Pixelmator 1.1 Kitten released: a ‘Photoshop Lite’ Mac OS X image editor

The Pixelmator Team today released Pixelmator 1.1 Kitten, a significant update to the GPU-powered image editing tool that provides everything needed to create, edit, and enhance still images. Pixelmator 1.1 Kitten features improved Leopard support, a built-in Quick Look plug-in, and tablet pen sensitivity support. Pixelmator 1.1 Kitten also features Core Image units and Quartz Composer composition support as filters.

“Since Pixelmator launched just over two months ago, we’ve been incredibly focused on harnessing the full power of Mac OS X,” said Saulius Dailide of the Pixelmator Team, in the press release. “And now with Core Image units, Quartz Composer compositions support, and the Quick Look plug-in, Pixelmator proves once again that it is one of the most innovative real-Mac OS X applications.”

Pixelmator includes a powerful Mac OS X standards-based plug-in architecture, which not only takes advantage of Core Image units, but also brings Quartz Composer compositions to image editing. Every version of Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard comes with a free Quartz Composer application that can be used to create almost any possible filter for use with Pixelmator and any other application that supports Quartz Composer compositions.

Pixelmator’s new built-in Quick Look plug-in makes it possible to view almost any of more than 100 image file formats supported by Pixelmator, without having to launch the application itself. The Pixelmator’s Quick Look plug-in is a significant enhancement not only for Pixelmator, but also for Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, because there are some exotic file formats supported by Pixelmator’s Quick Look plug-in that were not previously supported by Mac OS X.

In addition to graphics tablet support, Pixelmator 1.1 Kitten also features over 80 new filters, improved Leopard compatibility, and bug fixes.

Pixelmator 1.1 is a free update for current Pixelmator customers. Full system requirements, more information, as well as the Pixelmator demo version is available as a free download at the Pixelmator website. If you try it and decide to buy, Pixelmator 1.1 retails for US$59.

More info here.

Wired’s Michael Calore reviewed Pixelmator last month here.


  1. Apple should really offer something like this for free in iLife, or if not free then for cheap, perhaps in its iWork suite. A simple, easy substitute for Photoshop LE would make lots of Mac users happy!

    Not everyone wants or needs a full Photoshop for home, small office, basic photo editing. Something to bridge the gap between iPhoto and Aperture. Do it!

  2. Image Tricks is pretty cool too… and there is a free version.

    I take my hat off to the Pixelator team, but I tried it and really couldn’t get on with it. It felt like they had gone over the top with the black menu’s and the transparency etc.

  3. Hey Mac84,

    Why should Apple release something like this? What, you won’t buy this because its not by Apple? I have it. Its a great app. Especially for $59. I would hate to have Apple control everything.

  4. Well I think Apple should chuck money at these dudes to make it better and better (behind the scenes) then buy it outright and stick it in iWork. It’s a really nice app and in certain ways it is more powerful than photoshop (i.e. quartz composer plug-ins). I’m going to give it a month and report back then

  5. I can’t wait until Pixelmator is mature enough and provides the features I need for everyday use. The lack of vectors and some small touches are deal breakers, but I think it will evolve quickly.

  6. ‘Mac 84’ says we need “…something to bridge the gap between iPhoto and Aperture” And ‘January 24, 1984’ says he doesn’t want to pay $699 for an app he occasionally uses. I agree with both, but I think we already have the answer with Photshop Elements: 70% of the functionality of PS at 15% of the price.
    I’m on version 3, and waiting with great anticipation for version 5.

  7. Try LiveQuartz…

    REALLY – may not appear as wonderful as Pixelmator… but SERIOUSLY give it a go.

    Read about it… watch the video and discover how it functions. It’s a great little application. Plus, it uses LAYERS and Apples CoreImaging filters… it’s fast / responsive / easy to use and understand. Even works well on a G3 400 Mhz.

    And it is FREE. If you need to fill the void… don’t bother spending the 59 bucks. Though I tried Pixelmator and enjoyed it too. It had some obvious buggy occurrences.

    With a little practice you will see LiveQuatz fills a void well.

    jay and my thought provoking mintue

  8. If this is a raster editor, then it already does things iphoto and Aperture do not do – they adjust images, and help them be sorted out in their wonderful albums, but besides the patching (and red-eye) there are no real ways to use either for editing a photo. so this might be a good edition to either of them, not fill in a gap. Aperture’s beefed up sorting, key-wording, and adjustment make is an awesome iPhoto on steroids, not a PS substitute for image editing.

    it would be neat to see them offer it with iWork, and integrate it with Aperture or similar.

  9. Adios, Photoshop! Why should we shell out tons of cabbage for an app that is slow and does not take advantage of our superior OS?

    I went to their web site. This Kitten is cool!!!!

    Just my $0.02

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