What's new in PhotoLine 20


PhotoLine is a versatile all-purpose image and graphics editor. Enhance, edit and retouche photos, edit RAW files non-destructively, create multi-page layout designs and web mockups, prepare print-ready PDF files, export web images, and enjoy the built-in vector editing tools.

PhotoLine offers sophisticated tools to the creative professional: RGB, CMYK, LAB and grayscale color spaces, ICC color management, 16/32 bit per color channel, spot color support, PDF editing and export, and a non-destructive workflow with adjustment layers.

The most important new features of this release are:

And of course numerous small enhancements, workflow improvements, and performance improvements.

New Image Processing Features

Dynamic Filters

Previous releases of PhotoLine already feature many non-destructive adjustments and filters. These include complex filters such as Gaussian Blur and various sharpen filters. Some, however, could only be applied destructively.

In release 20 of PhotoLine all effects and filters are now nondestructive. Dynamic Filters and placeholder layers make this possible: any of the previously destructive filters and effects can be applied to a placeholder as a dynamic filter layer. Dynamic filter layers remain 'live' and their settings can be edited at any time. Update the contents of the placeholder layer and the dynamic filter layer is automatically recalculated.

External plugins are also supported (when the plugin developer enabled this option). Dynamic placeholder filter layers open up completely new ways of working in PhotoLine.

Match Colors

Match Colors

In the menu:

Tools > Color

The new Match Colors adjustment matches colors between two images. It is also easy to match the colors between a target top layer with a source layer below in photo compositing. The following example demonstrates the use of the Match Colors adjustment. Let's assume you want to superimpose a different face over a portrait photo you took. The Match Color adjustment drastically simplifies this process.

Sample Match Colors

Color Lookup

In the menu:

Tools > Color

The new Color Lookup adjustment remaps the original colors of an image by applying preset 3-dimensional color lookup tables (LUTs). These are commonly in use in the film industry, and allow for quick subtle or dramatic changes to photos in order to achieve a certain look. PhotoLine supports the common 3DL and Cube LUT file formats, as well as various types of ICC profiles.

Color Lookup

Context Blur

Context Blur

In the menu:

Filter > Blur

The new Context Blur filter is a variation on a blur filter. Depending on the settings it may be used to:

Sample Context Blur

Invert Adjustment Layers, Layer Masks and Clipping Layers


A new checkbox option in the layer attributes panel conveniently inverts an (adjustment) layer mask, and a vector or bitmap clipping layer.

Sample Invert

Copy Brush, Healing Brush, and Remove Brush Tools: Improved Source Selection

More comprehensive settings to improve the image source selection for the copy brush, healing brush, and remove brush tools are now available to the user. New options provided are “Source Layer”, Active & Below” and “All Layers”.

Graphics: Additions and Improvements

Optional Cubic Interpolation for Gradients

Cubic interpolation between gradient color stops is now possible in Photoline, in addition to the standard linear interpolation. This option generates a markedly smoother transition between gradient color stops.

Gradients Interpolation

Linear and Circular Gradients with Repetition and Mirroring

New options to repeat and to mirror repeat gradients are available.

Repeat Gradients

Circular Gradients with Elliptical Scaling

It is now possible to scale circular gradients non-proportionally and create elliptical gradients.

Circular Gradient Vertical Scaled

Improved Onscreen Widget Controls of Circular Gradients

Improvements are made to the onscreen widget controls of circular gradients:

  • Circular gradients can be easily scaled non-proportionally with a new widget control.
  • While editing, the circular gradient circumference is displayed onscreen as an outline.
  • A center point is added to the onscreen widget control to enable the user to reposition the circular gradient.
  • Editing Circular Gradients

    Vector Patterns

    PhotoLine now supports vector fill patterns. Fill patterns can also consist of combination of raster (bitmap) graphics and vector graphics. Vector patterns have the advantage to be scalable without loss of resolution and quality.

    Seamless geometric patterns can be tiled and arranged in several ways.

    Vector Patterns 1

    Single elements of a pattern may overlap, which simplifies the construction of repeatable patterns.

    To assist in pattern design, a new Pattern Mode view is added to PhotoLine (See below "Pattern View Mode")

    Vector Patterns 2

    Onscreen widget transformation controls for Pattern Fills

    The transformation of pattern fills applied to vector layers is now directly controllable onscreen with the introduction of the new onscreen pattern fill control widget.

    Access this control widget by switching to the Edit Vector Points tool. The onscreen control widget is displayed as a transformation box. Positioning the box with the top left small dot controls the origin of the pattern, while the three small square handles control rotation, proportional scaling and non-proportional scaling of the selected fill pattern. The controls are similar to Photoline's layer transformation handles.

    Vektor Pattern Transformation

    Corner-aligned Line Patterns and Line Pattern Start Offset Options

    Line patterns (dashed lines) introduce two new options: one that scales the line pattern in order to create corner-aligned dashes in a vector shape, and a second option that sets a start offset value to achieve finely-tuned line pattern alignment.

    Line Pattern

    New Display Modes For Documents

    PDF Proof Display Mode

    The new PDF Proof display mode simulates the color space conversions on-screen that occur when a document is exported to PDF. This is particularly useful when you wish to soft-proof colors before exporting as PDF/X1a.

    Pattern View Mode

    To assist in the creation of patterns, PhotoLine adds a new Pattern Mode in its View menu. When activated, the view will display a tiled version of the document's content. This view mode enables the user to quickly check whether the fill pattern correctly aligns relative to the document's edges.

    Pattern Mode

    Layer List Panel

    Layer Search Function

    Find Function

    Layers can now be searched. This becomes especially useful when working with complex documents and many layers.

    The user can either filter by layer type(s), or search for layer names.

    Find Function

    Protect Content

    Protect Content

    A new option is added to safeguard a layer's content from editing. When this option is activated for a layer, that layer is still selectable and moveable, but the content cannot be changed.


    Browse Panel: Custom Sorting Of Files

    Browse Panel

    Selecting the custom sorting option in the browse panel allows the user to freely arrange the files to display in any custom sorting order.For example, it is possible to sort files according to the daytime or based on their content. When done ordering the files manually, the Rename Multiple command can be applied to "fix" the custom file order.

    Spell Checking, Windows: Native Support on Windows 10

    If Photoline is installed on Windows 10, the built-in spell checker is used - just as is the case on macOS. It is no longer necessary to install a separate spell checker such as ASpell or Hunspell.

    Note: supported in the 64-bit version of PhotoLine.

    File Formats

    Import and export of PDF, PSD and SVG are significantly enhanced. PSD import now attempts to import both Smart Objects and Smart Filters and convert these to PhotoLine's native placeholder layers and dynamic filters. Almost all color adjustment layers are converted to PhotoLine's adjustment layers, thereby retaining editability of the original file.

    Placeholder Layers

    Minor Enhancements

    What was new in: