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Posts posted by Renzatic

  1. I just got through perusing through a bunch of new videos surrounding this most recent Microsoft hardware event. It's all good stuff. The Surface Pro X looks pretty neat, even if I am still a bit iffy on an Arm based Windows PC running some apps through emulation. The one thing that caught my eye was Adobe's unveiling of Adobe Fresco for Win tablets, complete with a touch-centric interface.

    It's not really the app itself that caught my attention. It's that it's being ported over to Win10 with its touch-centric interface intact that got me excited. Now, I had a Surface Pro 4 for a couple of years, and thought it was a decent machine. Decent, mind. Not grand. The one thing that kept me from absolutely loving it is that traditional desktop applications, which make up the vast majority of apps on a Windows tablet are, to put it mildly, clumsy as hell when using a touch interface. It just wasn't fun at all.

    Now given that Adobe is now tooling their software around the touch nature of the Surface line somewhat, including rumors of them maybe possibly bringing Photoshop's up and coming iPad interface to Windows PCs here in the not too distant future, wouldn't it be wise for Serif to possibly attempt the same? I know you all use Surfaces devices in your offices. I've seen the videos. Don't you think it'd be wise to take full advantage of what the Surfaces, and by extension all the other Windows tablets, have to offer?

  2. 17 hours ago, pekranodon said:

    I don't know how much Affinity relies on DirectX10, but maybe a version that uses DX11 or even OpenGL/Vulkan would make it possible to run the software on Wine. That could be a real thing ...

    If I had to take an uneducated stab at a guess, I'd say that the Affinity programs lean heavily on the Direct2D API, which, last I heard, has pretty poor support in WINE.

  3. 54 minutes ago, LucasKA said:

    I'm not saying that Serif needs to use those business models, nor even go open source. I'm saying the idea there's no money to be made on Linux is straight garbage, when there are even open source companies making money. There's plenty of proprietary software on Linux that I pay for on a regular basis too.


    There's plenty of money to be made in Linux Land, and yes, there are plenty of proprietary programs out there that sell well on the platform.

    It just may not be a good fit for Serif, at least not right now. Like I said before, the Linux demographic is a pretty specific one. One that may not necessarily be interested in the products Serif offers. They could go for broke, release the Affinity suite, and see how things go, but Serif is a pretty small outfit, and the cost they'll sink in porting their software might end up putting the health of the company at risk.

    Think of their current stance less as "we don't think Linux is worth it", and more "it's currently too much of a gamble for us to take at the moment." If they were stating the former, I'd argue against it. There's ton of potential in Linux. The latter? There's not much I can say to counter that. It's not that they don't want to try, it's that they only have so many resources at their disposal, and they'd rather put them towards what they've already got established, rather than stretching themselves too thin. 

  4. 6 hours ago, msdobrescu said:

    Since last two biannual big releases of Windows, when they have broke the hardware virtualisation on my board and Windows can't boot anymore until I disable it in BIOS, I think thoroughly if I need a long session under Windows, in order to go through the pain of setting it in BIOS forth and back, just to process my photos in PS. So, my dream is to get rid of Windows. Can't tell you how long it took to figure out the source of the problem... The VM is a must on my PC lately, you know... (for second Linux KDE development, that became amazingly easy lately).

    In theory, you could forego your Windows partition entirely by using a VM in Linux with GPU passthrough enabled.

    Given your general knowledge, you've probably already heard of this, and are well aware of the benefits and pitfalls it entails. But if on some small chance you haven't, it's a way to allow a VM to take exclusive access to an GPU, rather than emulating one, providing massive, nearly native gains in performance equivalent to the output you'd see in Windows proper. The downsides are that you need a machine with 2 GPUs, one to dedicate to the native OS, and one to the VM, and that it can be a pain in the butt to set up properly.

    If you're that set on wanting to leave Windows, it is a viable option. A rather complicated, somewhat extreme one, but an option nonetheless.

