Combo Apps/Phoetic

Phonetic Deno

Today I’m going to show you how to use Phoetic, I got some requests asking how to operate this app. Phonetic is a really cool app because you write out simple poetry and apply the poem on top of your photo. I think it gives your photo an extra layer of self expression.The top images was edited with Phoetic.

What I did was taken the tutorial from the app, so you have an overview of how the Phoetic operates. Since people were asking me how to use this app.

Phoetic is an app for creating photo word clouds; detailed word clouds in the shape of an image. The typical workflow for creating a photo word cloud is as follows:

1. select an image
2. [optional] crop the image
3. adjust the threshold for the image mask
4. choose a word list, color scheme and font
5. let Phoetic place the words on your image mask
6. save the result

Step 4 can be performed at any time, Phoetic always remembers your last settings. Instead of choosing a photo from your photo library you can also select a template. The template itself is an image mask; steps 2 and 3 are disabled as there is no need to crop or adjust the threshold.

Selecting images and templates:

When Phoetic is started the main screen will appear. Phoetic automatically selects the last image that was added to your photo library. To select a different image tap the ‘select photo’ button on the bottom of the screen. If an image (or template) has been chosen, a preview will be shown and the appropriate tabs will be enabled at the top of the screen. To select a template image tap the ‘select template’ button. If a template is selected the crop and threshold tabs will be disabled.

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Cropping an image:

You can crop the image with a built-in crop tool that can be selected by tapping the ‘crop image’ tab on the top of the screen. Drag the handles or sides to adjust the region to crop to. You can use multiple fingers to quickly select the region of interest. To constrain the aspect ratio tap the ‘aspect ratio’ button on the bottom of the screen and select the desired ratio. Free (default) will remove the constraints and allows you to choose a region freely.

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Adjust threshold mask:

The threshold image mask will determine the shape of your word cloud; words will be placed on the black parts of the mask. Tap the ‘threshold image’ tab to open the threshold tool. The threshold can be adjusted by sliding your finger on screen horizontally. An indicator will appear to show the selected threshold. After a short period of inactivity the indicator will disappear to allow you to better judge the selected threshold. To invert the image mask tap the ‘invert’ button on the bottom of the screen. Generally, an inverted image mask works best with a color scheme that has light foreground colors on a dark background color. A regular image mask works best with a color scheme that has dark foreground colors on a light background.

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Swipe open the settings view from the left.

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Word Lists:

Tap the ‘word list’ section to open the word list selection view. Swipe left or right to browse through the available word lists. To select a different word list, simply tap it. A long press on any word list will enable the deletion mode; the word lists will be grayed out and a ‘deletion’ icon will appear over the word lists. To delete a word list tap the ‘deletion’ icon. A tap anywhere else in the view will disable the deletion mode. A word list can be edited by tapping its ‘edit’ icon . You can add new word lists by tapping the add button .

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Words in a word list should be separated by commas. Tapping the return key after a word will automatically insert a comma and a space. Multiple words without a comma will be grouped and placed on a single line. Some shorter lines can give interesting results, but in general grouping a large number of words should be avoided. It is also possible to group words by placing them below each other by using \n as separator. Phoetic also supports international characters and emoji. If a font is selected that does not support the characters in a word list, Phoetic tries to find a suitable alternative. Please note that emoji are bitmaps and may appear pixelated when scaled up. Tap save to store your word list.

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Tap the ‘Fonts’ section to select the font to use for the word cloud. Swipe left or right to browse through the available fonts. To select a font, just tap it. The font selection will be immediately reflected in the ‘Fonts’ section. Tap on the ‘Custom’ button in the settings navigation bar to view a list of downloaded fonts. A downloaded font can be removed in this view with a swipe gesture.

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Phoetic supports downloading TrueType (.ttf) and OpenType (.otf) files, as well as these files contained in a .zip archive. To download new fonts open your browser and visit a website such as Choose to download your select fonts as a .zip file, press the file icon and select ‘Open in…’ and the Phoetic. A message box will appear showing the number of fonts that were successfully added to Phoetic.

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Color palettes:

Tap the colors section to open the color palette selection view. A color palette consists of a background color and up to four foreground colors. Each words in your word cloud will be rendered in one of the foreground colors. Swipe left or right to browse through the available color palettes.

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Tap to select a color palette. A long press will enable the deletion mode; the color palettes will be grayed out and ‘deletion’ icons will appear. To delete a color palette tap the ‘deletion’ icon. A tap anywhere else in the view will disable the deletion mode. To modify a color palette tap its ‘edit’ icon or add a new color palette by tapping the add button in the settings navigation bar.

