Pixelmator – macOS App Review

Pixelmator – macOS App Review

Genre: graphics & design

Developer: UAB Pixelmator Team

Size: 78.3 MB

Version: OS X 10.11 or later

In-App Purchase: No

Last Updated: Oct 06, 2017

Version Of App: 3.7




We are all fond of photography and we need a tool to make necessary edits for each of our clicks. While Windows offers Adobe Photoshop to fulfill such tasks, Apple has a similar but different solution. If you are looking for an editing tool to make necessary edits on external images, then Pixelmator far outweighs every other editing application on the MAC store, and here’s why!

What is Pixelmator?

To easily put things into perspective, Pixelmator is an application for digital painting and image editing on Mac OS. It is by far the best image editing tool on the Apple’s app market. You can adjust color tones, transform images and perform other manipulations (similar to Adobe) using this application.

If your creativity bone tingles more than the rest of us! It offers you a blank portrait/landscape to start fresh. All you have to do is use the painting tools and craft the artwork of your own choice. However, before we move ahead with in-depth discussion on its features, I want to shine light that this tool is a bitmap program and therefore, does not support vector graphics.

Does Pixelmator resembles Photoshop?

The answer is yes! Pixelmator does resemble Photoshop in a multitude of ways. Firstly, when you will log in to both the application panel, you can see that they share a similar tool menu sidebar. There are several connections which one can easily find in between the interface, tools, and processing of both the applications.

While, Pixelmator match all of the tools which Photoshop supports, Photoshop is still different. It is an industry standard design tool with added support for animation development and adding high definition colors. There is a high chance that Pixelmator can ever replace Photoshop; however, it does give somewhat a competitive edge to it.

Pixelmator: The Assessment Journey Begins

While, the application is pretty diverse and if we set on to explain each and every individual tool it has to offer, my article will simply become a tutorial. Therefore, to make it less eye-straining and more informative, I have decided to take my viewers down an experimental lane down the product.

So, once you have installed the app and clicked the icon of Pixelmator, you will be directed to a Welcome screen. Here you can easily choose whether you wish to create a new image, open an existing image or simply access a recent one.

The options are pretty self-explanatory and irrespective of the one you choose, it will automatically direct you to the same interface as the one below.

Interface and Layout

As you can see the interface is quite customizable. You can easily drag and place editing tools, layout menus, and image settings pretty much anywhere you want. All panels are removable and resizable, which makes Pixelmator a more performance-centric solution for all Mac users.

Every panel comes with a set of tools which offers a wide range of functions such as editing or painting tools. They can be easily hidden or you can organize them to view using a drop-down menu. You can save or erase, or simply apply retouching options to each of the image as per your preferences.

Here is what a toolbar actually looks like in Pixelmator:

You won’t experience any such problem while replacing, selecting or making relevant changes to your desired image.

Adjust Colors Using Simple Drag & Drop

You don’t get a tiring long list of options to select from with Pixelmator. Instead, Pixelmator comes with an effects browser which represents and displays sample colors in small blocks. You can pick the right option from the editing slider as per your preference.


If you are wondering what the effects browser looks like, here is a snip of it.

You can set the color and design adjustments from the drop down menu located at the top of the Effects browser. By simply dragging and dropping an element from the menu options onto your desired image, the effect will automatically transform it accordingly.

Adding Distortions and Special Effects

The same effects browser further allows users to add special effects to their specific image. Pixelmator does not only come with a color adding or simple image transformation tool. It packs a number of effects such as ‘ripple’, ‘bubble’, ‘pinwheel’, ‘triangles’, ‘kaleidoscope’ and many more. You can easily distort the image as you require and create as many symmetries as you want.

This can indeed turn out to be a rather effective tool. It can be quite versatile as it allows user to create as many manipulations as they want. However, Pixelmator may lack in having the “warp” feature, but it overcomes that gap with offering a wide range of distortion features to have fun around with.

Paint Digitally

There is an artist hidden in each individual person and I believe Pixelmator helps you to bring out the artist within you. It comes with default brushes to choose from and you also get the option to customize your own brush. If you work with any specific type of brush, you can even import one to your Pixelmator.

All what an artist ever needs is the perfect set of brush in order to create one of the most amazing artworks in history. Same is the case online, if you have the liberty to work with your own set of brushes, imagine what you can create with Pixelmator.

Brushes on Pixelmator works incredibly smooth without any glitches or stutters. Here is what the Pixelmators brush menu actually looks like:

Image Export Options

Once done with your masterpiece, you now want to save your file which is rather easy. All you have to do is press (CMD + S) and hit Enter. It will automatically prompt you to choose your desired folder to save the file in JPEG or PNG format. However, these aren’t the only two options in which you can save your file using Pixelmator.

Infact, Pixelmator offers you the liberty to export file in other formats such as TIFF, PSD, PDF, GIF and BMP. All you have to do is navigate to File >> Export and the application will automatically take you to the export option. Choose your desired file type, specify the location and export it in your desired format.

Final Verdict

While most Photoshop tools may end up creating a mess of tools on your desktop and leave your mind boggled up with confusion, Pixelmator guides you through a step by step intuitive interface to get the perfect hang of things. It packs a dozen of amazing features which are available at quite a cheap price. The layout is pretty smooth and the application itself is the best fit for beginners.

It may lack up in a number of features as compared to the original Adobe Photoshop; however, it makes it up to the user with its sophisticated design and amazing user-friendly interface. If you haven’t purchased Pixelmator 3.6 yet for your Mac, now just might be the time. Try it! And let us know about your ultimate experience. You will not regret.