ACD Systems community

ACD Systems Blog

Newer Older

Speed Up Your Workflow!

2013-12-31 19:30:01 GMT

When you’re trying to perfect your images in a timely manner for your family, friends, and clients to see, you want to do what you can to keep the process speedy and efficient. Here are a few ways to help:

With ACDSee you can edit your photo to meet your needs and save the settings as a preset to use on all similar photos. With ACDSee Pro 7 you can use presets in all modes, View, Edit, and Develop.

Improve areas that are too light or too dark with ACDSee’s patented LCE (Lighting and Contrast Enhancement) technology. This tool instantly lightens shadows, reduces highlights, and can change the tonal range and color balance with ease.

Organized Digital Photo Storage
There are a number of ways to keep your photo storage organized. You can add metadata, ratings, keywords, categories and location details to your images. Quickly identify photos for further processing with visual tags and color labels. You can use these search tools to find photos based on almost any criteria.
Metadata: Metadata refers to any information embedded within a file. For example, digital photos can contain information about the type of camera, flash speed, time of day, image size, and so on.
Keywords: Within ACDSee you can keyword your files in a hierarchy and maintain these groups in the Keyword tree. All you have to do is select the Organize tab in the Properties pane to create, rename, delete, and move your keywords.
Location: ACDSee uses the latitude and longitude information embedded in your photos to lookup the nearest readable address or place name. Simply select a pin on the map, choose “Reverse Geocode” and ACDSee will write the matching location details into the appropriate IPTC fields.
Tags & Color Labels: Tags and color labels are useful for naming and quickly identifying your processing plans for your images. Different colors can be used to represent different stages of your workflow. For example, as you review your photos you can quickly label files to upload, print, reject, review, or sharpen, or any other term that matches your workflow needs. Once your files assigned to that label. You can also use color labels in combination with the Group by, or Filter By features to refine your list. Color labels, like tagging, categories, and ratings, are a way to set aside, organize, and group your photos without moving them into different folders.

Copy & Paste Metadata
This new feature can save you time by copying and pasting all the metadata information from one image to another. You can easily select among IPTC, GPS, and ACDSee metadata.

Keyboard Shortcuts
There are pre-defined keyboard shortcuts for commands that you use frequently in Manage mode and View mode. You can change pre-defined shortcuts, or create keyboard shortcuts for commands that do not currently have shortcuts.

Batch Processing
In ACDSee Pro you can make one type of edit to many images, make multiple edits to multiple images, and save a batch of images to a variety of outputs quickly and easily with the Batch function.


Macro Photography - A quick how-to.

2013-12-10 18:01:04 GMT

Macro photography is photography magnified. It is generally recognized as “macro” when you are increasing the size of an object in your picture from about half life-size, as represented on the image sensor, to five times life-size.

What you’ll need:
  • DSLR with a bright optical viewfinder.
  • Special purpose macro lens, not necessary but would be nice.
  • A close-up attachment. This is a filter-like lens that mounts to the front of your normal lens and allows you to focus more closely.
  • Ring flash or a flash unit if shooting at a low aperture. It is impractical to use your camera’s built-in pop-up flash because the length of the lens, with or without the macro attachments, will cause a shadow from the camera’s flash.
  • Tripod


  • Your f-stop should be no wider/larger than f/16 to get most of the subject in focus.
  • Narrow depth of field. This is unavoidable.
  • Use the fastest shutter speed possible to prevent unwanted subject motion/blur.
  • Autofocus doesn’t always work well when shooting extreme close-up photography. Switch to manual focus and you’ll get more consistently sharp macro pictures.

Be Creative:

  • Shoot from unexpected angles.
  • Try front lighting for deeper color saturation and side lighting to highlight texture.
  • Experiment.

Need a break? Check out these funny photo apps

2013-12-05 22:27:21 GMT

In a world full of cell phones and tablets, taking photos is super convenient, but when it comes to editing and enhancing right from the source your choices are limited. There are basically only 4 features available: rotate, enhance, red-eye, and crop. These are nice to have, but they’re nothing special.

Now you’re looking for something to make your photos a little more fun and silly (why not right?). check out this list we compiled of our favorite and funniest photo apps!

1. AR Pho.To Cartoonizer
One of the unique things about this app is that you can apply realistic emotions to a face and then animate them. You can even turn yourself into an alien or troll just for fun!

2. ToonPaint
This app doesn’t just convert your images and apply filters, it also allows you to color in your images by painting with your fingers, letting you create different variations of the same photo.

3.Paint FX:
This is an advanced app with filters, effects, enhancements, and more that can be applied to any parts of your image with just a tap or swipe. Meaning, you can pick and choose which parts of the photo you want to change.

4. Artwork Studio
Artwork Studio isn’t just about sketches, you can also transform your photos into oil paintings, comics, and pop art - in just one click.

