Developer: Peta Vision
Price: $3.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 5

iPhone Integration Rating: ★★★★☆
User Interface Rating: ★★★★½
Re-use Value Rating: ★★★★☆

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆

Like many artistic photography apps, Retromatic HD offers some handy tools but still requires a decent dose of creative spirit to make truly wonderful things.

The app is focused on making retro-style posters out of regular photos, which means it caters for high resolution images, something that all too many photography apps fail to cover. It’s simple and classy to use, although it might take a bit of time to truly get the best out of it.

To start with, users have to highlight the outline of an image they want to use. This is done by ‘cutting’ out the focus of the photo, such as a person or object, with a brush. Unfortunately, this brush doesn’t appear to be adjustable, making finer strokes near impossible. While cutting out the shape of my Christmas tree, for instance, I’d have liked to have easily cleared any of the clutter around it, but it’s far from simple with a clunky brush.

However one manages to get around the brush issues, things smooth out significantly with the app’s further features. Users add a background to their image, with a wide choice of patterns and colors, before applying filters. The filters are similarly varied, too, with no obvious weak points. Retromatic HD is an app that offers more subtle effects, rather than regular filtering apps and it plays in its favor.

To round off the package, users can then add items such as insignias or stars, as well as text of their own choosing. In each case, it’s not essential but it can vastly improve the looks of certain images.

Sharing options are similarly well rounded, with all the most commonly used places available, plus the option to save to the Camera Roll for later reference.

I found the more I used Retromatic HD, the more I liked the things I made. At first, I was a little too clumsy, trying to add too much to images, when less is often more. With practice, though, some of the results are really quite delightful. They can make a huge difference to an otherwise mundane photo.

Posted in: iPad Apps and Games, iPad Photography, iPhone Apps and Games, Photography, Reviews

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