Note: This review covers v3.6 of the software, which
is now in v5.0. There is no longer a trial version of this
If you like to play around with your photos, Caricature Studio
was made for you. Import practically any digital image into this
program and tweak away–Warp, Twirl, and Putty tools let you
stretch and distort your target’s features at will. You can even
create chroma-key effects–meaning that if you shoot your subject
in front of a neutral backdrop, Caricature Studio lets you swap in
all sorts of wacky backgrounds. (You could also use one of your own
photos, of course.)
In addition to morphing tools, Caricature Studio provides a bevy
of filters and effects like Sepia, Posterize, Comic, and more. Edge
effects include Fade and Bevel, plus several different frames. The
program also lets you adjust the overall hue, brightness and
contrast, and sharpness.
It is important to read through the tutorial (in the Help menu)
before getting started. Although all the tools are labeled, it’s
not obvious how to use them correctly. Once you’ve read the
tutorial, however, you should find the program easy to use.
A couple of caveats: In my tests, I needed to make Warp, Twirl,
and Putty changes before applying a global effect like Comic–the
tools didn’t seem to work on images that had filters or effects
applied (this may have been an anomaly on my system, however).
Also, the Undo tool works for one change only; I ended up reverting
to my original image several times to undo effects.
Anyone with even a passing knowledge of image editing should be
up and running with Caricature Studio within the 7-day trial
period. Although this version is fully functional, you cannot save
or print your masterpieces.
After playing with this toy for a week, many folks will likely
want to pony up the $20 to keep going.