Pixelmator Effects

The best and the most fun way to browse: instantly preview and quickly apply special effects and color adjustments to images. Explore over 90 inspiring tutorials that will help you learn everything there is to know about Pixelmator tools, features and how to use them.

Pixelmator Pro: Effects pt 1 Effects, effects, and more effects! Lots of blurs, distortions, color corrections and more are hiding under the Effects tab in Pixelmator Pro. Have you seen them all? Explore 9 different groups with more than 160 Pixelmator effects. Go to the View menu and choose Show Effects. Use the Command-3 keyboard shortcut to quickly show or hide the Effects Browser. Reapply the last used effect on a different layer with the Command-Shift-F keyboard shortcut. There are a variety of effects in Pixelmator that you can use to make subtle or extreme changes to your images. You can apply simply adjustments, or add new elements. You can apply effects to an entire image, or just a selection. Take a look at some examples and then try to play with effects yourself.

Pixelmator Pro includes 8 different blur effects: Gaussian, Box, Disc, Motion, Zoom, Spin, Tilt-Shift, and Focus — each of these blurs layers in a different way.

The Gaussian blur effect adds a smooth, even blur to your entire image, text, or shape layer.

  1. Do one of the following:
    • Choose Format > Effects > Blur > Gaussian (from the Format menu at the top of your screen).
    • Click in the Show (or Hide) Tools from the View menu at the top of your screen.
      See Interface overview to learn more about the Tools sidebar.'>Tools sidebar or press on your keyboard, then click Add Effect to open the Effects browser. In the Blur effects category, choose the Gaussian effect or search for it by its name.
  2. Drag the Radius slider to the right to make the Gaussian blur effect stronger, or to the left to reduce it. Hold down the key to extend the range of the Radius slider. You can also enter a value from 0.0 px to 400.0 px.

Show Original: Click the Show Original button or press + on your keyboard to see what the image looks like without any effects.

To reset all effects, click Reset at the bottom of the Show (or Hide) Tool Options (from the View menu at the top of your screen).

See Interface overview to learn more about the Tool Options pane.'>Tool Options pane.

To preserve layer transparency when applying the Gaussian blur effect, click the effect name in the Tool Options pane and choose Preserve Transparency.

The box blur effect blurs the image and adds distinctive box shapes near contrasting areas.

  1. Do one of the following:
    • Choose Format > Effects > Blur > Box (from the Format menu at the top of your screen).
    • Click in the Show (or Hide) Tools from the View menu at the top of your screen.
      See Interface overview to learn more about the Tools sidebar.'>Tools sidebar or press on your keyboard, then click Add Effect to open the Effects browser. In the Blur effects category, choose the Box effect or search for it by its name.
  2. Drag the Radius slider to the right to make the Box blur effect stronger, or to the left to reduce it. Hold down the key to extend the range of the Radius slider. You can also enter a value from 0.0 px to 400.0 px.

Show Original: Click the Show Original button or press + on your keyboard to see what the image looks like without any effects.

To reset all effects, click Reset at the bottom of the Show (or Hide) Tool Options (from the View menu at the top of your screen).

See Interface overview to learn more about the Tool Options pane.'>Tool Options pane.

To preserve layer transparency when applying the Box blur effect, click the effect name in the Tool Options pane and choose Preserve Transparency.

The disc blur effect blurs the image and adds distinctive disc shapes near contrasting areas. The effect can be used to simulate the bokeh effect created by digital cameras in out of focus areas.

  1. Do one of the following:
    • Choose Format > Effects > Blur > Disc (from the Format menu at the top of your screen).
    • Click in the Show (or Hide) Tools from the View menu at the top of your screen.
      See Interface overview to learn more about the Tools sidebar.'>Tools sidebar or press on your keyboard, then click Add Effect to open the Effects browser. In the Blur effects category, choose the Disc effect or search for it by its name.
  2. Drag the Radius slider to the right to make the Disc blur effect stronger, or to the left to reduce it. Hold down the key to extend the range of the Radius slider. You can also enter a value from 0.0 px to 400.0 px.

Show Original: Click the Show Original button or press + on your keyboard to see what the image looks like without any effects.

To reset all effects, click Reset at the bottom of the Show (or Hide) Tool Options (from the View menu at the top of your screen).

See Interface overview to learn more about the Tool Options pane.'>Tool Options pane.

To preserve layer transparency when applying the Disc blur effect, click the effect name in the Tool Options pane and choose Preserve Transparency.

The Motion blur effect adds a blur that flows in one direction, creating the impression of speed and movement.

