Modern Grunge by Appnotix icon

Modern Grunge ($0.99) by Appnotix isn’t an app for everyone, but if you like to make your photos look old and distressed, you’ll want to take a look. The retro photo craze has been going strong for quite a while now, but I’m not going to try to convince you to be into it if you’re just not. If you do like retrofying your photos, read on, because you’re really going to enjoy the level of detail and control in Modern Grunge. This app lets you rip, cut, distress, splotch, scratch, pit, and otherwise age your photos.

Modern Grunge by Appnotix screenshot

First off, you’ll need to choose a photo or take one within the app. I’d recommend reading their detailed tutorial first, accessible by tapping the “i” icon. If you like, you can simply hit the “Change” icon. This is essentially like rolling the dice, you’ll get some kind of random effect. If you want more control, tap “Presets”, for dozens of different options.

Next, try custom ripping your photo by drawing on it with your finger. The “Rip” icon can also be toggled (by tapping) to erase, so you can selectively erase the rips you’ve just made.

Customize your photo further by tapping the “Adjust” icon. Here you can really fine tune everything. Tap “Rip Direction” to choose “Cut-Out” or “Cut-In”, and decide if you want your rip to look like a “Rip”, a defined “Border”, or a smooth “Cut”. Tap “Shadow Vignette” to bring up sliders that adjust the shadow height, shadow strength, and grunge edge. Tap “Grunge Outside” and “Grunge Inside” to show sliders that adjust tone and strength. And finally, tap “Texture” to bring up dozens of choices for textures both inside and outside your rips.

My only complaint is that the app doesn’t easily let you remove your edits. Tapping the “undo” icon removes your rips, but it doesn’t just undo the last step you took. Also, there is no way I could find to get back to your original shot. Yes, you can tap the “Before” icon to SEE your original shot, but you don’t get back to it.

Still, Modern Grunge is a fun app for grunging up and ripping your photos in a variety of ways. I’ve seen grunge apps, but none with the custom ripping feature and sheer variety of aging effects you can add.