Pick. A good home publishing clip art
package can be difficult to find. This software program is a joy
to use. With over 615,000 images to choose from, the software
features GraphicsDesk to allow users to search and then export images to
their own documents.
This image collection includes a
pleasing variety of types of graphics, all royalty-free, including
vector clip art,
raster images, Photo-Objects (these are objects that have been cut
from their original photographic backgrounds), photographs (both
color and black-and-white), animated gifs, textured
web graphics, and more.
Particularly impressive are the
program's search engine and interface. This is the easiest to use
program of this genre that we have reviewed. After performing a
search (by keyword, image type, and category), search results
appear, complete with thumbnails of the images. Users can browse
through the results, and opt to view a larger preview or export an
image after responding to the prompt to place the appropriate CD
in the drive (there are 27 CDs in total). Of course,
disc-swapping with such a large collection of CDs can be cumbersome. Hemera offers a three-month trial
subscription for accessing the program's image collection
online, which would mean no fiddling with discs, at least for a
while. After the trial period, the subscription will start
The images in the collection are
very easy to export.
Double-clicking on an image brings up an Export Wizard that guides
users through the process. When possible, images can be resized
or flipped, and a background color selected, before exporting.
Alternately, images can be copied and then pasted into your own
image composer software, or dragged and dropped into other
This collection is
well-organized. Each image has a number of keywords associated
with it, and our experience with the program suggests that they
are logical and straightforward. The collection includes graphics
and animations designed for web use. These are accessed through
the user's web browser.
Users have the option to install
PhotoFont Maker, an application that allows them to fill fonts
with photographic-quality textures. The results are
intriguing -- we had a good time playing around with the textures.
A Personal Collections
option is very handy. Users can save images to special folders, and then later perform
searches within these folders.
Bonus applications are included
in the package: Greeting Card Creator and T-Shirt
Creator. Both of
these provide users with a number of templates for their crafts. Additionally,
CD Designs Creator
can be downloaded for free on the web, or, for registered users,
can be ordered by mail.
What is missing is a printed
directory of images in the collection. However, thumbnails of the
images are available for browsing on the computer screen.
This program is the Windows
version (Win 95/98/ME/NT 4.0/2000/XP), and is Windows
XP-certified. An edition with fewer images is available (The Big Box of Art
350,000). This program is economical and features the same
The Big Box of Art is also available for the
Macintosh (The Big Box of Art
**For more information,
user reviews, or to buy, see:All "Big Box of Art" Softwareat
All "Big Box of Art" Software
- Especially user-friendly
clip art program.
- Well-organized image
- Excellent search engine.
- Nice variety and range of
graphics, grouped by category and graphics types.
- Good-quality images.
- Beginners will find this
program very easy to use and understand, while the
collection is also appropriate for experienced users.
- No hard copy image