  5. 5 minutes ago, msdobrescu said:

    Don't get me wrong, Blender is fantastic! And deserves more! But the funds are subject to taxes, even though non-profit or donated. Development costs too, to name just the power and the computers. 5 guys, but not much money for the value they provide. And they feed a lot of good add-on provides too.

    I vaguely recall one of the developers stating that he doesn't make as much working for Blender as he would elsewhere in the industry. It's primarily a passion project for everyone there. They're all there because they love the job, and it makes for great resume padding.

    With that said, I don't think any of them are suffering too much. At the very least, I expect they get fed 3 meals a day plus snacks.

  6. 20 minutes ago, msdobrescu said:

    That Blender fund is tiny and probably wouldn't cover the c osts of development if they'd need to make a leaving from that.

    It's not what you'd expect from a massive company, but the Blender Foundation is a non-profit, managed by one of the employed developers, and they currently only have 5 team members.

    You wouldn't expect them to do all that much, given how bare bones it is, but over the last year, they've made massive, MASSIVE gains, enough to garner fairly widespread attention to the program. Those 5 guys are apparently really good at what they do.

  7. 1 hour ago, LucasKA said:

    We are back to chicken/egg. Serif already supports Windows/Mac, so anyone jumping ship would just be cannibalizing their own user base that pays them. Not a huge incentive on that, IMO.

    There is a contingent, both of people IN the Linux world and right on the fence.

    Given that they'd have to require people wanting to opt in on Linux to buy another license to cover the costs of the port, cannibalizing their own user base probably wouldn't be much of a concern there, since it wouldn't equate to a sell lost to allow some of their users to make a lateral move.

     And yes, there are very likely a number of people both in the Linux world, and those waiting for an excuse to jump into Linux who are just looking for an excuse to hand Serif their money. The question is, how large is this demographic? How much money could Serif make off of them? Could they, if they don't make an immediate profit on their hard work, at least get a return on the money sunk porting the software? There are a lot of ifs, ands, and buts surrounding supporting Linux. Tons of maybes, no guarantees.


    The Blender development fund is at $43,000 a month in just sponsorship. They don't have a support business model. Half a million a year in basically grant money?

    Red Hat sells millions of support subscriptions of freely downloadable software.

    I really think a company that serves that edge is going to get handsomely rewarded.

    Just because a specific business model worked spectacularly for those two companies (or a company and a foundation) doesn't necessarily mean it'll work just as well for Serif. Consider the difference between the three. 

    Red Hat is a company that offers 24/7/365 support to other companies that rely on their software to maintain their internal infrastructure. They're as much a service as they are a software vendor, a very high priced one, and they hire hundreds upon hundreds of people to maintain this service for all their clients. Their use of open source code is something of an aside, considering the product they're really selling isn't their software, they give that away, they're selling their help and reliability.

    That's a business model that just wouldn't work for Serif, who offer software that's self contained, and doesn't need to be maintained by highly trained professionals on a daily basis. They couldn't get away with the prices Red Hat charges.

    And Blender? Next to the Linux kernel itself, it's probably THE darling of the FOSS scene. It's a powerful piece of software that attracts tons of talent, has a head developer/manager who's practically on a first name basis with his entire following (hell, I think I might even have said something to Ton at one point), and enjoys massive amounts of mindshare. Blender is in a pretty unique position, and is reaping the benefits of being there.

    Now Serif is slowly and surely gaining a positive reputation for their work, and they obviously have a number of talented coders in their employ, but using a for-profit, closed sourced model to sell licenses for their software probably means that people won't be quite as generous with their money as they are with the Blender Foundation, and taking donations to support further work outside of their usual revenue stream would probably be filled with tons of legal boondoggles, along with potential hits to their reputation if things don't go 100% according to plan at all times.

  8. 55 minutes ago, LucasKA said:

    Wether or not it would would move people to Linux is the wrong question IMO, but rather, does it solve a need that enough Linux users have well enough for people to pay for it, and would that revenue be enough to justify development?


