Pros / This software is easy to use, even if you're a beginning scrapbooker.
Cons / CraftArtist does not help you make tangible products like T-shirts, nor does it have a tool for adding video and audio clips.
Verdict / Though it lacks a few multimedia tools, this is excellent scrapbooking software that you can learn to use in a short time.
Editor's Note: DaisyTrail, the company that owns CraftArtist 2 Professional, has closed. The product is no longer available.
CraftArtist from Serif is a full-featured and fun digital scrapbooking software solution that will have you creating amazing scrapbook projects in minutes. The software is designed to help users of all experience levels compose professional-looking projects. This software guides you every step of the way. With its assortment of blending, stenciling and other scrapbooking tools, it is easy to turn your project into a beautiful work of art.
CraftArtist is packed with photo-realistic elements – backgrounds, fonts, frames, brushes and all kinds of scrap embellishments. Unique features of this digital scrapbooking software include the customizable brushes, the paper-punch tool and numerous scissor edges to choose from. The brushes allow you to add stitches, ribbon and other stamp-like effects to your design. The text editor makes it easy to put text on a curved path, and the software checks your spelling. The software also has a pretty hefty photo editor that allows you to correct the colors, fix red eye, add special effects and enhance your images. There are also stencils and a blending tool. When you design, you can use the included elements or import elements from other sources.
This software is not your best bet for multimedia. If you like to add video clips and music to your photos to make a slideshow, this is not going to facilitate any of that. It is an excellent tool for making attractive scrapbooks, though, especially if you are picky about getting the photos edited exactly to your liking without switching programs.
We had professional in-house designers look at the kits included with CraftArtist as well as the ones that are accessible through its online marketplace. The designers were impressed and gave CraftArtist the third highest score out of all products in our digital scrapbooking software review.
You can share your work in various ways with this software. It lets you print it, email it or upload it to the internet. An interesting social component of the software is the online community it works with, DaisyTrail. On DaisyTrail, you upload your favorite digital scrapbook pages and a community of users can view and comment on them. This is also a way to share your designs with friends and family. You can also convert your projects to several different formats, including JPG, PNG, BMP and PDF.
CraftArtist allows you to move at your own pace. You can use a wizard to lead you through the process step by step or get to know the tools on your own. You have the choice of using a predesigned layout, opening a saved project or beginning with a blank page. It also gives you the option of watching video tutorials before you get down to designing anything. The software uses a drag-and-drop interface that's intuitive and accessible.
We had very few problems figuring out how to use the features and navigate the menus in CraftArtist. This software is laid out in a simple, logical way. We were able to start designing pages within minutes. Video tutorials are one way to get started, and the wizard and auto-place features make it especially easy to use, even if you have never made an electronic scrapbook before. One failing is that photos do not snap into place in the target frame as easily as they do with other programs. We had to do more clicking and dragging to get our images situated in their digital frames than with competitors. Also, the downloading process was slower with CraftArtist when compared with others.
This software includes built-in tutorials that are easier to find than tutorials on many competing software programs we tried. If the tutorials and in-software helps don't answer your questions, the online community is available for support and suggestions. Serif also offers telephone and email support if all else fails.
Although CraftArtist lacks the ability to add video and audio clips, and is a little slow to download, it is excellent digital scrapbooking software. It comes with beautiful templates and embellishments and offers access to hundreds more through its association with DaisyTrail. All of the practical tools are there as well, from a spell-check to a respectable photo editor. With its handy features and logical interface, CraftArtist makes it easy to create digital works of art.
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