After two months of summer reflection, I’ve made the following list of apps I’ve used, some paid and most free to accomplish many tasks in place of my laptop. App smashing is the art of using the best abilities of many apps to achieve your goal. I’m excited to share them with you. Please let me know new apps you’ve found that help inspire creation and/or on-the-go working from anywhere.
Graphic Arts Creation
PicsArt Color Paint
Available for both iOS and Android. FREE at the time of the publishing of this article.
Basics: This app allows for the use of layers for tracing over a photo for later use, e.g., face, logo, object to get its shape for another purpose. Many brushes, text, and excellent colour palette and mixer function.
Enlight Photofox (Enlight 2)
Available for iOS. FREE at the time of the publishing of this article.
Basics: This app uses layers to build a photo with numerous effects from tone, vignette, light FX, and Retouch. Its tools and artistic effects are quite extraordinary. See photo below for quick example. You can easily add text, elements, stickers, frame and Meme, then export to a variety of sources. This company updates its apps regularly.
Made by Marshall Shaw with Photofox with photo enhancement, layer for birds and vignette feature.
Pixomatic – layer based photo editor
Available for both iOS and Android. $4.99 US at the time of the publishing of this article.
This app has superior object background removal ability, especially for difficult subjects, e.g., fine, curly hair. It allows for the addition of a background and foreground photos, as well as sets of free Packs of background images, and some paid. This app has numerous refining features, blur, filters, adjustments, distortion, text, cloning, and its impressive double exposure feature which is better viewed on the demo within the app.
Procreate – Sketch, paint, create.
Available for both iOS. $5.99 US at the time of the publishing of this article.
Apple Design Award winner and App Store Essential – Procreate is the most powerful sketching, painting and illustration app ever designed for a mobile device. This complete artist’s toolbox helps you create beautiful sketches, inspiring paintings, and stunning illustrations anywhere you are. Procreate features ground-breaking canvas resolution, 128 incredible brushes, advanced layer system and is powered by Silica: the fastest 64-bit painting engine on iOS.
This app is worth its monetary value, especially with the Apple Pencil. Similar with Photoshop, the user will have to invest time to become familiar with the interface and capabilities of this pro app by using Internet searches for help, the app’s help site, and Vimeo and Youtube for demonstration videos… there are plenty. There is also PDF support on the website for Procreate. I’ve even seen a user painting directly on the iPad Pro tablet with a special brush which was unbelievable to watch – Sensu brush. Please tell your artist friends about this!
VivaVideo – Best Video Editor & Photo Movie Maker
Available for both iOS and Android. FREE at the time of the publishing of this article. $4.99 US to unlock all functions.
This app allows for easy video editing with spectacular results if you are looking for template-driven (theme) movie preparation done automatically by the app. It is similar to the paid online product, Magisto but for far less money, and I believe, superior results and greater control. This app brings a lot of enjoyment using it. I highly recommend it.
From the company:
VivaVideo is one of the best Video Editor, Movie Maker, Slideshow/Photo Video Editor with Powerful HD Camera, Professional Video Editing Tools, 1000+ Video Effects and in App Store with over 200 million users. By choosing from 1000+ user-friendly video effects that range from themes, music, stickers, facial effects,GIFs, filters to animated clips and subtitles, you can create your video work and transform everyday moment into videos of art. VivaVideo will help you easily create professional-looking video stories, like montage, Meme, collage(PIP), lip-sync, duet videos, etc
Vimo – Video editor + Motion Sticker and Text
Available for both iOS. FREE at the time of the publishing of this article.
With Vimo, you can create motion photos and videos with the addition of many motion elements. Motion text and stickers can be synced with exact locations within your video to accentuate your subject with controls from duration, colour, and movement. A timeline allows for trimming of imported videos, filters, and accompanying music from within the app or from your music library (iTunes). It is a slick product, more tame compared with the automatic video enhancements of VivaVideo above but equally as enjoyable and useful.
Game of strategy
Tsuro – The Game of the Path
Available for both iOS and Android. FREE – iOS, only at the time of the publishing of this article.
From the company:
Create your own journey with Tsuro: The Game of the Path. Place a tile and slide your stone along the path created, but take care! Other players’ paths can lead you in the wrong direction – or off the board entirely! Paths will cross and connect, and the choices you make affect all the journeys across the board.