    It should be a consideration, given that Linux's small, specifically inclined userbase is one of the major reasons why Serif doesn't yet consider it worthwhile to port their software. Given that most of the usual Linux crowd doesn't count graphic design as one of their primary concerns (they have GIMP for all their lightweight, just-get-it-done needs), for Serif to flip on their current opinion on the matter, they'd have to see the draw both Linux and the Affinity suite together would have on people.

    Given that there are a goodly number of people sick of Windows 10's forced updates, and occasionally suspect data culling habits, alongside Apple treating the Mac as an aside, something they have to throw a bone to mostly out of obligation, there's reason to look for an alternative, one that Linux could provide. That's something Serif should pay attention to.

  9. 47 minutes ago, LucasKA said:

    What it actually says to me, is that it's not Linux that is the hobbyist software, but that Serifs products are the hobbyist software.

    I'd say Serif's reticence to target Linux is mostly due to that platform being a weak option among their target demographic. They pander mostly to the print, advertisement, web design, and Photography crowds, which are strongest on Macs, have a solid base on Windows, and are almost nonexistent on Linux. The one group that's strong on Linux that the Affinity line might appeal to, the 3D pros and enthusiasts, likely only make up a fractional portion of Serif's entire audience.

    You could say that the major reason why the above mentioned people aren't strong on Linux is due to a lack of a good choice of programs that cater to them there, the chicken and egg argument. It's very possible that Serif releasing the Affinity line could cause a number of people to flock to Linux. I could see how it would appeal to web designers, considering it's a 'nix OS, with all the nice 'nix OS features they know and love, that's built to support coding from the ground up. Being able to do design work there as well would be perfect for them. Straight up digital graphics designers would like it too, since they're usually not all that concerned about the OS, so much as the programs they use. There's a lot of potential for them to make a ton of money on Linux.

    ...but it's all theoretical. It could be a massive success, making them unexpected millions, or it could fall flat on its face, losing them tons of money in an attempt that garners them no extra support. Considering Serif is a pretty small company, already supporting three programs across two platforms, they've probably come to the conclusion that the consequences of failure are just too high for them to take, even for the potential rewards

    It sucks, sure. I'd love to have the Affinity suite on Linux. It'd provide me the perfect excuse to happily abandon Windows were they to do so. But it's obviously not gonna happen anytime soon, so...meh.

  10. On 6/8/2019 at 11:59 AM, SrPx said:

    It's still totally there, also for Blender.

    To be fair, there's really no such thing as an entirely intuitive, easy to pick up and use 3D editor. If you were to take a stark newbie, set them down in front of Max, Maya, Modo, and Blender, and tell them to make a little house in each one, after everything's said and done, they're going to tell you that the experience was like choosing between four different ways of getting punched in the face. They're all pretty esoteric, and not very friendly.

  11. This seems like something I should be able to find the answer to in 5 seconds flat, but I don't seem able to.

    So, here it is: when I'm playing with the stroke pressure settings, is it possible to set it so that I can move the beginning and ending points on the curve independently of each other?

    ...and then I figure out the answer for myself not even 3 seconds after posting this. Just hit alt when you select your vector.

    Nevermind, yall! Thanks for the help anyway!

  12. 4 minutes ago, carl123 said:

    You should find out how they are getting in sooner rather than later and fix it.

    Or one night you're going to wake up to a possum sized axe murderer at the end of your bed

    To get semi-serious for a second, I did find out how that possum managed to get into the basement (nothing dramatic, just one of the grates coming loose from its frame), but explaining that to everyone would've robbed the story of its carefully built suspense.

  13. On 5/3/2019 at 12:32 PM, carl123 said:

    Since I don't have a basement or room for a 550lb safe (seriously, who does?) I guess I will just have to stick to cloud backups


    I've got a basement with more than enough room for a safe that size, but...I...I don't like going down there. It smells musty, and though I have no idea how, sometimes possums manage to get in. Plus, it looks like a set for a snuff film.