To modify a color in a color palette tap the colors at the right of the color palette edit view. Then turn the color wheel to change the hue and use the triangle in the center of the color wheel to adjust the saturation and brightness. To lock a color scheme and change all colors relative to each other tap the lock button at the bottom right. To change the colors individually, tap the button again . Tap save to store the changes to your color palette.

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Words in your word cloud can be placed horizontally, vertically or both. Tap to select the desired orientation.

Advanced Settings:

Use the Advanced Settings section to fine tune the word placement. A tap will open the Advanced Settings view. For beginning users there are three presets to choose from; ‘High’, ‘Med’ and ‘Low’. Select ‘High’ to create detailed photo word clouds. ‘Medium’ is suitable for detailed images using a template. ‘Low’ can be used to create more traditional word clouds with simple shapes. The settings can also be adjusted manually:

spacing between words
Adjust the space between words. Less space will result in more detailed images. More space will decrease the detail but add emphasis on the words.

minimum text size
Adjust the minimum text size to render. Small texts may be unreadable or less visually pleasing, but add more detail to the image.

maximum text size
Adjust the maximum text size to render. Larger texts appear more prominent and variations in size are visually pleasing. However, sometimes it is preferred to have less difference in prominance of the words. In these cases it is desirable to select a smaller maximum text size.

maximum number of words
Adjust the maximum number of words to render. It is usually a better idea to leave this setting to the maximum value and use the other options to adjust the word placement. Decreasing the number of words will speed up the automatic word placement.

Using emoji in your word clouds requires some special considerations. The following settings allow fine tuning the use of emoji:

upscale emoji
Emoji are bitmaps instead of vector images. Emojis that are larger than their original images may appear ‘blocky’. By default Phoetic will not increase the size of emoji beyond that of their original image. Turn this switch on to override the default behavior.

color emoji with palette
Emoji are coloured images. By default Phoetic will present emoji using their original color instead of the chosen color palette. Turn this switch on to override the default behavior and tint the emoji with the chosen colors.

invert emoji colors
When rendering the emoji with the colors from your palette, they may appear inverted in case your palette has a lighter foreground and darker background. Turn this switch on to fix this appearance.

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Word placement:

Tap the ‘place words’ tab to open the ‘place words’ view. By tapping the ‘start’ button Phoetic will start the automatic placement of words and will show a progress bar. Depending on your settings, especially the selected font and number of words, the placement can take a couple of minutes. Phoetic continues processing in the background, so you can browse the web while waiting for the results. Changes in settings will have no effect while the word placement is in progress. To change any setting, first tap the ‘stop’ button , make the desired changes and restart the word placement by tapping the ‘start’ button .

When the word placement is completed a preview of the photo word cloud will be shown and the ‘save’ and ’email’ buttons will be enabled. The result can be saved to your photo library as a .jpeg or .png image or can be emailed as .jpeg, .png or .pdf image. The .pdf is in vector format such that the imaged can be scaled up without becoming blurred or pixelated. This format is preferred for printing at high resolutions. Additionally, if you have set up a twitter account on your device, you can post your photo word cloud on twitter by tapping the twitter icon.

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I really hope that was helpful but I wanted to show what else I did with the top image at the start of this blog post.

Phoetic and DXP Demo

What I did was take the original photo and the Phoetic images and layered/blended them with DXP. It really adds some extra depth to the image.

Flower Phoetic

Here’s another image, where I did the same but I used different blend modes with DXP. I really like applying Phoetic on top of my photo to make philosophical and poetic images. You really have a lot going on with this app and endless creative possibilities. Phoetic sells for $.99 and universal to the iPad. They just had an update and the app works smoothly. The resolution save is 1936 x 1936, so it’s not bad and worth adding to your app collection. If you have any questions, please leave comments or email me Have a great day and see you soon !!!



About ashcroft54

Gallery | This entry was posted in Combo Apps: Mobile Extreme Editing, iPhoneography, Photography and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Combo Apps/Phoetic

  1. Delusional Artist says:

    Seems like a pretty cool app.

  2. It looks like WordFoto but with more controls. Am I right? What is the big difference? Like apps like these.

  3. imapurrson says:

    Phoetic looks intruiqing. I like how you used DXP with the images!

  4. eucalyptha says:

    Looks like a great app. I will sure get it.

  5. Nanashi Satori says:

    Cool … thanks for the walk through … definitely an app worth checking out

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