The Fine Art of Picking out the Perfect Paint Package; IT.MAIL

Daily Mail (London), December 1, 1998 | Go to article overview

The Fine Art of Picking out the Perfect Paint Package; IT.MAIL


Byline: ANDREW BROWN

PLAYING with pictures on your PC is addictive and can be very useful.

Small businesses can design stationery, posters and anything else they think will help them to sell goods and services.

You can make anything from business cards to album covers at a fraction of the cost of having them professionally designed - and they look pretty good, too.

Photo-realistic colour, which you get on screens as a matter of course now, makes things better than ever before; and with inkjet printers that can produce wonderful results on glossy paper, there is no reason to hold back.

There are a couple of programs, such as Kai Power Goo, which allow processing and desk top publishing work as well.

It also comes with two disks of clipart, fonts and other add-ins.

Last year's edition, version seven, is also available without the clipart and, for less than [pounds sterling]100, it's a bargain.

CorelDraw comes with two separate parts to handle the two ways in which a computer can display a picture. Traditionally, 'drawing' programs store images as a collection of mathematical descriptions, which can then be stretched and pushed around, and recoloured.

This is great if you are actually good at drawing - and in that case, you will want a graphics tablet, such as the Wacom Art Pad, rather than a mouse which, when it comes to fine lines, is about as sensitive as a brick.

For people who need to manipulate pictures or photographs that have been produced outside the computer, the answer is a 'paint' program, which simply stores pictures as pictures.

MOST of the popular photo-editing packages, such as Adobe PhotoDeluxe, are paint programs in this sense, and digital photography has opened up a huge market for them. This need not involve digital cameras, though.

Once they are developed, ordinary films can be scanned at very high resolution onto Kodak Photo CDs. This is probably the you to do nothing but morph and distort images. Yet most graphics packages have stricter controls on your frivolity.

The largest and most serious package on the PC has traditionally been CorelDraw, which is now up to version eight. However, this is too expensive for anything but serious business use.

But there is nothing the program cannot do. In the same way that desk top publishing programs and word processors can now manipulate images, Draw can do basic word best source of images to manipulate. You get the prints in the normal way, but also a disk containing all the pictures on the film.

But in recent years, the boundaries between these drawing and painting programs have been blurred, making the screen like virtual paper and helping computers work the way we work. …

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