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Boris Continuum

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Clouds and Stars are a bit more straightforward. Actually, I wasn't a big fan of the Clouds filter at first, owing to the first impression I got of the presets, but tweaking the scale o the clouds themselves helped a lot. At the preset level, the clouds generated appear similar to those you'd find in the standard Cloud filter in Photoshop. But crank up the scale in Boris and set the things in motion, and some fairly impressive images begin to form. In this one particular case, I'd have liked to have seen more cloud styles, such as thunderheads, or at least some lighting options to create rain clouds. The Stars filter provides more options, such as depth and multiple layers to produce star fields that move at staggered rates. It also provides an option for galaxies, which can also be adjusted for size, opacity, etc. The stars, which actually look pretty nice at the factory preset level, can also be adjusted to move toward or away from the camera or side to side at any angle.

Compositing and such
Boris Continuum is packaged primarily as a tool for generating natural effects, but it adds a bit more as well—particularly in the area of 3D, but in a few other areas as well, such as blending and particles.
It also includes one transition effect—Burnt Film—for a Ponderosa-style effect that burns a whole in a layer from the center out to reveal whatever's hidden underneath.

The blending tools include Boost Blend, Composite and Super Blend, all of which provide various levels of layer interaction. Boost Blend provides mixback capabilities in exponential, equal power pos/neg and bias modes. It provides two level sliders for extra blending and a pixel chooser for specifying an area of interest and handling various mask functions for region blending.

The Composite filter has some similar functionality, but it adds 26 "apply" and 26 "apply from" modes (multiply, lighten, screen, etc.), mix behind/mix in front parameters and alpha channel settings for selecting the mix layer, the composite or the original.

Finally, Super Blend offers a vast array of options for affecting layer interaction—up to five layers each with individual settings for separation, opacity, thickness, apply mode and apply mix. It also includes settings for three height maps—for mixing portions of layers as if they were in 3D—with options for source, channel map and reference map. There are also mix and viewer height options.

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