Tuesday, February 15th, 2022 Posted by Jim Thacker

Project Dogwaffle team ships Howler 2022.2

Originally posted on 2 June 2021. Scroll down for news of Howler 2022.2 and PD Artist 2022.

The developers of hard-to-classify digital painting, animation and video processing tool Howler have released Howler 2022, the latest version of the software.

The update adds an Analytical Upscale feature for up-resing images and the option to mark images as indelible to survive program restarts, and updates the CLAHE contrast adjustment filter and colour picker.

An idiosyncratic low-cost natural media paint package with a lot of unexpected features
Originally released two decades ago, Howler – originally Project Dogwaffle – is an idiosyncratic sub-$100 digital painting and content creation tool.

Its core strength is natural media painting, but it throws in a number of unexpected feature sets, ranging from terrain generation and particle sculpting to video repair and rotoscoping.

New in Howler 2022: updates to contrast adjustment, noise removal and image upscaling
New features in Howler 2022 include the option to mark images as indelible, meaning that they are automatically reloaded to the dock if the software crashes or is restarted.

The CLAHE (Contrast Limited Adaptive Histogram Equalisation) filter has been updated, as shown above.

Added in the previous update, the filter adjusts contrast locally for separate regions of an image, helping to reduce noise when increasing contrast.

Other changes include the option to use the Color Picker to select any on-screen colour, including from images in the dock as well as the viewport – and even from Howler’s GUI.

The release notes also namecheck an Analytical Upscale feature for up-resing images and a non-local-means filter for “advanced noise removal”, although at the time of writing, neither has its own demo video.

Updated 12 July 2021: Howler 2022.1 is now shipping.

The update overhauls the software’s Media Browser, improving performance when loading previews or resizing the window, and reorganising the categories into which media are divided.

The most recent media list is now remembered between work sessions.

The Brush Shapes panel gets similar changes, improving performance when loading brush thumbnails and making it possible to browse shapes from every category of brushes simultaneously.

Updated 14 February 2022: Howler 2022.2 is now shipping, along with PD Artist 2022, the latest version of the cut-down edition of the software.

New features in Howler 2022.2 include a new Warp Mesh filter (shown above), for grid-based image warping; a new tonemapping tool; and workflow and performance improvements to the Color Picker.

Users also get the option to apply a paper texture as a layer, rather than to the image canvas, making it possible to toggle the texture on and off, or adjust its opacity dynamically.

PD Artist 2022 provides the same natural media painting and image editing capabilities as Howler 2022, but lacks its parent product’s animation and video tools.

Pricing and availability
Howler 2022.2 is available for Windows only. It has an MSRP of $76.99, although the software is usually available at a price of $46.99 or less. The 2022.2 update is free to users of Howler 2022.

PD Artist 2022 has an MSRP of $27.99, but is also currently available at a discount.

Read a full list of new features in Howler 2022.2