First of all, our part of the world finally celebrated Christmas (the Orthodox church still believes that Julian calender is more correct than Gregorian one, and while the actual birthday of Jesus Christ may be disputable from the scientific point of view, the fact that they fail to admit that the summer solstice is on June 22 and not on July 6 is simply laughable). So,
merry Christmas tho those who celebrated Christmas Eve yesterday!
During this holiday I am very busy getting familiar with my new basic entertainment tools - MyPaint
for pointing me at Krita - for some reason I paid no attention to that package that I actually had in my system!
After taking brief looks at the three programs (the two mentioned above and the omnipresent GIMP) I decided to try MyPaint first. MyPaint is actually a very good painting tool. It is simple, understandable, and one can find a lot of brushes for it. However, its drawback makes this program virtually unusable for me. It is the absence of any possibilities of manipulations with parts of images. MyPaint is just for painting, it can't even make a selection. And even if you have different parts of a picture on different layers (yes, it does support layers), you can't shift one layer relative to another. And this is (unfortunately) a feature without which I simply can't make a drawing. I tried to paint a picture in MyPaint and I failed - I had to make corrections by shifting parts (I almost always did it in Photoshop).
I then tried to switch between MyPaint and GIMP forth and back. GIMP is sufficiently functional and powerful image manipulation program, so it can shift layers almost as good as Photoshop. Some functions work just like in Photoshop, others work differently. It demands getting used to it. Of course, it is possible to draw and paint in GIMP as well, and I see a large community of GIMP users. But honestly I don't like GIMP interface to such extent that I have problems even with the simplest tasks. I had GIMP installed on my Windows machine for many years, and I failed to get used to it.
So... I started using Krita instead. Unlike GIMP, Krita is not intended for image manipulation, it is intended for painting. But it has sufficient image manipulation functionality (moving, transforming, warping and scaling layers, playing with their opacity, etc.) There is one thing that Krita can't do as Photoshop does. It's impossible to move a selection. A catastrophe? Not at all - you just cut (or copy) the selection and paste it on another layer, than do what you want. So I actually can do everything I need in Krita alone, not switching to GIMP. (Or at least almost everything - see below).
Than a question - why should I switch between Krita and MyPaint? Is MyPaint any better in painting than Krita? I can't tell it for sure, but currently my opinion that it is not. Krita is a great painting tool. When I was switching from Windows to Linux I was afraid that I won't be able to find and adequate replacement for Photoshop. I spent quite a long time trying to get Photoshop working under Wine (eventually, it started working pretty fine, except for the fact that it was unable to get pen pressure data from the tablet driver, what was the fatal fail of my efforts). And what can I say? Certainly, Krita is better for painting than Photoshop. Yes, it is not just a free substitute, it is actually better. Maybe I just have an euphoria, but I believe it is not.
Today after a long hiatus I finally submitted a new drawing.
This picture is the first thing I was able to finish in Linux - it was made in Krita from start to finish, and pretty fast. I didn't notice that I draw in actual size (was about 1400x900) until it was too late to scale it. Normally I draw at much higher resolutions. However, I am satisfied with the quality, and definitely satisfied with the effort-to-result ratio.
I still have to go the long way adjusting Krita to my customs. Fortunately, it got extremely versatile interface. I also plan to set brushes equivalent to what I used in Photoshop. In fact, Krita can easily import GIMP and Photoshop brushes, and you can see my signature on this pic - it is already imported. At first I planned to import all grass brushes by FrostBo
that I used in Photoshop, but after revising his current TOS I decided to refuse from their future use. Not a big deal in comparison with what else I have to do.
I have to admit that finally I had to use GIMP at the very final operation. Krita easily saved the file in its own format (.kra), easily saved it in open raster format (.ora), could save it in Photoshop format (what I didn't want to do), but for some reason it refused to save it in JPEG format as I desired. After two attempts I opened the file in GIMP and exported it as .jpg (GIMP saves only in its native format, but exports into many others).
I can see a community of Krita users and resources that they share. But honestly I have no idea why this community is not that large. Guys, try it! It totally worth it, and it is free (FREE, not stolen, not cracked - it is officially free), and it is available for Windows, too! Besides normal Krita, there are Krita Sketch (for obvious purpose) and Krita Gemini (which can easily switch between normal Krita for desktop and laptop computers and Krita for tablet PCs).#krita #mypaint #gimp