If you have ever wanted to experiment with ChromaKey you might be interested in this free software.  PhotoKey 6 Lite is a basic package which allows you to load in an image shot against a blue or green background and overlay on to a different background

You can download it for free (normally costs $50) from here: https://fxhome.com/photokey/free – but be quick this offer expires TODAY (4th February).  The download process will ask you to tweet or share the link on Facebook before you proceed.  In reality there is nothing stopping you from not clicking the final post button and nothing stopping you from deleting the post or tweet if you really don’t want to endorse a product before you have tried it out.

I downloaded it and gave it a quick try.  For my test I selected two photos one of Laura against a blue background.  Now I must point out that this was not lit for chromakey, the the software did a pretty good job of isolating her from the background.  But it is worth noting that the software only works with blue and green key colours.  I tried a yellow background image and it didn’t work.

Laura Norrey at Vintage/Pin-up Night at Ian's Studio  Harbour boardwalk.

The controls for refining the masking on the foreground are also pretty rudimentary and I couldn’t find any setting that didn’t make Laura foot ever so slightly transparent  When I am keying images like this in photoshop I like to feather the edge just a little it makes the image look slightly less pasted on to the background.  There is no way to achieve this with this software.  What it does have is the ability to colour adjust both background and foreground so that they looks as though they were shot in the same light.

Exporting the image was more of an issue.  I would have liked to have kept the two layers as layers so that I could refine the masking further in photoshop.  This doesn’t appear to be possible.  What is more troubling was the fact that the final exported image has all metadata removed from it.  So captioning, keywording, and most importantly copyright information has all gone.

In summary the results not as good as doing it in photoshop but a lot quicker. I’m guessing that the full (non lite version) will address most of the things lacking from this Lite version.  The product is ok if you need to do a quick masking…and only need to show it a lo-res or screen res, and for that I am happy to pay £0 but I’m not sure I would bother with it at the full price of $50.