Paint Shop Pro Tutorials

Using Filters/Plug-ins  

Depending on who you talk to some will call these filters while others call them plug-ins either way though they can be a great addition to your Paint Shop Pro. There are many different types out there, both free and paid for. Now the paid for ones often have a free trial version where you can try it out first before buying. Also if you search hard enough on the net you can often find the paid ones out there available for free. I will not be giving any links for these but if you want to look feel free to do so.

Before we get started go ahead and download these two files and  These are two very important dll files that many plug-ins/filters require.  Once you have them downloaded unzip them and place them in your Windows/System directory.  If you're using Windows 7 place them in Windows/System32 directory.

Now go into your PSP files and create a folder called plugins.  Now as you get more and more plugins you may want to add another folder which is fine.  You can point up to 3 folders for PSP to look at for them.

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Telling PSP to use filters/plug-ins

I know it seems silly but you do have to tell it that you want to be able to use them. Click on file and go down to preferences to File Locations. Click on this and you will get a box. Click on the Plug-Ins tab. You want to check off the first 3 boxes at minimum. You can check off all four if need be but I haven't found the 4th necessary. Now the important part is to tell it where to find the plugins. Under file one browse to where you made the plugins folder and choose it. Click ok and you are done.

So now PSP knows where to look for them but you need some to put in there right?  So lets start out with a nice basic set of filters that I personally find I use a lot.  Simple filters, yes the name says a lot but they do come in handy. You can download them here  Unzip the file and place it in your plugins folder.  Now if you have PSP open close it and reopen.  PSP won't recognize a new plugin while it's open.

So now reopen PSP and then open up an image, any image doesn't matter which.  Click on effects and down near the bottom you will see Plug-In Filters 1, mouse over it and you'll find Simple Listed there and when you mouse over it there will be a list of different filters.  Now on the image below Simple Filters is under my listing of 2 but that is just because of how many filters I have.

 Try one of them out.  You can always undo :).  You'll notice when you go back to the list the last filter you used is now listed under User Defined and before Plug-in Filters 1.  As you add more filters they will be added in alphabetically.

Now some filters are just drag and drop like simple filters is while others have install programs.  Some of these will default to Adobe Photoshop and you'll have to change it but occasionally you'll get one that won't install anywhere else.  Don't panic.  If you don't have Adobe Photoshop you can still use them.  Just set up a series of  dummy folders:  the first called Adobe, then one inside of it called Photoshop and  then a final one inside that called plugins.  Then just tell PSP to look there for it as you did above. 

One of my favorite filters is Filters Unlimited.  It is a paid for filter but they do have a trial version.  You can check them out here and download the trial version.  It has a lot of built in effects that I use but also one of the reasons I do like it is many of the drag/drop filters can be imported into it which helps to keep your plug-ins directory from bogging down.  Trust me without it I'd have six rows of them.

Paid for but with free trials: Free Filters/Plug-ins
Flaming Pear, Super Blade Pro, etc Greg's Factory Output vol, 1 and 2 (his site is no longer up). Download both
NVR Bordermania Mura's Seamless Filters
  DSB Flux (they are also out so you can download here)

There are many, many more out there but these are a few to get you started.  Remember to always have fun with it and be ready to just play around.  You can always undo something :)

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