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  • Extensis Mask Pro

    Here is one plug-in I can honestly say is a keeper. However before running down to the plug-in store and throwing a Large handfull of cash at the check-out folks, read on. If your work involves lots of masking and especially of the complicated nature, this plug-in is a great help. Having tried Corel Knock-out and being less than "knocked out" by it, I was very impressed with the Extensis offering. While it offers mostly the same tools as found in PS and Photopaint and I suppose any good image editing program, the Extensis program allows quite a bit of user input as to selection parameters and, although it does have a mildly steep learning curve , it is fairly easy to master. I would suggest printing out the on line manual . PS 6 users may have to go to the Extensis web site and download the version which is compatable with PS 6 although by this time I would hope that is the version being distributed. Tools inclued color masking types and a neat pen tool to create selections with. Over all the program does a good job of masking difficult things like hair, etc and has some neat "undo" functions to help correct mistakes. With the improvement of the Extract function in PS6 some of the functionality of the Extensis product is perhaps a bit redundant, but overall, if you do Lots of masking(this is not a cheap program so be sure you need it) I would say " Go get it". For more info go to; www.extensis.com . Tom

  • #2
    The paradigm is considerably different than the PS extract command. In fact, it's so different I never did figure out how to get good results (the 'learning curve' you referred to). It does the same thing, but in a totally different fashion.

    They have a fully working 30-day demo on their site.
    Learn by teaching
    Take responsibility for learning

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    • #3
      I've heard alot of good things on this plug-in but like you said it is a little costly for the amount of masking I do. It might be nice to check out the demo and do a comparison with Photoshops abilities.
      Another great review from our master plug-in reviewer.
      DJ

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      • #4
        Dj, It would be worth the time to download and try out the demo, however, if you do be sure and print out the manual as you will need it to get a handle on using the program. Also, start with simple masking first then try the more complex like hair etc. I tried starting with a very complicated mask right off the bat and soon realized that its a lot easier to start with the simple stuff and work your way into the more complex. This program takes time to master so be prepared to spend a couple of hours per day working your way through the manual and doing lots of practice stuff. Tom

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        • #5
          I didn't realize it was that difficult to work with but I do have other Extensis programs that can be tough to master also so it doesn't surprise me. When my husband gets done with all these upgrades he's doing on this computer, I will check it out. May take a month before that happens. Trouble with checking out the demo is that it usually creates a need to get the full version and I know it's not in the budget at this time.
          DJ

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          • #6
            Actually, taking some time to evaluate your need vs. "want to have" is not a bad thing. This is a good time to actually evaluate how much complex masking you really do. If it isnt much, keep your money as the tools in PS will serve you just as well. This is really a specalized program for those who daily work on complex masking situations. Since I upgraded to PS 6, I have found that I dont use the Extensis program nearly as much as I did and today I probably would not purchase it, simply because of the PS improvements in the "extract" algorithm. Tom

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            • #7
              Re: Extensis Mask Pro

              I've been a Mask Pro user for years. The latest version is very powerful and does an excellent job. The learning curve is pretty steep, but once you get the hang of it, difficult masking becomes much easier.

              I also use the other OnOne Software utilities Intellihance Pro and PhotoFrame. Both handy tools and long time favorites of mine.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Extensis Mask Pro

                Originally posted by thomasgeorge
                Here is one plug-in I can honestly say is a keeper...
                Hello,
                I am first time in this forum, so nice to meet everyone, and I hope to have nice creative time here.
                Sorry for saluting not in the proper forum place, but being in a bit rush I would like to directly proceed with my question.
                Do you thomasgeorge, or anyone else in this forum seriously use Mask Pro 3.0 from Extensis, which is currently under onOne Software?
                I am particularly interested in the Maintain Transparency feature listed here http://www.ononesoftware.com/detail.php?prodLine_id=4
                The Color Decontamination technology built-in to Mask Pro allows you to mask difficult subjects like glass, lace and smoke with ease. Simply choose colors to keep and colors to drop and Mask Pro does the rest.
                Recently I have followed the MP_Transparency.mov video tutorial for respective task and almost achieved what I need. But I have one question to those who used this tutorial, because onOne itlesf doesn’t have help forums.

                p.s. @admin or mod: could you please delete Azmandius profile, which i created with a wrong username by mistake, thanks.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Extensis Mask Pro

                  Originally posted by Swampy
                  I've been a Mask Pro user for years. The latest version is very powerful and does an excellent job. The learning curve is pretty steep, but once you get the hang of it, difficult masking becomes much easier.

