By now you all know of my penchant for good-quality, inexpensive image editing programs -- especially those that are available both as mobile apps and for use on a computer. So, when it was announced that Aviary was available for Windows8, I figured I'd give it a try.
I opened a few pictures I took with my little Sony Cybershot DSC-WX9 while at the Photo Beach Bash hosted by the Coastal Camera Club in Rehobeth Beach, DE, and started to see what I could do with them.
The first thing I noticed that Aviary is slow. And compared to most of the other free or cheap software I've been playing with thus far, my editing options were really limited and the software is really pretty slow. Most of the very basic editing controls were there -- brightness, contrast, saturation, cropping, etc. -- but the special effects, which I've come to really enjoy playing with, were sorely lacking.
The image quality seems decent enough, but the program really doesn't give me the kind of control I've become accustomed to at any level. While the images presented in this article were all edited using Aviary for Windows8, nothing was done that I couldn't have done as easily or better and faster using the other software I already have.
Here, we see the main editing screen, once you've go an image file loaded (which is a less-than-straightforward process). The primary functions are shown along the bottom of the screen. Almost all of the functions are self explanatory, so I won't spend any real time with that here.
The paltry selection of effects is illustrated here. As Porky Pig would say, "That's all, folks!" An even dozen effects, most of which are weak and none of which are adjustable.
Aviary did launch an SDK alongside the app, which paves the way for other developers to provide enhancement (sorely needed) or integration into other apps, but I'm not even sure that's enough to help bring Aviary up to speed any time soon. Bottom line, in my opinion? Give Aviary for Windows8 a pass. Fotor, Photoroom and Superphoto all offer more, better and for the same or only a little more money.