    It's a pretty unpleasant place overall. I'd rather just go with my NAS and cloud setup for backing up my data.


    15 minutes ago, Filo63 said:

    Your work is becoming more and more professional.

    Why, thank you. :D

    I've still got a long way to go before I'd say I'm good, though. I'm getting more confident with my strokes, and I'm getting a little better with colors, but I've yet to reach the point where I can just paint something without having a few tutorials to help guide me. I've still got my training wheels on, so to speak.

    15 minutes ago, Filo63 said:

    For the mud you should increase the sheen of the water in some areas. Shots of light and homogeneous areas alternated with drier and craggy areas. Where there is more water the mud reflects more the ambient light.

    I'd love to be able to do something with that level of detail. That's still a bit ahead of me just yet.

    What I was trying to go for was something a little more simple. Like this:


    I got in the same neighborhood, but didn't quite make it. Not bad for a first attempt, though.

  15. I'm gonna call this one of my more interesting failures so far. It didn't turn out at all how I intended it to, but I learned a good bit.

    It was supposed to be mud. Came out more like rock. I think my details were way too broad to be really good for either.



  16. 31 minutes ago, SrPx said:

    VAs tend to get you great deep blacks, if they are as they used to be. In premium models (they are putting now VAs in more mainstream ones, since quite some years) you could find really good VA monitors for photography or anything image. 32"....I really hope you are at a good distance... if not... my gosh, your neck, could be like watching a tennis match !  ;D

    That said, that screen must be gorgeous. :)

    A wet dream of mine:  The 32 inches recent Cintiq Pro... But there's so  many things one can do with +3k bucks....

    For the $400 I spent on it, I wasn't expecting it to be as nice as it is. The specs bragged that it covers 99% of the sRGB range, which, going from my various newbie calibration attempts, it does about live up to that hype. It's not something you'd use for high end color grading, but for my needs, it's just fine. Black levels and contrast are great, which, yeah, you'd expect from a VA panel. It's the major reason why I got it. The only downside to it is that it's just a 60hz display, but...eh, I can live with that.

    As for the size? I upgraded to it from a 24", and it's really not THAT much bigger, at least not as big as you'd think it'd be. From where I sit, which is maybe about 3 1/2 feet away from it, it fills my field of vision a little more, but I don't have to crane my neck around or anything. The only caveat is that, once you get used to it, everything else will look extra tiny in comparison.

    And a 32" Cintiq? That'd be nice, but...it's not for me. Not yet. Maybe one day, but for now, that's way overkill. An 11-16" screen is more than enough for me.

    Which brings me back to the subject at hand. My three choices are:

    iPad Pro: For reasons that Filo laid out above. I can use it anywhere, and drawing on it is just SO nice.

    Cintiq 16: Because it's solid, has a good reputation, and isn't ball bustingly expensive.

    XP-PEN Artist 15.6: Great features, some features that are even nicer than it's Cintiq rival, and an absolute steal for the price, but it's overall quality is an unknown. 

    Fortunately, I've got plenty of time to chew over my options. My final decision is still a couple-few months away, and my itty bitty tablet is doing the job for now.

    1 hour ago, SrPx said:

    If serves as inspiration... I move houses VERY often... and in the past was some times as fast as once per month...got a habit of setting up all quick and cleverly (indeed, so many movings make you minimalist in what stuff to really keep... xD )I always set all the cables in the floor.... Yeah, it's crap for cleaning, but if more or less organized and grouped, a vacuum cleaner is all you need. Anyway, each home is a different puzzle.  I have the large XL, but my monitor is small, 23 ", because I wanted it to be of certain color accuracy, and you know how that makes screens really expensive. Going 27 would have been ideal, but prohibitive, in those specs...

    Honestly, I'm surprised you haven't opted for a nice laptop. That's what I'd do, cuz I hate, HATE messing with wires. They're the bane of my existence! I can't even make a game out of organizing them, because I hate them so bad. It's a chore you have to deal with to get to the fun stuff, and that's it.

