I found a free plugin to do cutouts-- it was also just updated. From the description, it seems to be the type of plugin supported by XaraXP.
But when I to go do a matte, in the dialog I just get a blank white screen instead of the image I selected to matte. No way to see the edges obviously to highlight any boundries...
Anyone take a shot?
ps- edit - from the help file there's talk about applications not supporting opacity channels... does that include xxp3?
MSU GML Matting User's Guide
Alternative output (for host applications not supporting opacity)Note: this section covers applications that do not support opacity channel. It is inapplicable to applications with full opacity support, such as Adobe Photoshop and Corel Paint Shop Pro.
Normally the plugin requires a layer with opacity channel as input. However, some image editors do not support opacity or do not pass opacity channel to the plugin. In such applications input layer looks like background layer for the plugin, so you get the message asking you to promote background layer:
Figure 1: Error message appearing when layer doesn't have opacity channel
If you can't do this because of limitations of your image editor, you should check Host application doesn't support opacity and click OK. This turns on alternative output mode (the setting is remembered and this dialog no longer appears).
With this mode you can normally work with the plugin. When you finish and press OK button to store the result the following dialog appears:
Figure 2: Selecting alternative output
First option allows you to store alpha (opacity) channel as grayscale image.
Second option allows you to store foreground color channel. It differs from original image in semi-transparent areas. In such areas foreground image contains no background color, while in source image foreground color is mixed with background color (mixing coefficient is exactly the opacity value).
Third option allows you to store a composite on fixed color - the one you selected in Display combo box (see Interface).
Regardless of what you select in this dialog and whether you press OK or Cancel, matted image is saved into temporary file (GMLMatting.tmp in your TEMP folder). If you invoke the plugin on another image of the same size, you will be questioned whether you want to store another channel from previous image you worked on, or work on new image. If you press Yes, the dialog from figure 2 appears and you can store another channel from previous session. This allows you to store alpha channel into one image, and foreground channel into another image (for example to create a composite later using another image-editing application). In this case Composite option creates a composite using current image as background, not constant color.
Thus, do the following steps to create a composite using arbitrary background:
Apply GML Matting to your image.
Matte the image and click OK.
Select any channel or just click Cancel.
Open your background image in the same application. The image must have the same size as the source image (use Resize functionality of your application if necessary).
Invoke GML Matting and click Yes confirming that you want to store another channel.
Select the third option (Composite). Click OK.
This will create composite of your source image onto new background.
Note: if your application supports opacity but does not pass it to the plugin you should also use alternative output. One of such applications is Serif PhotoPlus. See notes on this application in Compatibility notes section.
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