Originally posted on 13 November 2017. Scroll down for news of the 11.4 update.
The Project Dogwaffle team has released Howler 11.2, the latest update to its VFX-friendly paint tool – or, as developer Dan Ritchie describes it, its ‘(un) natural paint program’.
The update adds automatic smoothing for hand-drawn brush strokes, adds a new option to shade brush strokes along a colour gradient, and adds a new Warp mode for the Free Transform tool.
New brush stabilisation and post-correction options
Ritchie describes the release as refocusing development on Howler’s brush engine following several 3D-centric updates, including the addition of a new brush stabilisation tool.
There doesn’t seem to be a longer description on the website, but it’s described as automatically smoothing out hand-drawn strokes, presumably in a manner to the equivalent setting in the latest Photoshop update.
In addition, the existing post correction feature, which varies the width of a brush stroke according to a user-determined envelope curve, now also works with the Curve tool.
As well as changing the width of a stroke, it is also now possible to vary its colour along a gradient.
New image warping mode, improved OBJ export
Other features in Howler 11.2 include a new Warp mode for the Free Transform tool.
It enables users to distort image selections my manipulating their corners independently, in a similar way to Gimp’s Perspective Tool – you don’t get the same range of options as Photoshop’s Warp commands.
The Symmetry options get their own floating panel, shown above, making it easier to switch between modes; and OBJ export now automatically generates a texture map and .mtl file as well as the geometry.
The update also adds a new HSL colour picker, in addition to the RGB-based picker added in Howler 11.
Updated 8 March 2018: Howler 11.2c is out. It’s primarily a bugfix update, but also adds a new high-level instance-based 3D rendering class to the software’s API.
Updated 25 June 2018: Howler 11.3 is out. The update overhauls the adjustable gradient tool, shown in the video above, to improve speed and interactivity when editing gradients in the viewport.
The viewport also now displays a real-time preview of the layer mode selected; and the colour theme system now displays colours as you drag and drop. You can find a full list of changes via the link below.
Updated 27 July 2018: Howler 11.4 is out. The update adds a real-time preview of clone and rubthrough sources and the option to generate a background paper texture for a new document.
There is also a new ‘Find similar’ option when browsing images (above) – like a reverse Google image search, but on your local drives – including options to match images by colour, or by composition.
The UI has also been updated, with the sidebar now displaying the histogram and most-used brushes.
Pricing and availability
Howler 11.4 is available for Windows 7+. The MSRP is $49.99, but at the time of posting, the software is available at a discount.
Read a full list of new features in Howler 11.4 on the product website