    ...so I might end up getting the iPad, cuz, hey, NO WIRES! All I need is a power plug to charge it from, and I can put that anywhere. It doesn't HAVE to be around the computer. And if the iPad ends up getting in my way, I can just take it off the desk, and toss it on the couch.

    Geez. I think I just talked myself into it. My laziness makes me so pragmatic. 

  17. 1 hour ago, SrPx said:

    - So little desktop depth Is it maybe due to having a CRT still? man, change to a LCD, they tend to be more healthy, and there's really good ones now....(you gotta pay attention to specs, and specially, advanced professional reviews (not youtube or general tech reviewers).

    Ha! No. I have a fairly decent, huge ass 32" VA panel with a big base. I could push it farther back on the desk another 6-8 inches, but I'm kept from going even farther due having my long power strip, cables, and other computer necessities all snug and organized back there, AND I have low vaulted ceilings. I'm making it sound all inconvenient, but it has been a pretty comfortable setup up until now. I just have new things to consider.

    Course I could move the monitor to the longer portion of the L. I could push it practically up against the wall there, but (there's always a but) I'd have to redo all my wiring to hide it again. That'd be a...yeah, that's a quest.

    It'd be easier just to get the screen tablet. And yeah, the Cintiq 16 is in the running for consideration. I'm still pretty tempted by that XP-PEN, though...

  18. Sorry for the late reply. I've been kind of busy, and save for tonight, the time I've spent painting has been mostly dedicated to yet more boring drills. Nothing worth gabbing on about here.

    The tablet advice is much, much appreciated, and I'm not entirely opposed to grabbing a Deco 03, but I'm still leaning more towards a good, inexpensive touch screen for a number of reasons. First and foremost, my current drawing setup sucks. I've got my little Wacom snuggled in on one of those slide out keyboard trays below my desk. I can't move it up, because I've got a fairly big monitor. I'd have my face plastered up against it if I drew that way.

    But I do have an L-shaped desk, and the portion along the right side of me barely has anything on it. That's where I usually do my drawing anyway, so it'd be perfect place for a decently sized screen tablet. I could just pivot in my chair anytime I want to paint.

    So anyway, to get back to the original topic at hand. Textures! Yup. I did another one, and it's a...you guess it...ANOTHER WOOD FLOOR! Yeah, maybe I'm starting to get in a rut, but I can do them fairly decently, which is a good boost to the ole self esteem.

    This is an in-editor, because, well, I think they look neat, and I could show off my layer stack for anyone wanting that bit of extra info. I didn't tile this one, because I  didn't feel like using Krita, or hitting up the affine filter over and over again. This round was all about practicing technique.



    Oh, and if anyone wants to know what I doing when I talk about the drills: circles and ovals! Sometimes, if I'm feeling crazy...I'll shade 'em.

    Now if I practiced doing anything else over the years, who knows how far I'd be right now. O_0


  19. Yeah, I have the SMALL Intuos, and it is truly itty bitty. For where I'm at right now, it seems to work well enough. It's definitely better than drawing with a mouse. Though I do tend to zoom out more often than not to do big, sweeping strokes. With a bigger tablet, I probably wouldn't have to futz around so much.

    ...and if I had a tablet that'd let me draw directly on the screen, I wouldn't have to undo my strokes 15 times until it finally lands where I want it to.

    It's funny that you brought up XP-PEN, because after posting my last reply, I started looking at different tablets. It seems they're the best alternative to Wacom for someone who isn't an absolute, cutting edge pro. They're stable, slick, have nice features, and, most importantly, don't cost the earth. This tablet in particular has caught my eye. It's less than half the price of an iPad Pro with a Pencil, and it's just kinda neat overall. Not super fancy, but it seems to do the tablet thing pretty well. I've been looking for an excuse to grab a 2nd monitor for my computer anyway, so this is kinda tempting me.

