First Hour With Mypaint


Firstly, thanks for making Mypaint. It looks great!

I tested it with a 61MP panorama image, and it works. A converted .ora opens in about 10 seconds on my 4800qm quad laptop and SSD.

It appears like Mypaint can draw at that size. The smoothness settings in the brushes costs speed.

Yes, the rotate canvase functionality seems to work on images of that size.

Though, (here it comes…) I do wish we had a larger icon and pallet size. I also do wish that we can create an image of a known size, without resorting to creating blank documents, though I will do that. Sometimes we need to create things within reason or within certain constraints.

The online manual is pretty spartan and fairly, free of informative screenshots, and has excessive drill-down.

Mypaint itself looks like a great program.

Thanks again,

I think the icon size is controlled by Gtk themes…not sure how that works on Windows. The palette size is dynamic, and scales as you resize its panel.

User documentation

Thanks for the feedback! Yes, the online manual needs to be completed. I’m hoping that lots of people will help the project out by writing and reviewing some pages for it. The more people that get involved, the better!

:family: Anyone can help MyPaint improve! Volunteer contributions are how we grow.
:point_right: Got writing skills? Start documenting today!

There is a lot of drill-down in our manual, and I’m in two minds about whether that’s a good idea. Some pages need to be linked directly from the program, and I have ideas about adding more help buttons as the documentation improves. There’s a help page for the HCY/gamut mask editor already. For now, I’ve marked the ones whose name must not change with a header thingy.

Page sizes

One point in your topic stood out:

Did you try using the frame tool? Works best with the options panel (cog icon) visible: that offers the ability to type in real-world sizes and calculate pixel sizes @ some-nominal-DPI.

There’s no separate command for creating a new document at a specified size yet, but it’s on the list:

There’s even some mocked or partly implemented UI floating around that could be used for both new document creation and frame tool options:

I don’t know how well interrogating the OS paper size presets is going to work on Windows through. If it turns out the list is blank, I guess we could hardcode a table of the ISO 216 paper sizes.

Mikshaw, thank you for the reply. For 3k and 4k screens, which are all the rage now, the brushes are way too small. The general UI could should probably one size larger, and this is from someone who doesn’t like to give up screen real estate.

achadwickDevelop, often the problem is: It’s hard to create documentation for something scarcely documented, unless you are personally involved with the design/creation process. Perhaps, after I become familiar with it I will look at editing the Wiki.

[This is a niggle, but I find myself wanting tic-marks for brush sliders because, for a new user, a small movement makes a large change, like the sliders are logarithmic or something.]

Yes, I just found the Frame functionality, and different, but it’s working for me. Different does not necessarily wrong.

I should think that “templates” meaning predefined blank documents might be nice for the user, but would they not be impractical for document setup because of the shear number of possibilities? In that, it would be impractical for the program to ship with poster-sized, high resolution blank documents, but if they were generated such as in the widget, that that should work.

[So, I have two artist friends who create bitmap art who don’t really understand the ramifications of resolution. They just want to draw, BUT the problem comes when they want their bitmap art to suddenly become high-resolution, when it’s already too late. This is the harsh reality of bitmap art. Personally and obviously, people can create real works of art with a good bitmap painting program such as Mypaint. I just my hope that the user finds it easy to make choices that ensure that their art endures the test of time.]

I showed a third artist (T) friend wants a smudge tool.

The first artist friend (A) felt that a previous version Mypaint relied on keyboard too much (for a tablet-only), but I don’t quite see how that is warranted. I will ask for a demonstration, and give feedback.

I will show the second artist-friend (E) it, and give feedback.

For some drawings, I may use Mypaint a strange way in that, I may draw with color only, and ignore texture, and then, after the fact I may use a high-resolution scanned piece of paper for heightmap/opacititymap.

About brush sizes, or keeping tabs on brushes and changes you make to them during working with them, there is a small target like icon in the bottom right of the the UI, if you select it and then click on a part of the artwork that has a brush stroke you’d like to bring back, it will somehow take the settings from the stroke and put them onto the current brush. I found this is a great way to keep my brush types consistent while doing work. One could even have a layer where you dab any brush you find you’re using building up a mini library of brush types. Be aware that any editing of a layer in another paint program removes the information that the stroke holds for this tool to work.

