner visions for all the world to see.”

The team behind Exposure X say that “other photo editing software relies on complex concepts which force photographers to do extra work to serve the software, such as catalogs and separate user interface modules. Exposure X offers a better way by intelligently streamlining a user’s workflow, allowing them to focus on creative decisions.” The reference to Lightroom is evident, and even more so when they continue stating that “Exposure X doesn’t use a catalog, so users don’t need to manually import photos into a database. Just browse to a folder of images and immediately get to work. Exposure X can use cloud storage for working on the same photos at home and on the road or even collaborating with other photographers.”

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I’ve downloaded a trial version of the program and will get back to it if I feel there is something special to mention, but for now it is important to know that “Exposure X doesn’t rely on separate modules, so the full set of editing tools are available at all times. In the middle of organizing their photo library photographers can develop a photo’s style. No time is lost switching between modules.”

According to Alien Skin Software, “Exposure X imparts a human touch to digital photos through its carefully researched and flexible library of analog looks. Each look encompasses many subtle changes that work together to inspire a specific emotion. Exposure X covers every interesting corner of photographic history, such as funky Lo-Fi cameras, classic Kodachrome, modern portrait film, or all the way back to old-fashioned Daguerreotypes and autochromes. Photographers can explore these visual ideas for inspiration and then quickly refine them to develop their own personalized style.”

Exposure X is available now from www.alienskin.com for $149 USD. Owners of any version of Exposure may upgrade for $99 USD. Free upgrades will automatically be sent to everyone who purchased Exposure 7. There is a free trial available on the website, and multiple videos explaining the whole concept behind the program. Give it a try, you might be surprised.


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Journalist, writer and photographer since 1979, both print and online, with a vast experience in the fields of photography, software, hardware, web, aviation, History, video games, technology, having published content in almost all Portuguese newspapers…

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