                  I also use the other OnOne Software utilities Intellihance Pro and PhotoFrame. Both handy tools and long time favorites of mine.
                  Hi Swampy,
                  So did you work with transparency following the MP_Transparency.mov video tutorial? Trouble is that after doing everything like in the tutorial i come with a strange result of some strange white spots instead of real objects.
                  I will better show screenshots:
                  When i finish removing dark background behind the bridal veil, here is what i get in Single Layer View mode (as well as in final result in Photoshop):
                  http://moldova.worldcarp.org/forum_f..._view_mode.jpg
                  And only in Mask View mode i see what i need, just like in the video tutorial:
                  http://moldova.worldcarp.org/forum_f..._view_mode.jpg
                  But how do i apply what i see in Mask View to my image in Photoshop?
                  Video tutorial doesn't say anything about that. To bad...
                  May be you can help me? There should be a small trick that i miss.
                  Thanks a lot in advance!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Extensis Mask Pro

                    After applying the Mask Pro and sending the veil area back to Photoshop can you load that selection of the veil? Once loaded you can apply the selection as a mask to any layer.

                    Photoshop sometimes has a problem selecting areas that have transparency less than 50%. You may want to work in Mask Pro at 100 opacity, then when you bring it back to photoshop reduce the resulting layer's opacity and set a blend mode that works for the selection.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Extensis Mask Pro

                      Originally posted by Swampy
                      After applying the Mask Pro and sending the veil area back to Photoshop can you load that selection of the veil? Once loaded you can apply the selection as a mask to any layer.
                      Thanks a lot. Probably that's what i didn't know i had to do. How do i actually load that selection of the veil and apply the selection as a mask to other layer?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Extensis Mask Pro

                        Mask Pro sends back a transparent layer to Photoshop. To load the selection, Select the veil layer and from the SELECT menu choose LOAD SELECTION. There are also keyboard shortcuts to load a layer selection, but they vary depending on Mac or PC and which version of PS you are using. In PSCS2, on a Mac, hold down the Command key and click on the layer thumbnail. When you get the marching ants, you can apply the selection as a mask to a copy of your background (or other layer) by then selecting the background copy and clicking on the small icon that looks like a square with a hole in it at the bottom of the layers palette.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Extensis Mask Pro

                          Hello again, and thanks for reply.
                          I've done exactly as you say:
                          http://moldova.worldcarp.org/forum_f...d/settings.jpg
                          and this is the result i got...
                          http://moldova.worldcarp.org/forum_f...ard/result.jpg
                          Strange...

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Extensis Mask Pro

                            AZ....

                            Mask Pro sends your knock out back to PhotoShop on a transparent layer. As I said before, to use the results as a mask on a layer, you must load it as a selection (Select menu, Load Selection), then apply it as a mask to another layer.

                            I did a very quick Mask Pro mask of some palm trees and applied it to a copy of the background layer. See my layer stack. After applying the selection of palms as a mask, I then then turned OFF the visibility of the Mask Pro Result layer. Otherwise the MP result layer blocks the masking effect.
                            Attached Files

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Extensis Mask Pro

                              Sorry to bother you again and again, but if you'll check my screenshots you will see that i did things exactly as you say, but the result is strange anyway. You should also notice the Mask Pro Result itself looks strange, even when still in Mask Pro environment, same as when loaded in Photoshop.
                              I think you could miss something from what i explained about my problem.
                              I hope you have ever tried to work with transparency in Mask Pro, especially using that transparency video tutorial, than you could understand what i mean.
                              Attached Files

                              Comment

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