e-Picture Pro, by Beatware
Posted: 27-Mar-2001

3 1/2 out of 5 Mice

Vendor: Beatware Type: COMMERCIAL

Reviewer: Judd Spitzer Class: PRODUCTIVITY


Recently I installed two programs on my iBook (300MHz with 96Megs RAM), ePicture Pro (EPP) and eZ-Motion (EZM). e-Picture Pro is designed to allow you to create graphic images primarily for use on the Web. Ultimately these images can be converted to various different formats from Quicktime to Shockwave, and, of course, standard GIF and JPEG formats as well.






Above is a screen shot from an e-Picture Pro window. In this example, I've created text on a curve. This program makes it simple for many design requirements, and helps you build your banner for the web, both quick and easy!

Another great feature of the software is 3D Text Design. This particular feature requires more memory and speed than my iBook could reasonably push out, however after I increased my virtual memory past 166Megs, I was able to do some 3D effects. So why 3D with this software? Well, this software will fill in your animation gaps for you. If you want to rotate a 3D object, design once, and let the software create the frames between where you start and where you end. Then export the file to the format of your choice.

3D text animation is really only the beginning with this software. As I found out, they have a process called tweening. This enables a person to create animations based directly on specific elements of the object. I found this extremely easy to use, and useful. Both EPP and EZM use a standard interface, so if you are familiar with one product, you can transition over to the other with relative ease. No need to re-learn the layout and design of the software.

EZM is also a powerful animation tool; however, its forte is creating objects with motion. Imagine placing a car, a plane, and a turtle on your page, and you want them to move across as if they are racing. EZM is your answer. You can import the images, set up your frames, and move them frame by frame. If you want, you can even have the software help you out. Not only can you import and create your own objects with EZM, but it comes with a nice library of objects to chose from, and this can come in handy when creating attention getting ad banners. You can created animated GIFs or Flash animations.


Both programs import many different graphic formats that are handled as objects. This enables you to bring numerous JPEGs or GIFs into a banner you are working on, allow you to use numerous filters and effect on the individual images, and not mess up the pixelation.

This software's strongest point is the ability to create web-based graphics, specifically banners and buttons. It even will generate javascript for rollovers if you choose to use the feature.

Pros

  • Both EPP and EZM use the same look and feel, making learning the software simple
  • Powerful tools for creating animated graphics
  • Simple to select and find all the objects on a page
  • Ability to import and export to various formats adds to the versatility of the software
  • Can handle 3D images created in other programs and rotate/animate them as well
  • Cross Platform editions (Made for both Mac and PC)

Cons

  • A bit on the pricey side for limited functionality
  • Unable to convert 2D images to 3D format, and rotate/animate based on that (embossing a logo to a globe or to a cube would be great)

Ease of Use
Unique Software Features
Image Effects
Overall


Overall Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5 Mice.

I recommend this software. When you're ready to sit down and create that banner for your web page, e-Picture Pro will make the difference between having a good web page, and a dynamic and exciting web page.