Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

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joska
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Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by joska »

I'm trying to do some simple editing to a 256 colour image, nothing more than copying/pasting some blocks around, snapping them to a grid. A quite frustrating experience, all the painters I've tried have completely incomprehensible UI's. Seems like every single developer has had it's own, unique idea on how this should work. E.g. PixArt has tens and tens of confusingly similar icons that really doesn't indicate what they do.

I just want a program that...

a) can work with 8-bit images of arbitrary sizes.
b) has a user-definable grid AND can snap to it.
c) copy and paste functionality that actually works. AND can snap to the grid.
d) ...can work with several images at once, so I can copy and paste between them.
e) can read and write a format that other programs can understand (preferably GIF).

Does something like this exist?
Last edited by joska on Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Falcon pain program with comprehensible UI

Post by calimero »

Apex? Not sure about image dimensions...

Photoline is most “inline” program with today standard.

Papillon is also quite capable.

Take a look at: http://milan.kovac.cc/atari/software/?folder=/GRAPHIC

And choose one ;)
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Re: Falcon pain program with comprehensible UI

Post by joska »

Apex is also a very good example of a confusing UI :) I remember using it some 25 years ago, but when I try it today I'm not able to do ANYTHING with it. I load a 1000x120 pixel GIF, and... what now? I can't even figure out how to modify the palette. Or adjust the grid size? There is an icon "Grid size" but nothing happens when clicking on it. If I right click I get a dialog that asks if I want to display the grid. I select that, and nothing happens. The image is resized to fit the screen when loading, I can't figure out if it can handle larger images.

Sorry for the whining, but so far these fancy painters has been nothing but frustrating. I guess I need a "Falcon DEGAS" :)
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Re: Falcon pain program with comprehensible UI

Post by Playmobil »

Photoshop, but it's for Win and mac ! Hahaha !

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Re: Falcon pain program with comprehensible UI

Post by joska »

...and it seems to be incapable of not messing up the palette. Tried Grafx2 as well, but it won't even start (complaining about missing files).
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Re: Falcon pain program with comprehensible UI

Post by mikro »

Actually Pixart isn't that bad but I totally hear you - I have to re-learn it everytime, too. And before you ask, no, I don't remember already. :D But I use its block functions from time to time for exactly what you describe so it is possible to do for sure. Somehow. ;)

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Re: Falcon pain program with comprehensible UI

Post by calimero »

I just try Papillon and it can do everything you ask.

Probably PhotoLine also but I did not have time to try it...
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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by joska »

Thanks for the suggestion, but I'm afraid I ran into some problems that renders it useless :( It does not work with NVDI, it displays garbage whenever I scroll horizontally, and everytime I try to use copy/paste I get an error message saying it could not empty the clipboard. Maybe a problem with the copy I downloaded? I got it from here: https://milan.kovac.cc/atari/software/d ... PILLON.LZH
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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by JeanMars »

Hi Joska,

Not sure what you mean by:
has a user-definable grid AND can snap to it.
c) copy and paste functionality that actually works. AND can snap to the grid.
Did you try Vision? It can mess-up the palette for a reason: avoid image colors to put desktop colors in a mess, without being able to read text menu for instance..
For this reason, first 16 colors are preserved and so image itself can look weird.
Just use TAB key in this case to switch from image colors to protected mode.

Hope that help,
Jean

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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by joska »

Yes, I did try Vision but I did not understand it. I was not even able to find out how to open an image. File -> Open just showed me a hexdump of the GIF.
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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by calimero »

Yes, that copy.

I just try witn nvdi 4.11 (vectronix version) on Flacon 030 TOS 4.04 and I do not have problems with scroll or copy and paste. Everyrhing works perfectly (including grid).

Try to boot with nvdi only.
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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by JeanMars »

Hi joska,

Vision internal gif handler is probably not able to load this gif.
What you can do:
If zview is installed, vision can use its ldg modules: just edit vision.ini and state the zwiew ldg module path at line zvLDG. Restart vision.
Would you also please post here vision.log and the gif file?
Cheers,
Jean

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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by joska »

Thanks for the hints! Yes, the log says that it can't load the GIF in question (GIF 89 generated by ImageMagick). I set the zvLDG path and now I can load it. However, I can't figure out how to force Vision to not dither it. How do I do that? I'm on a Falcon060 in 256 colour mode.
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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by joska »

calimero wrote:I just try witn nvdi 4.11 (vectronix version) on Flacon 030 TOS 4.04 and I do not have problems with scroll or copy and paste. Everyrhing works perfectly (including grid).

