design app woes - a moan

Hi,

I was asked to supply the header I used for a website as a graphic for print, fine no problem. Now I don’t do a lot of paper design work but certainly thought a rectangle with rounded corners and two typefaces plus an image would be easy enough, certainly simple for a design program.
I’ve Intaglio, Pixlemator and a trial of Acorn.
How difficult is it for these programs to do these basic things; very it seems.
I hate using Intaglio, its like having a three legged horse, when everyone has a car. A dead in the water program, horrid to use, unlike freeway which i actually enjoy. Intaglio fell when it came to cropping images, a very round about and inadequate method to do so. Acorn was actually better but less than brilliant.
Actually the best program I tried was Pages (which I enjoy using) but alas it can only output at best as a pdf. which is fair enough given what it actually is.

Does anyone have any thoughts on an alternative low cost program that stumps the above ?


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On 19 Apr 2011, at 11:41, seoras wrote:

Does anyone have any thoughts on an alternative low cost program that stumps the above ?

Hi; you say you have Pixelmator, but you don’t say what’s wrong with that? I’d have thought that would have done it easily? Good cropping too!

best wishes,

Paul Bradforth

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Can you show us what the header looks like so we can get an idea of what application may work best for this?
Thanks,
Tim.

On 19 Apr 2011, at 11:41, seoras wrote:

I was asked to supply the header I used for a website as a graphic for print, fine no problem. Now I don’t do a lot of paper design work but certainly thought a rectangle with rounded corners and two typefaces plus an image would be easy enough, certainly simple for a design program.

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Hi,

Pixelmator isn’t a drawing program and to create shapes is a pain; selection>edit>stroke.

Tim; http://www.fopkht.co.uk/index.html (it was a freebie so you should recognise the template).

Just had a go at a program called vectordesigner, that can do a lot with images, various effects etc but not crop.

thanks,

s


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The latest Acorn has resolution independent layers, where you can put and create vector shapes that scale with the document. Just saw an example of that here: http://shapeof.com/

Walter


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Hi,

This is turning out to be an interesting if rather frustrating exercise. I’ve now tried a few low cost programs now. None of which managed all that well.

That’s a nice aspect of Acorn but its not good with handling images, in other respects its fine.
Intaglio as previously mentioned probably can deal with a lot but is imho horrid to use, quite a lot hidden (corner radius and then very crude) or require workarounds.
The best so far and there are more programs out there than you might think is Sketch. Sister program Drawit is also quite good but you get the impression it was the first attempt on the drawing board. Sketch is very smooth to use though a bit buggy in current version. To export you have to slice first. There is also no way to set the initial working resolution, a bit annoying for me.
Vectordesigner I found clunky, sticky sliders etc. so gave up on that early on.
One program though itself basic, I did find that handled images (jpegs) quite well, so it can be done, in that you can crop and resize was Drawberry and its FREE. I’ll have another play with it.

I do realise requesting a vector design program to work with images is asking a lot but some can to an extent, just not very well.

I’m now wondering if the best thing for me would to go back to Pages export out as pdf and work on that ie. mask/crop out background in another program.

Anyway, story so far.

s

ps/ It does make you realise how excellent Freeway is.


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Late to the dance here, but can’t you do your work in Pages, export to PDF file, then open it in Preview and save it out as whatever format they are asking for? Preview let’s you set the resolution when you save as another format. Also, won’t the company accept a PDF file? It seems to me most places would prefer a PDF file over and above a .jpg or .png.


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Hi Robin,

As it turned out I did indeed use Pages and exported as a pdf, never thought of opening in Preview, nice one.

I’m quite new to Pages, used Appleworks for ages until I inadvertently deleted it ages ago during a computer upgrade. Its really nice and well on from Appleworks of old.
Its excellent value now that you can just buy it on its own from the Apps store, as opposed to the whole iworks package.

My disappointment remains with the other programs mentioned, especially in their dealing with images or failing in some other area.
For most things of this ilk and the requirements that I shall need I’ll be exploring and using Pages definitely more in the future.

Thanks again,

seoras


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Everything sounds possible in Pixelmator however one of the funniest things about Pixelmator is that typography tools are the worst in the business. They just are flat out awful, you can’t even adjust character spacing.

I had it installed for the demo, laughed a bit, and then uninstalled it thinking wow they have such a nice looking program and just a poor set of type tools. Hopefully in the next version they will get it.


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There was a time when I would have highly recommended Andrew Stone’s Create for the kind of work you want to do do, seoras, but Create has been fading into the distance over the past couple of years while Andrew Stone moves on to iPhone apps.

