Dontcha just love dreams? But then comes the time when you have to wake up and come back to the real world where the computer may or may not start, the program may open but it will probably crash and the nice folks who write, produce and sell the programs are always looking for a new and better way to stick their hand in your pocket and grab you round the throat with the other and squeeze you till you cough up all of the money you have, will ever have and indebt your children down through all of the generations so that their Mercedes Benz dealers can send their kids to private school on the profits they make when the software guys come in to buy a new Mercedes.
And now in addition to coming up with a new and improved version of the product every two years they have had a brain storm, they will no longer sell you their software, you have to rent it!
Now everyone knows that when it comes to image editing Adobe is THE EIGHT HUNDRED POUND GORILLA IN THE ROOM, and believe me they want to take full advantage of it! They call their new extortion scheme a subscription, but when the guys with no necks and the double-breasted suits step into the voting booth you can be pretty sure that they aren’t there to offer you Girl Scout cookies.
There is no way around it, if you want to keep using Photoshop you are going to have to pony up and buy into the protection racket.
Or sense you’ve just switched away from the tyranny of Micro-Grasping and you have that brand new installation of Ubuntu I told you about why not do the same thing to Adobe and see how they like being left out in the cold.
But there isn’t anything with the power, the reach, the grasp, the tools, the shear might of Photoshop.
Okay, here’s where I tell you I don’t know cause I’ve never used Photoshop. It is just too expensive for this old codger and I’ve never needed all the bells and whistles so I have made do with other programs.
Which is why I can tell you all about The GIMP. This is a wonderful program built for Linux but available to Windows users and very nearly as mighty as the Incredible Hulk, Photoshop.
This will tell you much more about the program than I could except I have been using it for several years now and in spite of a learning curve which is almost as steep as the one Hannibal dealt with getting those elephants over the Alps, it is a powerhouse.
This page will tell you all about how to download the program.
Now I know you remember how you did the download when you set up your Ubuntu disc, so I don’t have to tell you how to go about it. Just remember where you have set the computer to store the file and when you get the green light from Firefox or the all clear from Internet Plunderer, you can go to the folder click on the installation file and let the set up begin.
Now there is no easy way to get into GIMP. It is a huge and complex program and it will take you a few days to understand. That is why it is such a good idea to go ahead and ditch the High Priced Spread and start using GIMP right now.
I have it on good authority that a prominent local artist, besides me, uses GIMP and is happy and completely satisfied. Yeah sure, satisfied with a program that takes a twenty mule team to haul across the megabytes and learn, not likely.
Okay, sure, satisfied is hard to come by but then I have heard that Photoshop users complain about the step learning curve and the difficult navigation, so dealing with GIMP isn’t a picnic but it isn’t any more difficult than getting a lock on Photoshop.
If you just throw up your hands and run around in little circles screaming, “The sky is falling…” there is a book, available on Amazon, (Amazing that one hemongeous retailer makes things so available and easy while the same sort of corporate giants across the way don’t get it at all and take the opposite track and make things as difficult for the customer as possible.), which you can have in your hot little hands in less than a week and then you can learn all of the nifty, neat and cool things which GIMP will do for you.
Now I am trying to get my sketching skills back under my own control so that when I try to draw something it looks like the person which inspired it and less like something Paul Klee or Picasso would have done, but if you just can't draw, GIMP will make it possible for you to create a pretty fair sketch from a photograph, which you can then use as the underpinning of your painting.
And that’s just one of the little tricks an old dog can learn from a new piece of software.
Take a look and give it a try and maybe this year for Christmas the kids can have toys and stuff instead of coal in their socks cause you in a stroke of genius went out…downloaded GIMP and saved the seven hundred dollars or the forty bucks a month their new and wonderful subscription scheme would have cost you and just think of how happy the kids will be with their toys and their little cheeks will be rosy cause the coal they usually get won’t be there and the room will be cold enough to hang beef but they will play and laugh and dance around the tree cause you did the right thing and had money left over to support some other Corporate Pirate.
Everybody say, “Arrgh!”
* You do know that Robert Newton, the one and only Long John Silver, not to be upstaged by all of the Hollyweird luminaries who have attempted the role before and since, Wallace Berry, Orson Wells, Charlton Heston, Eddie Izzard, Lance Henriksen, Anthony Quinn, Tim Curry and Jack Palance, never, ever said “Arrgh!”