  1. Do one of the following:
    • Choose Format > Effects > Blur > Motion (from the Format menu at the top of your screen).
    • Click in the Show (or Hide) Tools from the View menu at the top of your screen.
      See Interface overview to learn more about the Tools sidebar.'>Tools sidebar or press on your keyboard, then click Add Effect to open the Effects browser. In the Blur effects category, choose the Motion effect or search for it by its name.
  2. Customize the effect:
    • Drag the Radius slider to the right to make the motion blur effect stronger, or to the left to reduce it. Hold down the key to extend the range of the Radius slider. You can also enter a value from 0.0 px to 400.0 px.
    • Move the Angle wheel to change the direction of the motion blur. You can also enter a value from 0.0º to 359.9º.

Show Original: Click the Show Original button or press + on your keyboard to see what the image looks like without any effects.

To reset all effects, click Reset at the bottom of the Show (or Hide) Tool Options (from the View menu at the top of your screen).

See Interface overview to learn more about the Tool Options pane.'>Tool Options pane.

To preserve layer transparency when applying the Motion blur effect, click the effect name in the Tool Options pane and choose Preserve Transparency.

The Zoom blur effect simulates the look of capturing a photo while zooming in or out.

  1. Do one of the following:
    • Choose Format > Effects > Blur > Zoom (from the Format menu at the top of your screen).
    • Click in the Show (or Hide) Tools from the View menu at the top of your screen.
      See Interface overview to learn more about the Tools sidebar.'>Tools sidebar or press on your keyboard, then click Add Effect to open the Effects browser. In the Blur effects category, choose the Zoom effect or search for it by its name.
  2. Drag the Amount slider to the right to create a zooming in effect, or to the left to create zooming out effect. Hold down the key to extend the range of the Amount slider. You can also enter a value from -200.0 px to 200.0 px.
  3. Move the handle of the effect rope to set the direction of the zoom effect. If the effect rope isn’t visible, click the Edit button in the Tool Options pane.

Show Original: Click the Show Original button or press + on your keyboard to see what the image looks like without any effects.

To reset all effects, click Reset at the bottom of the Show (or Hide) Tool Options (from the View menu at the top of your screen).

See Interface overview to learn more about the Tool Options pane.'>Tool Options pane.

To preserve layer transparency when applying the Zoom blur effect, click the effect name in the Tool Options pane and choose Preserve Transparency.

The Tilt-Shift blur effect creates a shallow depth of field, leaving a smaller, rectangular area in focus. This can be used to create a miniaturized look.

Pixelmator effects browserPixelmator
  1. Do one of the following:
    • Choose Format > Effects > Blur > Tilt-Shift (from the Format menu at the top of your screen).
    • Click in the Show (or Hide) Tools from the View menu at the top of your screen.
      See Interface overview to learn more about the Tools sidebar.'>Tools sidebar or press on your keyboard, then click Add Effect to open the Effects browser. In the Blur effects category, choose the Tilt-shift effect or search for it by its name.
  2. Customize the effect:
    • Drag the Blur slider to the right to make the blurring stronger, or to the left to reduce it. You can also enter a value from 0.0 px to 100.0 px.
    • Drag the Transition slider to set how gradually the effect should transition from blurred to in-focus. You can also enter a value from 0% to 100%.
  3. Move the handle of the effect rope to choose which area should be in focus and which areas should be blurred. Drag the handle of the outer circle to set how large an area should be blurred. If the effect rope isn’t visible, click the Edit button in the Tool Options pane.

Show Original: Click the Show Original button or press + on your keyboard to see what the image looks like without any effects.

To reset all effects, click Reset at the bottom of the Show (or Hide) Tool Options (from the View menu at the top of your screen).

See Interface overview to learn more about the Tool Options pane.'>Tool Options pane.

To preserve layer transparency when applying the Tilt-shift blur effect, click the effect name in the Tool Options pane and choose Preserve Transparency.

The Focus blur effect leaves a circular area in focus, blurring everything outside it.

  1. Do one of the following:
    • Choose Format > Effects > Blur > Focus (from the Format menu at the top of your screen).
    • Click in the Show (or Hide) Tools from the View menu at the top of your screen.
      See Interface overview to learn more about the Tools sidebar.'>Tools sidebar or press on your keyboard, then click Add Effect to open the Effects browser. In the Blur effects category, choose the Focus effect or search for it by its name.
  2. Customize the effect:
    • Drag the Blur slider to the right to make the blurring stronger, or to the left to reduce it. You can also enter a value from 0.0 px to 100.0 px.
    • Drag the Transition slider to set how gradually the effect should transition from blurred to in-focus. You can also enter a value from 0% to 100%.
  3. Move the handle of the effect rope to choose which area should be in focus and which areas should be blurred. Drag the handle of the outer circle to set how large an area should be blurred. If the effect rope isn’t visible, click the Edit button in the Tool Options pane.

