Products | Features | Sales | What's New | Download | Support | Tutorials | Newsletter | DOTM | About - Home

Howler vs. Artist

Should you go all the way with PD Howler, or settle for PD Artist?
What might you miss?
What are the differences?


If you are considering to buy Project Dogwaffle, you'll soon discover that there are at least 2 choices:

What's the difference?


The Artist edition is cheaper. It is intentionally priced lower so as to allow you to get in on the fun even when you're on a very tight budget. Mind you, Howler is not terribly expensive either, but still.

The Artist edition can be around half of the cost of Howler. It's also therefore a choice to consider if you never ever work with animations. But there are other things to consider. Animated filters can also be sued for things other than creating animations. You might want to find a perfect level of a filter's parameters byt scrubbing through keyframed values and render the filter on the same image, so as to compare.


What do they have in common?

PD Artist is a subset of PD Howler.

We develop first and foremost on Howler. Then we release Artist too, but less frequently.

Both Howler and Artist have about the same tools for painting, including many types of brushes, custom image-based brushes, animated brushes, particle brushes too. When it comes to painting, both are pretty much identical. Of course if we really dig deep to explore each and every little details, we might find something that only Howler has. But nothing comes to mind, when looking at just the paint tools and brushes.

If you only paint on a still image that is. With Howler, you can paint with animations across animations (video on video).

Animation & Video

The primary difference between Artist and Howler editions is that Howler also includes tools for animation and working with video clips.

You can create animations, save to image sequences, AVI files, mpeg4 media...

There are tools for fixing video frams, and motion estimated interpolation.

Most filters support animation, i.e. they can render on a single frame (the one and only image in PD Artist), but Howler's filters can also render across the frames of an animation. Some filters apply the same to all frames, others even have changing features across the timeline. You can keyframe the parameters of the filters. Very powerful stuff.

In Howler, there is an Animation menu which you won't find in Artist.


As mentioned, there are differences in what the filters can do. Howler can render across animations, because it can create and manage animations. But there's more. The Timeline editor lets you render many filters with keyframed parameters.

Another important feature is that Howler has an extra category of filters: Animated filters. There are some filters in Howler which only make sense to be used across animations, such as the Motion Prediction module for motion estimated interpolation.

But there are also some filters that could be cool even for a single-frame still image, for PD Artist. For example, the Tunnel. And Neutrons. But we reserve it for use in Howler. How many are there? Probably around 20 filters. Some of them simple, others very big. The Particle Modeler for example.

Other features

There are a few extras, other tools, perhaps under another submenu, which only appears on Howler. For example, there is a tool for lipsyncing, the exposure sheet, and it has a frame painter. The Frame painter is now also accessible by itself, but still, it needs animation to be of us.


There is more documentation for Howler, more tutorials, videos etc... But of course, a lot of it applies to PD Artist just the same.  It's just that you'll have to ignore the steps on animation, or some filters, which only come in animated form, thus only in Howler.


Updates are more frequent with the Howler edition. Dan writes the code first for Howler. Every once in a while, he'll then take it and build a subset of it, stripped down of the essentials (animation and some animated filters). This then becomes PD Artist.

Conclusions and Recommendations

If you can afford it, go with Howler.
If you can only afford Artist, or you really don't care about these extras, consider starting with Artist edition. You can upgrade later, at 50% discount, if you want to.

Learn more about Howler here

Learn more about Artist here