I have been researching other apps to take it’s place, since I have begun to experience issues with Create, as the OSX is updated and Create is not, and the one I use/like the best is ZeusDraw (www.chromaticbytes.com). It is similar to Create and even Pages or Keynote, in that you have a big blank canvas where you can drag images, create vector shapes, easily mask items, export to multiple formats/resolutions … lot and lots of things.

If you look at their videos, you will get an idea of everything you can do with this app. You might want to demo it.


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I believe Pixelmator are aware their type tools suck, I get the impression they’ve spent far too so time making the program looking good rather than dealing with particular aspects. Hopefully they will spend some of their windfall from launching on the Apple apps store to employ more specialists rather than new cars. There’s quite a few other aspects they need to look at as well.

Even with my photography hat on I never used used Photoshop (v7) much more than for spotting out and light retouching, so a viable alternative would be a winner. I do have Lightroom and that more useful to me.
Yes, if it was more important from a designer point of view then sure save up and lay out the cash for the full PS.

My broadband has been reduced to a trickle due to suspected fault on the line so unable to view anything webwise - and its a holiday here:-( so unable to look at Zeusdraw at present but its not one I came across on my search so interested, thanks.

One that hasn’t been mentioned is the adobe Rome project, rather limited in fonts sadly and a bit of a curiosity.

S


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Remember also that you can use Freeway as an image editor. Then once you customized your graphics you could then export them to a web ready format (gif, jpg, png) right from the software. Those graphic fast packs can come in handy when buying an expensive editor isn’t an option.


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On 19 April 2011 11:41, seoras email@hidden wrote:

Hi,

I was asked to supply the header I used for a website as a graphic for
print, fine no problem. Now I don’t do a lot of paper design work but
certainly thought a rectangle with rounded corners and two typefaces plus an
image would be easy enough, certainly simple for a design program.
I’ve Intaglio, Pixlemator and a trial of Acorn…

Does anyone have any thoughts on an alternative low cost program that
stumps the above ?

If anyone’s still looking, EazyDraw is available for only £12.99 through the
Mac App Store (normally $95 to download):

http://eazydraw.com

Roger

Roger Houghton
Bath, Somerset
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Cool. Iook’s good.

One could turn into an Apps store junky.

I also came across Art Text 2 Lite (free) or £12.31 full. The free version does plenty.

s


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On 8 Jun 2011, at 15:24, Roger Houghton wrote:

If anyone’s still looking, EazyDraw is available for only £12.99 through the
Mac App Store (normally $95 to download):

Roger, do you own and like Eazydraw? Do you know if the App Store price is temporary?
I just downloaded the demo, and it looks very fully-featured, but complicated as hell!

best wishes,

Paul Bradforth

Buy my eBooks at:
http://www.paulbradforth.com/books/


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On 8 June 2011 18:22, Paul Bradforth email@hidden wrote:

Roger, do you own and like Eazydraw? Do you know if the App Store price is
temporary?
I just downloaded the demo, and it looks very fully-featured, but
complicated as hell!

Hi, Paul.

I own it but haven’t yet got around to using it! I’m not sure about the
price but it has been that in the App Store since at least February.

Roger


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Roger Houghton
Bath, Somerset
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On 8 Jun 2011, at 20:59, Roger Houghton wrote:

I own it but haven’t yet got around to using it! I’m not sure about the
price but it has been that in the App Store since at least February.

Thanks Roger. I’m tempted by the App Store price, I must say.

best wishes,

Paul Bradforth

Buy my eBooks at:
http://www.paulbradforth.com/books/


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Hi there

Just in case you are wanting EazyDraw to access legacy files (which is something I was thinking of buying it for) I found this notw on MacInTouch:

“Version 3.7.3 is available only in the Mac App Store, while Version 3.6.x is available only from the Dekorra web site. The Mac App Store version is priced at $24.99 (instead of $95), requires Mac OS X 10.6.6, and includes support for multi-threaded 64-bit operation. Unlike the Dekorra web site version, the Mac App Store version does not support the legacy Claris Draw, MacDraw, AppleWorks, and PICT formats, although it does support drawings from earlier versions of EazyDraw.”

All the best

Gordon


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On 9 Jun 2011, at 15:20, Gordon Low wrote:

Just in case you are wanting EazyDraw to access legacy files (which is something I was thinking of buying it for) I found this notw on MacInTouch:

Thanks for that :slight_smile:

best wishes,

Paul Bradforth

Buy my eBooks at:
http://www.paulbradforth.com/books/


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MacHeist is offering a $19.99 software bundle that will include Intaglio once sales reach 10,000:

http://macheist.com


Roger Houghton
Bath, Somerset


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