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what is a good "paint" program.

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I have been learning to use pygame for a little while and I have kind of find microsoft paint to be a real pain in the but. Can anyone recomend other free programs I could use instead. I have heard of GIMP but not much else.

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GIMP has a lot more of Photoshop's features and Paint.NET is quick and fast and excellent for pixel art (don't take that to mean that is all it does well though), I use it for the majority of my image work.

If you're looking for something to simulate canvas and oil paints and such, ArtRage2 is the most awesome thing since sliced bread (and very cheap too!).

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The three I'd recommend have already been mentioned: Paint.Net, GIMP and Inkscape

Paint.NET is like an improved version of MS Paint, and anyone using Paint should really try this. You'll probably pick this up faster. Its main downside is that its Windows only, so Mac people like me can't use it.

GIMP is the most popular free raster editor. It's got a ton of features and is powerful once you know how to use it. Its main downside is that the interface is counter-intuitive and makes everything harder than it should be (YMMV, but more people seem to think this than not).

Inkscape is a great free SVG vector editor, and my favourite open source app. It is, however, a vector editor, which means you work with shapes rather than individual pixels. The interface is IMO much, much cleaner than the GIMP and its my favourite vector editor (and I'm comparing this to Adobe Illustrator). I've got a tutorial in my sig if you need help getting started with Inkscape.

I'd try all three, as they're good for different things. And they're all free, so unless you're completely strapped for time or download bandwidth there's no reason not to.

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You can find a list of available tools Here. I'm quite fine using MSPaint myself, although i have considered GraphicsGale (or an equivalent) from time to time.

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Here are several lists of image editing programs. You probably want this one.

I must say that I rather like the GIMP's interface. It kind of reminds me of an OO program that has been stretched and refactored a lot. Kind of complicated and tricky, but very flexible.

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Quote:
Original post by Trapper Zoid
Paint.NET is like an improved version of MS Paint, and anyone using Paint should really try this. You'll probably pick this up faster. Its main downside is that its Windows only, so Mac people like me can't use it.

There's always Paintbrush for us, right? LOL.

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Quote:
Original post by Oluseyi
There's always Paintbrush for us, right? LOL.

I didn't know about Paintbrush. Now I can relive the giddy highlights of working with MS Paint [grin]

When it comes to digital doodling, I tend to use Inkscape's calligraphy tool. That might just be a case of me having found my hammer and treating all problems as nails, but Inkscape's calligraphy tool can be made to feel a lot like pencil sketching if tweaked the right way. Plus I can move the scribbles around very easily when done in a vector editor.

However now you've pointed me to Paintbrush I think I'll keep it for those occasions when I need to quickly mark up a digital image to show something in online discussions.

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Original post by Trapper Zoid
When it comes to digital doodling...

Sketchbook Pro 2009 > *

With the price down to $100, there was no reason not to buy it, and it has the best tablet-driven interface for any software, ever. (Okay, I haven't worked with Alias Studio yet...)

I should give Inkscape a legitimate shot one of these days. Might take a look at your tutorial.

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WOW. Thanks for all the suggestions. I only expected a few replies. Ive tried out GIMP. It is not for me. I'm going to try paint.net next then inkscape. Again THANKS EVERYONE.

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Original post by Oluseyi
Sketchbook Pro 2009 > *

With the price down to $100, there was no reason not to buy it, and it has the best tablet-driven interface for any software, ever. (Okay, I haven't worked with Alias Studio yet...)

Interesting. A$150 is within budget if Sketchbook Pro is really intuitive to use, and I should have some time in the next couple of weeks to give the 15 day trial a go.

Quote:
I should give Inkscape a legitimate shot one of these days. Might take a look at your tutorial.

Admittedly the slime drawing one in my link is a bit old, done back when I was still learning some Inkscape tricks myself. I've got a more in-depth tutorial I made for the Order of the Stick webcomic fan community, but it's very... "Order of the Stick-y". I'm hoping to make a lot more tutorials in 2009, including an improved Inkscape one for general audiences.

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I find the GIMP lacking all over the place. Especially the text interface. I downloaded the newest version the other day to try and see if the text was better than my old stand-by PSP7, and was sorely disappointed.

In PSP7 I can create vector text, and give it an outline and a fill, which can be a color, an image, a gradient, and something else I never use. Then I can just pull and rotate it to whatever size I want, and then even change the settings for the outline and fill.

I thought that GIMP would have this and maybe more, like auto beveling or other cool things. Instead, their text is still in the stone age. In order to get an outline, there is a convoluted 16 step tutorial on their page involving layers and all kinds of filters.

Sketchbook looks cool.

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Original post by Daaark
I thought that GIMP would have this and maybe more, like auto beveling or other cool things. Instead, their text is still in the stone age. In order to get an outline, there is a convoluted 16 step tutorial on their page involving layers and all kinds of filters.

That's my issue with the GIMP in a nutshell. You usually can do all the effects that you want to do, but there's some byzantine unintuitive process to get there. Even something as simple as drawing an unfilled rectangle is unintuitive; you need to use the rectangular select tool! I find the choice of tools in the GIMP to be really weird. It's good for simple image cropping or for very simple alterations to images, but I find it too frustrating for any greater tasks.

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Quote:
Original post by Trapper Zoid
Quote:
Original post by Daaark
I thought that GIMP would have this and maybe more, like auto beveling or other cool things. Instead, their text is still in the stone age. In order to get an outline, there is a convoluted 16 step tutorial on their page involving layers and all kinds of filters.
That's my issue with the GIMP in a nutshell.
I'm also not a fan of the interface being split into a ton of little independent windows. When you have several programs opened, it's really a pain finding all the layers of windows this program opens.

A lot of the filters in previous versions puzzled me. It seems a lot of functionality in that program is just about changing the values of the pixels just for the sake of changing the values of those pixels, and not because they have any artistic value or merit. Makes for great programmer art.

You can't draw rectangle, but there's 56 different built in filters to make visually offensive lava, or generate data that makes an image look like a screenshot of an early 90s demo that rotated through the standard vga colors. TAKE THAT PHOTOSHOP! [lol]

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I use GIMP for all my photo editing and pixel graphic tasks, and Inkscape for vector drawing. When I was at school I've used photoshop and photopaint (best program at the time IMHO). I've also tried paint shop pro. I think that gimp is now close to what photoshop was five or six years ago. Ok, the GUI is the worst piece of software ever written (I'm joking) but it offers a lot of features, and the next version should provide a better windowing system and HDR support...

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No offense to the Gimp, which is decently powerful, but the GUI interface was created by someone who has to be clinically retarded. It's the most unintuitive thing ever.

Ultimately, if I have to do image editing, Photoshop has been much better than the free alternatives that I've seen, unfortunately. But there's some good suggestions in this thread that I haven't tried before, so maybe that scenario has changed.

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