Try to boot with nvdi only.
I'm using NVDI 5.03. Even with only NVDI loaded it crashes during loading. Both in 030 and 060 modes. Without NVDI it mostly works, except that it shows garbage after scrolling. When this has happened I have to reboot to get it working (until next scrolling) again.
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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by joska »

mikro wrote:But I use its block functions from time to time for exactly what you describe so it is possible to do for sure. Somehow. ;)
I guess so, but how? I mark a block, select "Copy". Then switch to the other window/image I want to paste it to, select "Paste" and nothing happens. The only thing I can do is to move it inside the window I copied it from, but as PixArt doesn't seem to be able to change the image/canvas size I have nowhere to paste it...
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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by JeanMars »

Ho joska,

sure this GIF file is 256c? AFAIR, there is some extension to make GIF True Color capable and there is no reason why Vision would dither a 256c image in 256c graphic mode. Also, that would explain why Vision internal GIF module can't load it.
If that is possible, please post this GIF file., vision.log could help me too.

Cheers,
Jean

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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by joska »

Yes, it's a 256 colour image. I'd rather not post it as I prefer to keep this project secret until I know I can pull it off... But there is something about ImageMagick GIF-files that's not handled correctly. I loaded the image in mtPaint on my Linux-box, it says it has a 256 colour palette. I then saved it in mtPaint, and the resulting image can be loaded in Vision without dithering.
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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by JeanMars »

Ah good news :-)
Just to mention that VISION can display a real time zoom window (see Preferences) which can help you position accurately a block into an image about "copy and paste functionality that actually works. AND can snap to the grid".

Hope that helps,
Jean

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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by ThorstenOtto »

joska wrote:it says it has a 256 colour palette. I then saved it in mtPaint, and the resulting image can be loaded in Vision without dithering.
The GIF format has no direct way to specify a truecolor image. But it has the ability to specify multiple frames, and each can have a separate palette. Some programs make use of that, and save truecolor images by generating lots of frames, with a corresponding palette. So in the end, the image can have much more than 256 different colors.

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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by Rustynutt »

To stick my nose in.
Why GIF?
Sure, today for small animations.
JPG can be saved 256 at 100%.
TIF and TGA is best for a lot of Atari softs AIRC.
Both can be uncompressed 256.
Then convert back to GIF.
:wink:

Also, True Image seemed to handle standards well. It's comprehensive, however care must be taken when installing. Drivers for individual image types are loaded as needed, so paths must be set up.

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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by joska »

ThorstenOtto wrote:So in the end, the image can have much more than 256 different colors.
I'm quite sure there's only a single frame in this image. But a quick peek in a hex editor reveals some strange stuff in the palette section of the files Vision struggles with:
Screenshot from 2020-03-23 01-09-26.png
These files are converted to GIF with ImageMagick.

Anyway, I've found a solution so I won't spend more time on this.
Rustynutt wrote:To stick my nose in.
Why GIF?
Two reasons:

1. I'm working with 8 bit indexed images, not truecolour images.
2. I need to be able to convert these to the PixArt file format, because that's what my code understand. And PixArt reads GIF.

So GIF is an intermediate format, all images ends up as PixArt files.
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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by ThorstenOtto »

joska wrote:But a quick peek in a hex editor reveals some strange stuff in the palette section of the files Vision struggles with:
Hard to tell whether that is strange stuff, since you only post the ascii part. If you mean those "ImageMagic" strings etc, that are probably just GIF comments.

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Re: Falcon paint program with comprehensible UI

Post by JeanMars »

Hi joska,

vision.log can tell more, just fake the filename if you want to hide your project scope.
Maybe it's just a VISION's bug preventing a proper parsing of the file.

Cheers,
Jean

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