Vector based program?

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Vector based program?

Postby WingsOfIcarus on Fri Jun 03, 2005 3:34 am

Can anyone suggest a relatively cheap vector based program? I'd like to use one to ink digitally rather than manually as it seems to come out better for quite a lot of webcomic artists I know; but I don't have the funding necessary to fork out
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Postby Dburkhead on Fri Jun 03, 2005 7:04 am

I've played a bit with vectors in Paint Shop Pro 8.0. The current version is 9.0 and it's available in the US at $129. Don't know what the UK price might be.
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Postby Sixguys on Fri Jun 03, 2005 7:09 pm

Inkspace is true vector-based, and it's open source (i.e. free).
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Postby Krytos55 on Sat Jun 04, 2005 10:18 am

sudopodi is another open source vector program
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Postby Sixguys on Sat Jun 04, 2005 10:24 am

I think that's "Sodipodi", and it was used as the core engine of Inkspace. They both use the SVG format, which is based on XML. Supposedly both programs will read each other's files. I haven't tested that first-hand.

What I do like is Inkspace's direct "Export to PNG". Then I open that in GIMP and reduce the colors from 24-bit to 255. Takes time, but good quality.
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Postby Arvo on Mon Jun 27, 2005 2:28 am

I think you guys mean "InkSCAPE" not Ink SPACE :D
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Postby Arvo on Mon Jun 27, 2005 2:30 am

I downloaded Inkscape but haven't really tried to use it yet. Are you even able to use SVG on the net? I don't know if browsers support it yet.

SVG should make a lot of our bitmap problems disappear when it is universally adopted.

How do you like the program?
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Postby Sixguys on Mon Jun 27, 2005 2:43 pm

arvo wrote:I think you guys mean "InkSCAPE" not Ink SPACE :D


Oopsie. I had "Keenspace" vs. "Toonspace" on my mind at the time. To many "spaces"...

I tried the latest version just recently but it wouldn't open my earlier files, so I scrapped it and reinstalled the older version. I sure like the looks of some of those new features.

I think it's pretty powerful, but when I need something with more text capability (and easier-to-use gradients), I just open up Microsoft PowerPoint. Most of my graphics end up in MS Word documents anyway.

(An aside: I'm using PowerPoint for an animated anniversary comic, with a PPT-to-Flash utility.)

For making comics... well, if you've seen my comic I'm not really pushing the boundaries by any means**. But I like it. It's really easy to do the limited stuff I do. And the export-to-PNG lets me set the output resolution. That's good for a webcomic: one resolution for web, another for print, without changing your source. Greg Dean of Real Life (reallifecomics.com) did that for his book; he uses Adobe Illustrator.

** Sidebar: I did redo my title image using Inkscape. Type the text, set a "linked outline", color it, set another, new color, repeat. Much cleaner output than the tool I used before. Those "halo" text effects are fun, but it eats processor time and memory. Plus with the export, it's easier to do two sizes (main and archive) from the same file.

SVG is the problem. Adobe has an I.E. plugin, I believe. We need to get Microsoft to accept it, both in IE and in Office. Then everyone will follow. So far, no one has complained about the PNGs I export from Inkscape. But be careful: using two many alpha-transparency effects (yay alpha!)can make PNGs look bad in IE.

Conclusion: if you've got the time, it doesn't cost you anything to just try it. Experience is the one true teacher. (Or: live and learn.)

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Re: Vector based program?

Postby Cheesie on Tue Jun 28, 2005 9:50 am

WingsOfIcarus wrote:Can anyone suggest a relatively cheap vector based program? I'd like to use one to ink digitally rather than manually as it seems to come out better for quite a lot of webcomic artists I know; but I don't have the funding necessary to fork out
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Postby Madmoonie on Tue Jul 26, 2005 7:32 pm

Freehand is one of the best programs outthere (in my opinion) but not all that cheap, unfortunatly.
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