Making a concept sketch was really useful. I was going for something a bit weird. I kept a lot of the design, including the small, circular spider eyes on top of the “head”; the peculiar navigation flippers in the front; and of course the four legs with different tools on the ends. I ended up placing the arms/legs under the droid-ship, and made them collapsible.

I’m in the middle of a new animation, by the way. It’s looking promising.

I made the graphic above in GIMP, which is the free and open-source alternative to the Adobe family’s $10-a-month-minimum-subscription PhotoShop. Love the idea of a free alternative, but I find it completely counter-intuitive and clunky. I could have made a superior graphic in PS in 3 minutes. It took me over 20 to hammer out the super simple result above. My fonts aren’t even the same size!

Since switching to Linux, I’ve had to adapt to a new operating system. Hardly a problem there. I use Libre Office instead of Microsoft Office. A bit frustrating at times, but there’s nothing I couldn’t figure out, and I use styles, tables, graphs, and formulas. But GIMP?! Holy Crap! I need to go online to figure out the simplest procedure imaginable. It’s as if rather than go with what would be the most intuitive or efficient procedures, the good makers of GIMP made a point of not using any of the wheel Adobe had already invented.

It’s probably commendable that they tried to rethink what photo-editing software is, and if one started with GIMP it might be alright. But if you are coming from Photoshop, and you’ve mastered the program, you will find yourself painfully learning to crawl again, and speak your first undecipherable words. My level of photo-editing is now goo-goo.

It’s like getting a new car, and, well, let’s just start it up and take it out for a test run. But wait, where’s the ignition? Is it in the steering wheel column, then? No. Is it on the floor? Under the seat? Ah, right, of course, the side door panel. Nope. Under the sun visor?! No. Let me look in the manual on page 256, section B, item 6. Of course, it’s in a compartment in the outside rear view mirror. Just roll down the window, open it, turn the key, and I’m ready to go. How do you roll down the window?

Think I’m exaggerating? I typed up some text on a couple different layers, and I wanted to move them together. In PS you hold shift and click both layers. Simple. OK, that doesn’t work. Right click? Middle click? Layers drop down menu? No. Edit menu?! No. Let me go online to find out ….

You select the “windows” tab, and “dockable dialogues” and then “layers”. Next you place your cursor between the eye icon and the text of the layer, and a chain icon appears. Voila! Only the chain icon doesn’t appear no matter where I put my cursor. I can’t even link two layers.

Well, I guess I’ll go old school, like 20 years ago, and make a guideline and drag each layer independently. Every time I try to move a text layer I end up moving the background layer. What the F!! Well, if I click on the edge of the bounding box? Nope. Turns out if you click on a transparent area, it clicks on the next opaque layer further down in your layer stack. If you hold shift and click, you can move the actual layer. OK, I can handle that.

Can I get rid of the stinking marching ants showing a selection? How do I de-select? Escape? No. Hit return to commit the action. No? Click outside of the selection? No. Select a different tool? No. Select a different layer? Nope. Better go to the “select” drop down menu. OK, it’s “shift+ctrl+a”. 3 keys just to deselect. C’mon. But it doesn’t work. Finally I zoom out using not the scroll mouse, but ctrl+scroll mouse, and that gets rid of it.

Using GIMP is like trying to learn PS the first time, a quarter century ago, but with amnesia, a concussion, a hangover, and while listening to a public service announcement. I don’t have a choice for the time being, so I guess I’ll have to keep giving it a chance. If I were using GIMP on Windows, and I had Photoshop to fall back on, I would have definitely abandoned GIMP.

~ Ends

7 replies on “Concept and Realization + I detest GIMP

  1. Eric
    I think the heat is getting to you. Those days laying out
    on the beach soaking up the rays. Plenty of ice here to
    cool you off. Getting it to the other side of the Earth is
    the problem. Getting me to the equatorial region is a
    problem. GIMP, ya that can be an irritant as well. I use it
    on both win ten and raspi rasbian machines. inkscape
    is also on all the systems. GIMP gets the job done but
    afterward I’m sore from all the arm wrestling it takes.
    I mean to read the manual, someday….maybe tomorrow.
    There’s time now since political rants take up less of it.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Good call on gimp, clunky to say the least. but it could just be me!
    I lost all keyboard short cuts on PS6 (the last PS you could buy) last week. lost my flow, to say the least. Got it fixed in 30 mins but it reminded me of how painful learning to work in another program is. i dread the day that cs6 and or windows 10 are murdered for the sake of profits and i have to find a new program and or OS.
    I use Libre Office too, no probs there.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The OS isn’t bad. I prefer Linux. It’s much simpler to use, except when you have to type code in the terminal. Windows is enormously bloated.

      But I’m having a lot of problems with Linux. I can’t change the brightness because the slider is mysteriously missing. Looked it up on the internet. A common problem. Well, you just type in some code. Ah, didn’t work. Next you go to another level of geekdom that is beyond my ability.

      I’m probably going to go back to Windows and Photoshop when my local computer shop comes out of lockdown. Much as I detest Microsoft and Adobe, and I love the idea of free and open source programs and OS, for all practical purposes, my computer handled the bloat of Windows without a hitch, and access to PS and other proprietary programs made my system a superior tool for my ends.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. “Using GIMP is like trying to learn PS the first time, a quarter century ago, but with amnesia, a concussion, a hangover, and while listening to a public service announcement.”

    – Totally agree. Have you tried PaintShop Pro Ultimate by Corel? My windows with Photoshop crashed last year so I had to find an alternative which was comparable to PS without having to pay monthly. I use GIMP on occasion. It’s the only thing I have on my laptop which is running on Ubuntu.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Caeli. Well, I had to go back to using Windows because my Ubuntu wouldn’t even start up one fine day. So, now I’m using Photoshop again. I know PS like the back of my hand, so, I guess that worked out for the better.

      I haven’t tried PaintShop Pro yet. Thanks for the tip.

      Liked by 1 person

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