Software Review: Seashore

20 04 2006

When it comes to Graphics, its obvious the Mac is well suited, however there was one aspect of this which I felt it fell short on – basic image editing. In Windows, there is a little utility which is called Paint. This is a very simple, but extremely useful application, for basic image manipulation, at the pixel level.

On the Mac, there is no pre-installed equivalent, unless you have purchased AppleWorks, which has something similar built in.

Now why not just use Photoshop? Or even the GIMP? Well these applications are a little large and also a bit 'overkill' for some of my needs. Plus Photoshop is very expensive. If you are just wanting a lightweight image editor to knock up a few graphics for a website, or to alter the background transparency of a GIF or so on, you probably don't need Photoshop or the GIMP.

The alternative is called Seashore. It is an open-source image editor written in Cocoa and supports multiple layers, alpha channel editing, textures and gradients as well as anti-aliasing:

Seashore Screenshot

Currently the project is in development, but the version I downloaded to try out (version 0.1.8) hasn't crashed once, and is very quick. Even better, it is in Univeral Binary format, so runs natively on Intel Macs. Seashore is built around the familiar GIMP technology and can also use the same native file format.Compared directly to MS Paint, Seashore gives you much much more, but it isn't as big and bulky as Photoshop, and doesn't have the associated price tag either.

In short, it is exactly what I was looking for to fill the gap left by Paint when I switched to the Mac, but it also expands upon the features provided by Paint, so I get more functionality too. Excellent stuff!

Developer: Mark Pazolli
System Requirements: Mac OS X 10.3 or later (Universal)
Download Link:
(4.0MB disk image)




2 responses

20 04 2006

I have downloaded it as well but have yet to really play with it. I was after something like Irfanview (on the Win) for the Mac, something I could open a directory of images with and view easily and make some small adjustments with. Seashore is different and I will try to spend some time with it soon!

20 04 2006

I’ve never used Irfanview myself, but my main requirement was a program which i could make small changes to images for, say a website and Seashore is perfect for that for one thing. Let me know how you get on with it!

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