About templates, you can create page sizes of specific dimensions and DPI in a program like Photoshop for example (usually best to put some sort of reference grid or marking on it so you can see it later) and save this as a jpg or png. Then open that up in MyPaint, zoom out so you can see it, check that the frame/crop tool recognizes it by turning it on. I would then create a new empty layer and delete the original one with the reference grid on it. Then save this as an .ora file, name it as a blank document or perhaps write the page dimensions as the name. Now you have a native .ora template to bring in that is of the dimensions you’d like to work with.

I estimate the size of those documents will be between 8k and 350k - depending mainly on compressibility of background tile, hardly at all on document dimensions.
This seems acceptable to me. Personally, (as the creator of the issue linked above) I would hope to mainly ship with templates using flat-color backgrounds, which would mean they were all in the region of 8k in size.

You have prompted me to realize that it might be better for the ‘presets’ to be generated at build time, rather than including them verbatim in the versioned source code. Thanks for that.

One thing that can be done with the current MyPaint to “trick” yourself into making higher resolution images without thinking about setting the resolution is to just zoom out. You can either zoom out before starting to draw, or set the default zoom level to a low percentage.

I came to this thread (“First hour with Mypaint”) with the hope that it would be about… err… well, the first hour with Mypaint. It turns it’s about several (very interesting and useful, though) issues regarding the user interface.

Nevertheless, being a newbie to Mypaint and to this forum, I did not want to risk some sort of criticism by breaking rules and creating a thread that was not necessary, so I will post here about my “First hour with Mypaint”, if that is acceptable, that is. Please be patient with me if not.

I am very experienced in several “digital artist’s tools”, such as (in Linux): Krita, Inkscape and a bit of Gimp) and (in Windows) Photoshop, Illustrator, Corel Painter, Corel Draw, among several others.

My first impressions with Mypaint were, frankly, a bit confusing. On one side, it has many refreshingly creative ways of seeing and doing things, as well as an impressive amount of excellent and beautiful selection of brushes and other tools, including advanced features that are seen only in expensive proprietary software, and so on. So I was (and am) extremely happy to see such fantastic Open Source program, that can almost replace with advantage many proprietary tools that not necessarily have the best quality always.

On the other hand, however, I did notice immediately the lack of selection tools, and found that there was some explanation that I found somewhat unconvincing, suggesting something like it was a decision not to use selection tools because it was not necessarily mandatory to use them, or something like that nature, that really disappointed me. I would understand if I would have read: “we don’t have that yet, but plan on having it, it just will take time”. And that would have been clear and neither confusing nor disappointing.

I have read, however, a thread in this forum about “Selection Tools” and realized that is now included in the plans, which is the best news you guys could announce here, and actually should be mentioned in the Mypaint documentation, instead of suggesting that it is possible to work without selection tools, because although it is objectively working without selection tools, you will understand that every single potential user of this otherwise magnificent software, who is experienced in other traditional platforms, will absolutely think immediately “yes, possible, but a huge, unsustainable pain”.

Regardless of that issue, I must say, without any doubts, that Mypaint is a truly remarkable, impressive digital artist’s tool, that I am going to promote as much as I can with friends, because it definitely needs to increase its users universe. I also think that it would be of the highest importance, that Mypaint gets real “gurus” artists using it and promoting it. But for that to happen more frequently, the First Hour impression has yet to be improved a little bit, in my opinion an honest and open clarification on the situation of the Selection Tools feature request would be much more beneficial to that end, than to try to convince people to change their techniques so dramatically as to forgetting about selections because somehow it’s possible to live without that.

Thanks a lot for this extraordinary project. I wish all the success and I will use Mypaint a lot more, even without the Selection Tools as I know them, perhaps switching between Krita/Gimp and Mypaint, whatever, I want to benefit of all the good stuff you guys offer.

I think the simplified explanation for why there are no selection tools is that MyPaint isn’t an image editor like Gimp and Krita are. Those applications were designed from the start to provide a full studio of tools to manipulate existing images. MyPaint was designed to paint.

Carrying my 15 laptop, my back has been bothering me, so I had to buy a lighter computer. I ordered a pen-equipped P40 yoga. I am looking forward to trying it with Mypaint : )

So, all the other solely painting based programs like ArtRage, Corel Painter, SAI, Paintstorm, OpenCanvas, etc. suddenly become image editors simply because they have selection tools?