Create Custom Styles

Have a filter idea? Don’t wait for us to upload new effects (which we regularly do). Now you can also create your own filter styles with Painnt!

Creating a new filter: the process

Creating a new effect requires a huge amount of computing, something that — if done on your phone — would take a looong time! So we let you use our GPU farm (a collection of very powerful computers) to create new effects. Still, it will take a few hours for your effect to be ready. Since the creation is done in the cloud, you can turn off your phone or use it for other tasks safely while creating custom styles.

First off, be sure to have already downloaded the image you’d like to replicate into a filter on your device. Please take care to only use images that you have the copyright to, or are allowed for public usage (royalty free).

Creating a new filter: the theory

Why a style needs a few hours to be created? An effect is actually a “neural network”, a model of how our brains work. Initially the model is empty and doesn’t know anything about your particular effect. So the process of creating an effect is actually that the model is learning the style in your image. This is achieved by training the effect: basically, showing thousands of image samples to the model and telling it how it should look like with your particular effect applied. Once trained, the model can later be applied to your photos. This process can take several hours to finish, so please be patient! The results will be well worth it.

Choosing a style

You will see that different styles are “learned” better than others. This is because the neural network reacts differently to different styles, and so you need to be careful on which kind of images you select for potential styles. For example, imagine that we choose this image as style:

Now let’s take three images to filter with the above style:

And after filtering they look like:

As you can see, the style wasn’t really learned well: mostly the colors where changed to match the style’s darker look, but not much else. The problem is that the style doesn’t have clear patterns or structures that can be learned easily by the neural network. When you choose style you need to evaluate if it has features (little patterns and shapes) which are clear and sharp enough for the neural network. Let’s try another style:

On the left you see the style, on the right the images filtered. This time the style was learned much better! This is because the patterns and shapes are much clear and easy to distinguish. Let’s try another:

This style was also learned well. In particular you can see that in the original owl style, the background in beige was learned well in the neural network and it was used to substitute the solid backgrounds in the test images. The owl feathers were used to filter the image shapes in the foreground, so the result look awesome.

Creating great filters depend on your ability to choose styles that can be learned well by the neural network, and it’s currently really an art! Good luck! Please contact us at contact @ for concerns and tips.

Create Custom Styles for Android

Select category Custom styles (scroll down either from the Home screen or the left panel menu). In this screen you will see a plus (‘+’) button in the bottom right corner, this is the Add style button:

No styles added! (yet…)

You will need to be logged in to use this feature, if you don’t have an account you will be prompted to create one. When you tap the Add style button you will see a dialog to select the image that you will use to create a new filter. Remember to avoid using copyrighted images, as this may cause your style to be rejected. After the selection you can crop the image and then this screen will show up:

Enter the name of your style here, for example “Fractality”

You need to give a name to your effect (make it meaningful for the selected image, based on the colors, textures and source). Write the title and then tap the Ready button in the top corner (✓).

Now the effect will be sent to a queue of styles to be processed in our server farm. It may take some time to start working on your image so please be patient.

Just waiting here…

When our servers starts processing your style you will see that the progress circle in the card will start showing the training percentage. When your new effect is finished it will be available for you to use it as any other effect in the app.

My new effect! (definitely not my best one)

If you think that your new effect is a big hit and all the people will love it, select the Share style option inside the three dots menu () on the effect card and we will review it. If we approve your effect it will show up in the “Shared styles” category.

I think I will share it…

In the menu you can also Remove the effect if you don’t like it or Cancel it if it’s not finished.

Take into account that there is a limit on the number of effects you can train in parallel. Remember to select stylish images following the tips we discussed at the beginning of this page to generate a great effect!

Create Custom Styles for iOS

Open Painnt and on the Home Screen, scroll down past the Community bar, where you will find the “Custom styles” category.

Next, click on the Add style button.

Now you will be taken to your Camera roll, where you can select the image that you will use to create a new filter.

Our app will then train a “model” from your image in order to apply it to other photographs. This process is lengthy but only needs to be done once per style.

Next, you will be asked to choose a name to identify your new style.

Great! Now your style will start to “train” (as shown by the blue arrow on the right below).

This can take a few hours, so feel free to navigate away from the app. If you need to cancel the training, just tap on the blue progress arrow and it will ask you to confirm if you’d like to cancel the process.

You will receive a notification when your new filter is ready to use:

The new custom style will appear showing a preview of what the original image looked like (exemplified here with our new “Meadow” filter).

To use your filter, tap on the thumbnail for the style you’ve just created and select the photo you’d like to apply the style to.

You can now crop or adjust the image if you need to.

The filter will be downloaded to your device and you can adjust the settings in the Preview screen to customize the application of the filter on your photo (just as you would with our default filters in the app library). For a tutorial on how each setting modifies your artwork, click here.

Share your style

Once you’ve created your custom styles, you can choose to share them with other Painnt artists by enabling the “Shared” setting.

When you’re on the Preview screen (after selecting your custom style), scroll to the bottom of the screen and slide the “Shared” toggle to the right.

Slide “Shared” toggle to the right

This will allow other Painnt users to apply your filter to their own images (but it will not give them access to the original image you created the style with, or any of your filtered photos). You can also stop sharing a style at any time, by sliding the toggle back to the left.

Other users’ shared filters will by in the “Shared styles” category.

Delete a custom style

If you’re not happy with any of your styles, you can delete them by tapping on the “See all” button at the top right of your custom styles.

This will take you to the full library of your custom filters. Tap on “Edit” at the top right.

You will see little “x” marks on top of each custom style, which you can tap to delete the style.

I have custom styles, and now I’m being asked to update them.

We’ve done some extensive revamping to our custom-style feature, which allows our users to not only create their own filters, but also share their favorite ones with other artists in the community. To accomplish this, if you already have a few custom-styles you will probably be required to update them to incorporate these tweaks and improvements.

The styles you’ve created that require updating will have a blue arrow in a circle over them, like this one:

Tap on the blue arrow, and the app will start to retrain your style. You will also be notified when it is ready to use.