    But like you said, portability is a nice advantage. I'm not tethered to my study with it. Hmm...

    Now, pen stabilizers. I've turned it on a couple of times, but I didn't want to use it too much out of fear that it'd end up becoming a crutch for me. I figured it'd be better to learn how to draw smooth lines without any assistance, only using the stabilizers as an extra boost here and there. I'll keep a more open mind to them from here on out.

    Oh, and since you brought up Krita. Well, uh...I did cheat a bit, and used it to tile my last wood floor. I know, I know. This is an Affinity board. I shouldn't talk about the competition here. But comeon. It's wraparound mode is an absolute godsend for doing textures. I'd love to see that feature in Photo.

    ...and while we're wishlisting, smoother canvas rotation would be nice too. 

  20. 1 hour ago, SrPx said:

    I handle the wacom now almost as I'd do on paper (and I trained mostly on paper, so..). I'd say the issue, more than the texture of the paper, is the coordination of hand-eye-screen. That's why a ton of people find it easier to use a display-pen (ie, cintiq, or XP-PEN 22, Yiynova, Huion or etc) rather than a pen-tablet. Even with a cintiq or alternative, your hand control is still of much higher "resolution", way less jittery than the best wacom solution today. That's what you notice, and is not your fault. It requires certain long term training with a wacom or similar. The path is shorter with a cintiq or cintiq alternative, as you paint in way more similar to traditional drawing and painting,  but I am in this belief of pen-tablets not only being cheaper, they're in my opinion also healthier (eyesight, back, and neck).  Even more the case with small screens like the Cintiq 13" or ANY iPad Pro. The wonders gained in technology are lost by the small screen.

    Remember you can also activate line smoothing. I don't have an issue now with even accurate, detailed ink line art (in CSP I don't need line smoothing anymore (probably it already averages the line in zero value)), and if anything, only slight line smoothing (probably matching the only bit needed to compensate the magnetic tablet system. As I've no line shaking at all in paper) when using something like A. Photo or similar.The procedure I lately recommend to all going traditional---> digital is this : Start with heavy line smoothing setting. Practically all important painting software apps do have it today. Then, go forcing yourself into lowering that setting, never past the line where you 'd feel uncomfortable or doing too many "tries" for each line (btw, is a total joy when you don't need the tries anymore). so that you can have more freshness and control over the line. At some point you don't need it that much.

    My biggest problem right now isn't that I have sloppy lines. I'm fairly decent at doing quick strokes, and drawing from the elbow. It's my hand-eye coordination that needs a lot of work. When I'm drawing on paper, I pretty well know where my strokes will go, probably due to the fact that everything is within my field of vision. With a tablet, I've got it down below me, and my eyes are aimed away from it, up towards my monitor. The end result is that I'm all over the place. Things I can easily do on paper, like drawing a random shape, then tracing over it without any huge variances in my strokes, I CANNOT do with a tablet. It annoys me to no end, though I am getting better at it.

    ...slowly and surely.

    There's also the fact that I cheaped out, and opted for the itty bitty Intuos Art. It doesn't bother me much, though I am starting to see how a larger tablet would serve me better. Like if I'm drawing a long line, and I start getting towards the edge. My strokes get shakier the closer I bring my elbow in towards my body. With a larger tablet (and a better all around general setup, honesty), I wouldn't have to worry about that.

    As for screens with what to draw upon, I actually had a Surface Pro 4 up until here recently. It was...eh, alright. I never drew on it much, because desktop applications felt crowded on a screen that small, the pen felt floaty, and the screen would flex inwards when I put pressure on it. In contrast, I tried out an iPad Pro-Apple Pencil combo a little while back, and loved every second of it. The only complaint I had was that drawing on glass feels a little too smooth, but getting a paper texture screen protector like gdenby mentioned above would probably fix that. Moreso than getting a larger Intuos, or opting for a Cintiq, I'm deeply tempted to grab a Pro for myself.


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