Show Original: Click the Show Original button or press + on your keyboard to see what the image looks like without any effects.

To reset all effects, click Reset at the bottom of the Show (or Hide) Tool Options (from the View menu at the top of your screen).

See Interface overview to learn more about the Tool Options pane.'>Tool Options pane.

To preserve layer transparency when applying the Focus blur effect, click the effect name in the Tool Options pane and choose Preserve Transparency.

The Spin blur effect simulates the look of circular motion — a spinning wheel, for example — captured on camera.

  1. Do one of the following:
    • Choose Format > Effects > Blur > Spin (from the Format menu at the top of your screen).
    • Click in the Show (or Hide) Tools from the View menu at the top of your screen.
      See Interface overview to learn more about the Tools sidebar.'>Tools sidebar or press on your keyboard, then click Add Effect to open the Effects browser. In the Blur effects category, choose the Spin effect or search for it by its name.
  2. Drag the Amount slider to the right to make the spin effect stronger, or to the left to reduce it. Hold down the key to extend the range of the Amount slider. You can also enter a value from 0% to 200%.
  3. Move the handle of the effect rope to choose which area should be the center of the spin effect. If the effect rope isn’t visible, click the Edit button in the Tool Options pane.

Show Original: Click the Show Original button or press + on your keyboard to see what the image looks like without any effects.

To reset all effects, click Reset at the bottom of the Show (or Hide) Tool Options (from the View menu at the top of your screen).

See Interface overview to learn more about the Tool Options pane.'>Tool Options pane.

To preserve layer transparency when applying the Focus blur effect, click the effect name in the Tool Options pane and choose Preserve Transparency.

SEE ALSO

Add antique charm to any modern image by easily creating a vintage effect.

Layers, effects, the Gradient Tool, transform tools, and color adjustments are used in this tutorial.

Step 1

Open an image to which you would like to add a vintage effect in Pixelmator.

Step 2

Make the image black-and-white by double-clicking the Desaturate thumbnail in the Effects Browser (View > Show Effects Browser).

Step 3

To defocus the image just a bit, apply the Gaussian effect from the Effects Browser with the Radius set to approximately 1 pixel. Click OK when done.

Step 4

Since the Gaussian effect washes out the image corners, go ahead and smooth them. Click to select the Blur Tool in the Tools palette and drag over the image corners. Make sure that the blur strength in the Tool Options bar (View > Show Tool Options) is set to 100% before using the Blur Tool.

Step 5

Vintage pictures aren’t very smooth, so a bit of grain would make the image look aged. To add some grain double-click the Noise thumbnail in the Effects Browser and set Radius to 3-4%. Click OK to apply the effect.

Please note that the Noise effect looks most accurate with a 100% Zoom (View > Actual Pixels).

Step 6

To create an old-style sepia tone for the image, double-click the Sepia Tone effect in the Effects Browser, set Intensity to 90-100, and click OK.

Step 7

Download the old paper texture from the Tutorial Resources to your Desktop and simply drag-and-drop it to your composition. Use the example in the image below as a reference.

The texture will instantly appear as a new layer. If necessary, scale the texture to fit your image proportions by choosing Edit > Transform.

Step 8

In the Layers palette, change the texture layer’s Blending to Multiply, since the Multiply blending mode darkens and tones down the color of an image. Also reduce Opacity a bit to get a perfect texture blend with your image.

Step 9

Next, download and add the scratches image from the Tutorial Resources to your composition, the same way as the paper texture. If necessary, scale the texture to fit your image proportions by choosing Edit > Transform.

Step 10

In the Layers palette, change the Scratches layer’s Blending to Overlay, since the Overlay blending mode combines pictures equally. Reduce this layer’s Opacity to approximately 50%.

Step 11

And the final touch — color adjustments. In the Layers palette, click to select the layer with the image you’re applying the effect to (in our case, a picture of the Eiffel Tower). In the Effects Browser, double-click the Brightness thumbnail to bring up the color adjustment dialog. Reduce the Contrast to approximately -20%, since many old pictures aren’t very rich in contrast. Click OK when done.

Once you’ve learned to create the vintage effect, feel free to experiment by applying it to different images.

Pixelmator Pro Effects

Resources