5. Animal Head Photo Mashup
If you want to amuse your friends and family with a giggle, this should do it! With this app you can superimpose an animals head onto your photo. The app includes 17 animal faces.

6. FacePLANT
You might be thinking this is just another “face-swapping” app, but this one stands out because of its extra features. Additional features include the addition of hats, glasses, and word bubbles, and you can adjust the lighting and color.

7. PhotoFunia
How about putting your face on a billboard or a stamp? This app can do that, and make it look realistic. PhotoFunia finds your face in the photograph and melds it with one of the app’s 300 scenes.

8. Tiny Planet Photos
Turn your world into a tiny planet. This nifty app turns any photo into a convex or concave sphere. Keep in mind that this feature works best with landscapes, properly lined up to create a perfect little planet.


How-To Create a Holiday Bokeh

2013-12-03 23:41:52 GMT

Bokeh: a Japanese term for the subjective aesthetic quality of out-of-focus areas of a photographic image.

In ACDSee Pro 7 and ACDSee 17 you can achieve the bokeh effect but using the Lens Blur tool in Edit mode. The Lens Blur tool produces a blur that mimics the blurring effect of a camera aperture.

Here’s how to create that effect:

1. In Edit mode, in the Detail group, select Blur.

2. In the Blur type drop-down list, select the type of blur to apply.

3. Set the following options:
  • Select a bokeh shape from the options on the Blur panel. These shapes concentrate in highlights.
  • Amount specifies the strength of the blur. Move the slider to the right to intensify the effect.
  • Bokeh Frequency specifies how often the bokeh shapes show up.
  • Bokeh Brightness specifies how much the bokeh shapes stand out.

4. Do one of the following:

  • Click Done to apply your changes and close the Blur tool.
  • Click Cancel to discard all changes and close the tool.


2013-11-20 00:51:45 GMT

Deneba Software (an ACD America company) announced today the availability of the newest version of Canvas. Canvas 15 allows engineers and technical graphics professionals to illustrate and communicate with confidence, utilizing a limitless combination of documents, images, and data, and improves productivity, and technical illustration workflow. Canvas is the preferred solution in precision industries, such as aerospace and automotive, biotechnology and healthcare, education, government, manufacturing, oil, gas and energy, and technology.

“For 20 years, Canvas has been removing workflow obstacles, providing smooth transition between existing workflows. What used to take a day, now takes an hour with Canvas,” said Dallas Vandekerkhove, General Manager of Deneba Software. “It has a unique feature set combining raster and vector functions in a single editing and publishing environment. Nothing is too small or too large for Canvas.”

New features in Canvas 15 include:

  • Effortless Precision. Use the Smart Mouse and Guides to precisely snap lines to objects and manage complex angles and distances. Take the guesswork out of centering, dividing, and snapping to corners of geometric shapes and aligning lines at sensitive angles with these sophisticated guidance tools.
  • Carefree Copying. Quickly unify the elements of your project by using the Attribute Dropper tool to copy the attributes of one vector object to another. This feature makes it easy to maintain the consistency of aspects like stroke, pen, fill ink, text style, transform, dimensions, transparency, and more.
  • Tightened Text Workflow. Diversify your projects with quick, hassle-free access to special characters. Speed up your editing process with the ability to merge multiple text boxes, including merging all the boxes on the page, or simply a selection.
  • An Expanded Library. Canvas 15 comes packed with additional symbol and clip art libraries perfect for a diverse range of tasks, from crime scene labeling and furniture layout, to circuit board design and energy exploration.
  • Enhanced Work Environment. Side-by-side important documents, work with multiple instances of Canvas at once. Modify, save, and load toolbox and window layouts for specific users and tasks to streamline workflow.

Pricing and Availability
Canvas 15 will be available online for $599.00 (msrp) and Canvas +GIS for $799.00 (msrp). Canvas 14 or earlier users can upgrade starting at $299. A free 15-day trial, full system requirements, and more information about Canvas 15 can be found at

About Deneba
Since Deneba’s first release of Canvas in 1991, there has been just one focus: to work with companies like yours to build a top-tier technical illustration, presentation, and publishing tool for scientists, engineers, and manufacturing teams. To this end, we joined forces with ACD Systems in 2004 — one of the largest and most respected independent digital image editing and management companies in the world. Together, we are proud to continue our 24 year-long commitment to bringing powerful and relevant technical illustration publishing solutions to important aerospace, heavy manufacturing, research, and energy development organizations.

The company’s products include Canvas 15 and Canvas 15 +GIS, which helps Fortune 500 companies enhance, manage, and disseminate their valuable digital assets. Customers include General Motors, Caterpillar, Boeing, Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, British Petroleum, Exxon Mobil, The New York City Fire Department, NASA, CNN, and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.