“Photogenic Alchemy” heads to iPhone with Silver app


posted Tuesday, December 17, 2013 at 1:26 PM EDT


Earlier this year we covered photographer Matthew Cetta's Photogenic Alchemy project, where he exposed 35mm film to bizarre chemicals in order to create unique and unconventional effects. Now he's teamed up with an app maker to bring some of the same interesting editing to the iPhone, with a new free app called Silver.

In an email press release, Cetta explained a bit about the app, saying:

The app, called Silver (due to the prevalence of the element in the photographic process), embodies the very spirit of Photogenic Alchemy; Play.  Silver lets you play with a photo on your camera roll by allowing you to manipulate the brightness/contrast/opacity/blend modes/color temp/hue/saturation etc.  Then after you have done this to your image you can manipulate it further by adding layers to the image.  You can then edit these layers, reorder them, and manipulate the blending modes and opacity to create a new image.

Silver is both non-destructive and non-linear, so that the filters, edits, and adjustments can be added and used in any order, and can be reversed. Once you find a combination of tweaks, textures, and layers that you like, you can save that as a "look", which you can then easily use on another photo, or even share with friends.

The free version of the app comes with "40 free effects filters and almost 40 free textures", but, like with so many other iPhone apps, you pay if you want more than that. And, perhaps most saddeningly, if you want access to Cetta's contribution — the Matthew Cetta Alchemy Pack — that's an extra $0.99 you'll have to drop.