There is a simple, yet cool new plug-in that is available over at the Adobe Labs site. It is called Pixel Bender and it is a collection of image altering effects that can yield some rather interesting effects. All of us here at NAPP HQ have all been taken by this simple little feature. Pictured here is a cool example from Dave Cross after he experimented with the oil painting filter. The cool part is that this plug-in is free! Now, does it solve any real world issues? Not necessarily, but it certainly is a lot of fun to play around with.
If you really want to get ambitious you can also download the Pixel Bender Toolkit. Which allows you to create your own filter effects to be used in the plug-in. There is also the Pixel Bender Exchange where you can download filters developed by other users. For such a simple thing, seems like there is a lot going on with it. Click here to learn more and get it now.