Programming language: Swift
License: MIT License
Tags: Images    
Latest version: v3.1

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TinyCrayon SDK for iOS

A smart and easy-to-use image masking and cutout SDK for mobile apps.

Website platform Compatible CocoaPods Documentation App Store license

TinyCrayon SDK provides tools for adding image cutout and layer mask capabilities to your mobile applications.

Quick Select Tool Hair Brush Tool
Quick Select Tool Hair Brush Tool

Try our sample apps Image Eraser, Color Effect, Focus Effect.

Table of Contents


TinyCrayon SDK provides tools for adding image cutout and layer mask capabilities to your mobile applications.

Image layer mask is a fundamental technique in image manipulations. It allows you to selectively modify the opacity (transparency) of the layer they belong to. This flexibility to define the opacity of different areas of a layer is the basis for more interesting image manipulation techniques such as selective coloring and luminosity masking.

The current version of TinyCrayon SDK provides the following three tools:

  • Quick Select: Smart and easy to use, users just need to select part of the object and the edge detection algorithm will find the boundary.
  • Hair Brush: Smooth and natual looking, paint on the hair/fur of an object and the algorithm will select the hair/fur for you in high quality.
  • Regular Brush: A regular brush tool with the capability to adjust its size, hardness and opacity.


  • No Ads: From 5.0.1 and later versions, ads have been removed from the SDK.
  • UI customization: We are reorganizing the code now and will open source the swift code in the future, you will be able to customize your UI at that time.


  • Free: TinyCrayon SDK is provided under MIT license, you can use it in your commercial applications for free!
  • iPad support: TinyCrayon SDK uses auto layout for its views and adapts to each screen size - iPhone or iPad.
  • Highly customizable: Style the UI, view modes and localized languages as you wish.
  • Swift: Keeping up with time, we chose Swift as the main development language of the TinyCrayon SDK, leading to leaner easier code.
  • Objective-C support: All of our public API is Objective-C compatible.

create as many effects as you can think of



Streamlined, using CocoaPods

TinyCrayon SDK is available via CocoaPods. If you're new to CocoaPods, this Getting Started Guide will help you. CocoaPods is the preferred and simplest way to use the TinyCrayon SDK.

Important: Please make sure that you have a CocoaPods version >= 0.39.0 installed. You can check your version of CocoaPods with pod --version.

Here's what you have to add to your Podfile (if you do not have Podfile, create one in your project root directory):

target 'MyApp' do
  pod 'TinyCrayon'

Then run pod install in your project root directory (same directory as your Podfile).

Open MyApp.xcworkspace and build.

Manually, using the SDK download

If you don't want to use Cocoapods you can still take advantage of the TinyCrayon SDK by importing the frameworks directly.

Download the SDK
  1. Download the TinyCrayon SDK zip (this is a ~20MB file and may take some time).
  2. Unzip the TinyCrayon.zip
Add the framework
  1. Drag TCCore.framework into the Linked Frameworks and Libraries section of your target.
  2. Drag TCMask.framework into the Embedded Binaries section of your target.

Add the framework

Settings for Objective-C

If your project is using Objective-C, set Always Embed Swift Standard Libraries to be YES in your Build Settings.


Add a TCMaskView

The TCMaskView class is responsible to create a UIViewController for the user to mask the image. To present a TCMaskView:


let maskView = TCMaskView(image: image)
maskView.delegate = self
maskView.presentFrom(rootViewController: self, animated: true)


TCMaskView *maskView = [[TCMaskView alloc] initWithImage:image];
maskView.delegate = self;
[maskView presentFromRootViewController:self animated:true];

The delegate of the TCMaskView can be used to be notified when the user cancels or completes the edit. In last case the function tcMaskViewDidComplete(mask:image:) is called.

TCMask class

TCMask is provided by TCMaskViewDelegate functions as the first parameter when the user cancels or completes the edit. For example, when the user completes the edit with TCMaskView:


func tcMaskViewDidComplete(mask: TCMask, image: UIImage) {}


- (void)tcMaskViewDidCompleteWithMask:(TCMask *)mask image:(UIImage *)image {}

TCMask is an encapsulation of image masking result from TCMaskView, it has the following properties:

  • data: An array of 8-bits unsigned char, its length is equal to the number of pixels of the image in TCMaskView. Each element in data represents the mask value.
  • size: The size of mask, which is equal to the size of the image in TCMaskView.

TCMask also provides some simple and easy to use functions to process layer mask with image. For example, to cutout an object:


let outputImage = mask.cutout(image: image, resize: false)


UIImage *outputImage = [mask cutoutWithImage:image resize:false];

To try these examples, and find out about more options please take a look at the Examples.

Further reading


The MIT license

*Note that all licence references and agreements mentioned in the TinyCrayon README section above are relevant to that project's source code only.