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Our Review of PortraitPro 18 – Is This Software Worth It?

Portrait photography can be a pretty demanding genre of photography. With clients that have high expectations, it can be hard to produce images that please. Thankfully, specialist editing software for portrait photographers has been produced. One of these types of software is PortraitPro 18. In this article, we’re going to give you a full PortraitPro 18 review to help you decide if this is the right kind of software for you.

About PortraitPro 18

PortraitPro 18 is a software developed by Anthropics Technology. With a heavy focus on research into human appearance, Anthropics have been able to create the specialist portrait software, PortraitPro.

PortraitPro 18 Price

If you’re looking to purchase portrait pro, the base software retails for $89.90. However, there is a 50% discount for online downloads, slashing the price to $44.95. If you wish to upgrade from the standard package, PortraitPro Studio costs an extra $25.00, and PortraitPro Studio Max will add on $95.00.

PortraitPro 18 Prices

With that said, if you’re not entirely sure this product is for you, you can test the waters first with a free trial. This trial offers all the same features as the standard software package.

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Our Review Using PortraitPro 18’s Free Trial

PortraitPro 18 is an Easy Program to Teach Yourself

One of the great things about PortraitPro is how easy it is to use. All in all, the program is very intuitive, and if you’re ever not sure how to do something, there are lots of tutorial videos to guide you through. Add to that the fact that it’s really easy to undo things and you’re in a pretty foolproof situation.

When making adjustments, most can be made with a simple slider adjustment or preset selection. However, there are a few more advanced tools that PortraitPro has integrated into its software – these usually come with video tutorials to guide you through.

PortraitPro 18 automated tutorial
The moment I began exploring PortraitPro’s background selection field, a video tutorial popped up. It showed me step by step how to navigate the feature!

Even if PortraitPro doesn’t show you exactly how to handle a situation, there are plenty of additional resources available online. Mastering PortraitPro 18 can be as simple as watching a few YouTube videos!

Anthropics tutorial library
Anthropic’s website offers a library of PortraitPro tutorials. Whenever you have a question on how to pull something off, you can reference their library and watch how to do it step-by-step.

Out-of-this-world face detection.

PortraitPro’s greatest asset, without a doubt, is its facial recognition capabilities. The map it generates for each subject’s face guides the rest of the program’s editing features.

PortraitPro 18 gender detection
When you upload an image, PortraitPro quickly finds a face and asks user’s to identify it as male, female, or “child”. The selection informs the program on how it should apply filters and perform automated manipulations.

When a portrait is uploaded, PortraitPro identifies the location of a few basic features such as the eyes, nose, and mouth. Each feature has its own set of controllable options, and the points indicate the areas in the image where adjustments will be made.

facial feature recognition
PortraitPro places anchor points around major facial features such as the jawline and the eyes. When ordered to shape the face a certain way, the program simply shifts the locations of those pinned anchor points.

Quick Edits with Automated Presets

After finding a person’s features, PortraitPro creates a series of facial presets almost instantly. A standard filter is applied automatically once PortraitPro finishes uploading your original file.

automatic preset sample
After analyzing my face for a minute or two, PortraitPro generated and applied this preset fit specifically to my features.

However, switching over to a different look is as simple as pressing a button.

PortraitPro 18 preset selections
If the initial automated preset doesn’t suit your needs, there’s no need to worry. There are several to choose from that can transform your look in a matter of seconds.

Users shouldn’t rely too heavily on PortraitPro’s presets, as the software’s idea of beauty doesn’t always align with our own. That being said, a preset can provide a great starting point to guide the rest of your edit.

portraitpro 18 review: failed preset example
PortraitPro’s presets are far from perfect – at times, the program yields heavy-handed results.

PortraitPro 18 Review: Advanced in Some Fields, Limited in Others.

A review has to be brutally honest, and our PortraitPro 18 review is just that.

Whilst PortraitPro has some incredible features, it’s far from perfect. In some areas, the technology seriously lacks.

While experimenting with hairstyling, for instance, some functions performed better than others.

PortraitPro automated mask
I was pretty impressed with the automatic mask PortraitPro was able to generate around my hair! It missed a few flyaway strands and picked up a small portion of the blanket, but overall, it did a great job!
hair color samples
PortraitPro offers controls to change the color and saturation of a subject’s hair. It yielded pretty convincing results when I turned myself grey. But going strawberry blonde wasn’t nearly as successful.

As one might expect, PortraitPro’s greatest strength is its ability to manipulate facial features. The program really allows you to hone in on an area and mold it to your exact preferences.

PortraitPro 18 review: slider adjustment options
For every area of your face, there are advanced controls to alter shape, shading, brightness, and color. Here’s a look at some of the sliders available for adjusting eyes.

It’s important to keep in mind, though, that even PortraitPro 18’s facial editing features aren’t always perfect. It’s quite easy to go overboard and attain less than realistic results and even experience a bit of distortion.

PortraitPro distortion
Make adjustments with care – setting sliders to maximum settings can yield artifacting.
portraitpro 18 review: eye color adjustments
Evidently, this is what PortraitPro thinks brown eyes look like…

Unfortunately, there are some areas in which PortraitPro really lacks. Namely, anywhere that isn’t your subjects face. For example, though the latest iteration boasts the ability to identify and mask backgrounds, the execution was subpar.

layer mask detail
PortraitPro did well creating a mask for my hair. However, I was less than impressed with the fuzzy selection it made for the background of this portrait

More importantly, the program can only perform rudimentary global edits to exposure, tonality, and color. There are no curve adjustments to closely tweak highlights and shadows. I couldn’t even find a setting to convert my image to black and white.

Related Post: The Best Portrait Photography Lenses

The Power to Completely Transform a Person’s Look

One of the greatest things about PortraitPro is its ability to beautify a subject that may be looking less than their best. One way of doing so is through the software’s makeup application sliders. So long as you don’t go overboard, it yields some pretty realistic results!

PortraitPro 18 makeup application
PortraitPro doesn’t stop short at fixing imperfections – there are also sliders that apply makeup! While I personally prefer a more natural look, this feature could be helpful for giving glamour shots an extra boost.

There are also options that allow you to brighten eyes, smooth out skin, and plump up lips. For clients expecting perfect pictures, PortraitPro cleans up undesirable areas quickly and easily.

skin smoothing tool
I was a big fan of PortraitPro’s skin adjustment settings. Blemishes and wrinkles can be smoothed over in an instant!

It’s easy to spend hours experimenting with the ways PortraitPro can change a picture’s appearance. However, in a pinch, it can swiftly apply changes that would take hours to attain manually in Photoshop.

PortraitPro 18 Review: Our Final Thoughts

PortraitPro fills a very specific niche, and in a lot of areas, performs impressively. However, even the latest version has its limitations

If you are not a portrait photographer, PortraitPro will not meet many of your needs. What’s more, it’s not suited to be a stand-alone product. It lacks the cataloging features of a Lightroom, and it lacks the advanced and expansive toolset of Photoshop.

A few of the features advertised with the latest version don’t quite live up to industry expectations. In particular, the program’s layering capabilities are extremely limited. Adjustment options for basic features like tonality are mediocre, and there’s not much in the way of working locally.

That being said, most of what it specializes in it does relatively well. Its face detection abilities are superb and the presets adjust to fit an individual subject’s features. This program makes it easy to entirely change the shape of a person’s face in a relatively natural way that preserves all of the image details.

For many, PortraitPro isn’t a good fit. It can be heavy-handed at times. However, with some practice and foresight on what the program can and cannot do for you, Portrait Pro can be a real asset to have in your toolkit.

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