Pixelmator Pro 3.6 Archipelago for macOS adds new masking features, more

The Pixelmator Team has released Pixelmator Pro 3.6 Archipelago, an update of its image editor for the Mac.

The Pixelmator Team has released Pixelmator Pro 3.6 Archipelago, an update of its image editor for the Mac. According to the release notes, here’s what’s new:

Pixelmator Pro 3.6 introduces powerful new masking features, including the ability to add masks with a double-click, an AI-powered background masking feature, intuitive on-canvas controls, vector mask support, and a whole lot more.

All-New Masking Experience

Enjoy faster and easier ways to work with masks, thanks to the new and improved masking framework.Easily add masks by simply double-clicking a layer or selection.Conveniently access all mask editing tools right on your screen with the new, intuitive on-canvas controls.Instantly hide backgrounds behind subjects with the power of AI.Use the new vector masks to quickly shape layers and easily create gradient masks.

On-Canvas Mask Controls

Whenever you select or create a new mask, access all mask editing and refining features directly at the bottom of the canvas.Quickly perform basic mask editing tasks, such as inverting, copying, pasting, or adding new masks, or use advanced features to refine mask opacity, density, or edge softness.The on-canvas controls seamlessly switch between bitmap and vector mask editing modes, allowing you to paint on bitmap masks with brushes and quickly access the Shapes browser to swap between different vector shapes.

AI Background Masking

Easily hide the background of a subject in an image with a precise background mask using the powerful AI-powered Hide Background feature.The smart Hide Background algorithm automatically detects a subject and hides the background, carefully preserving fine details like hair or fur.Turn on Hide Background from the new Mask menu at the top of the layers sidebar or choose Format > Mask > Hide Background from the menu bar.Reveal or hide additional areas of the background mask at any time using the handy Paint and Erase brushes at the bottom of the screen.

Vector Mask Support

Enjoy the speed and flexibility of working with vector masks to nondestructively hide or reveal layers using vector shapes.Quickly mask image or video layers, or convert selections into vector masks, by simply double-clicking them with the Arrange tool selected. Hold the Option key to add an inverted mask.Add specific vector mask shapes by choosing them from the Mask menu or freely draw masks directly on the canvas using the Pen or Freeform Pen tools.Create vector masks from existing shape layers by Command-dragging them onto the layers you want to mask. If the shape has a gradient style applied, a gradient mask will be created.Quickly switch between solid color and gradient masks at any time while editing, and adjust gradient settings like type, angle, or direction in the mask settings at the bottom of the screen.Make vector masks editable by double-clicking the mask or pressing the Return key on your keyboard.Adjust the individual points of vector masks just like you would when editing regular shapes, by deleting, moving points, dividing, or joining paths, and more.Export vector masks while preserving vector paths to multiple file formats, including PDF, PSD, SVG, Adobe Illustrator, Illustrator EPS, and Motion.

Other Mask Improvements

Add multiple masks to a single layer and combine them to create complex multi-shape masks.Adjust the opacity, edge softness, and transparency of masks using the new mask settings at the bottom of the screen.Easily control how masks appear together by combining, subtracting, or intersecting them using mask blend modes.Use the new Paint and Erase brushes to edit bitmap masks, without the need to switch between black and white brushes.When painting, use the keyboard shortcut E to switch to erase mode or B to switch back to painting. Hold the Option key to temporarily switch between painting and erasing.Adjust the brush size, softness, and opacity in the brush settings at the bottom of the screen.

Pixelmator Pro 3.6 is available at the Mac App Store. It’s a free update for registered users; for new users the cost is US$49.99. Pixelmator Pro 3.6 requires macOS 10.15 or later. A demo is available on the Pixelmator website.

Dennis Sellers
the authorDennis Sellers
Dennis Sellers is the editor/publisher of Apple World Today. He’s been an “Apple journalist” since 1995 (starting with the first big Apple news site, MacCentral). He loves to read, run, play sports, and watch movies.