Less than a month after the release of Pixelmator Pro 2.2, Pixelmator Pro 2.3 is now available. The new version is codenamed Abracadabra “because it’s just so charming”, and it adds several new features, including automatic background removal, automatic theme selection and more.
The new Magic Background Eraser tool allows you to remove the background from any image with a single click. It works by using a convolutional neural network to identify the subject in “almost any image” and remove the background. The tool uses three different machine learning models that work together. You can see it in action in the short tutorial below.
Magic Background Eraser also includes a quick action built into the Pixelmator Pro Finder app. Moreover, it includes the feature of Decontaminate Colors. When a subject is removed from its background, there are occasional traces of background color left behind. With AI, the Decontaminate Colors tool gives your image another swipe to clean up the edges. You can apply it yourself on any layer in the application.
Not surprisingly, considering the work going on behind the scenes with target detection with Magic Background Eraser, Pixelmator Pro 2.3 includes a separate subject selection function. With a single click, you can select your subject and refine the selection with the new Select and Mask tool. The tool is designed for objects with complex edges, such as hair and fur, and can be enhanced with Smart Refine (automatic) and Refine Edge Brush (manual).
These big new features are powered by the machine learning algorithms that the Pixelmator team spent the past year developing. The company writes, “Because Pixelmator Pro does more than simple background removal, we decided to create three algorithms—one to detect image subjects, one to enhance selection edges, and one to remove color decontamination at the edges of objects. “
The first step an AI does is to find the subject and create a rough mask around it. The next step is to refine the edges of the selection. Then a third AI model enters the scene to perform color decontamination. You can see every step in the process in the pictures below.
|Step 1: Find the subject of the photo|
|Step 2: Refine the edges of the selection|
|Step 3: Remove color pollution from the edges of the object|
Pixelmator Pro 2.3 is now available as a free update for existing Pixelmator Pro 2 owners. To view the full list of updates, visit the Pixelmator Pro update page.
For new owners, Pixelmator Pro 2.3 is on sale at a 50% discount, bringing its price down to $19.99. You can purchase Pixelmator Pro through the Mac App Store. By the way, the app works natively on Apple Silicon, for those of you who are using Apple M1-powered devices.