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Home » News

Photo App Preview: Etchings

Submitted by on August 26, 2012 – 4:55 am 13 Comments

Etchings app for iPhone and iPadThe art of etching is hundreds of years old. Etching is the process of using a strong acid to cut into the unprotected parts of a metal surface to create a design in the material). It’s similar to engraving and remains in wide use today. We see etchings every day in our paper currencies.

We’ve got a preview of Etchings, a new app for iOS which will be released soon. It’s a unique app which adds the look of this classic artisan style to your photos. Read on more info and photos. >>>

The art of etching is similar to commercial halftoning. Before the photographic arts, it was used for hundreds of years to give shadow and depth to printed illustrations. It’s still used as one of the security measures in currency today, and is still widely practiced by many artists and craftspeople.

Etchings is super easy to use. Import or shoot an image, choose your style, adjust the line weight if needed, then share. That’s it. No sliders or other adjustments.

The first release of Etchings features eight variations of etching styles — from classic to more complex variations. Each etching can be adjusted more by tweaking the weight of the lines in the etching, from very thin to heavy. The middle weights worked best for me. There are a couple of styled etchings, including an old postage stamp style, and yes… there’s even one that looks like money (that’s really cool!). The effects — the etchings, the crosshatching and the rendering — are all very detailed and look great.

Images only save in square format at 1200×1200 pixels in this first release. The developers are working to increase that in a future update. Fortunately, the original, pre-filter images shot using Etchings’ in-app camera are also saved to your camera roll. Another great feature is Etchings supports Apple’s Send To App protocol, meaning you can send the image directly to other photo apps to work further without first saving it to your camera roll.

There are a lot of sketch and halftone apps, but Etchings is the first to add these effects. Etchings adds a unique, stark, high-contrast effect to your photos. It’s a cool effect and the looks Etchings adds are classic. There’s nothing else like it in the App Store.

Etchings should hit the App Store soon. We’ll keep you posted. Until then, check out more images below.

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Marty Yawnick

Marty is a self-employed graphic designer in the Fort Worth/Dallas Metroplex. He is an avid Rangers baseball, Chicago Cubs, Packers and Highbury Arsenal fan. In addition to capturing random moments with whatever camera is close by (usually his iPhone), his other interests include coffee, film, music, and traveling in seats 5E and 5F with his fiancé.

  • Phi

    I like the effects will be very cool with higher res savings….

  • Shannon

    I was hoping to see more accurate etching effects besides crosshatch. What about spit bite effects? As a printmaker and photo-etcher, this is a little disappointing.

    • http://www.etchingsapp.com Bill

      Hi Shannon,

      Bill here from MindSea, we are the Etchings app developers. I Would love to chat more with you about some of these etching effects. We definitely will be adding more etching styles to the app, and it would be great to get an artist’s point of view. Feel free to send me an email bill@mindsea.com.

    • Bill

      Hi Shannon,

      Bill here from MindSea, we are the Etchings app developers. I Would love to chat more with you about some of these etching effects. We definitely will be adding more etching styles to the app, and it would be great to get an artist's point of view. Feel free to send me an email bill@mindsea.com.

  • http://imeerocks.net Imee

    This seems rather cool actually. I’d buy this app :)

  • http://www.rhapsodyiphoneography.wordpress.com jeannie

    Love the quality of the etchings. Looks like a great addition.

  • Morplett

    I’m very impressed with the quality shown and this is definitely not something I’ve seen before. I’m very excited to give this a try. A much stronger aesthetic than the half-toning apps IMO (though I love them too).

  • http://zerozero31.tumblr.com zerozero31

    I’m not into the over-processed or over-effected images that some apps produce (I *hate* HDR) but this one looks different enough to be interesting. As long as it’s not too expensive (i.e., 79c) I’d probably give it a try.

  • tillie

    looks like a fun way to add a unique twist…look forward to the apps release.

  • Alexander Supertramp

    Stoked to see such an aesthetically product pleasing app. Great way to translate concepts from phone>paper>final piece.

  • http://simulacrumvs.webr.ly Lowell

    I’m eager to play with. Will there be layering tools built internally into the app? Also, do individual projects allow variability of effect Intensity within a single pic? When when when?!? I hate waiting for cool …

    • http://www.etchingsapp.com Bill

      Hi Lowell,

      Thi first release will let you control the weight(thickness and spacing) of the wavy lines via a number of presets. And of course there a the styles themselves. We plan on adding more fine tuning options in a future release. Hope that helps.

  • Rob

    Love it-BUT, higher res, PLEASE!