Re: [Gimp-developer] Pencil - Tool Options and Hardness

Hi Elle. :) Thanks for your input...

I think Americo's suggestion (original topic of thread) was that the
Hardness slider be removed from the list of options for the Pencil, simply
because this slider doesn't seem to affect the actual paint applied using
the Pencil.

Yes. I think we all agreed that was a good idea.

This suggestion seems like a good idea because it's confusing to users to
have an available slider that doesn't actually do anything. Also the
resulting list of tool options for the Pencil would be shorter, so there's
less likelihood of the toolbox needing a slider to access all of the tool
options menu, which is always a good thing.

Yep. You got it right-on-the-money. :)

The suggestion was subsequently made to remove the Pencil tool and add
additional options to the Brush tool to allow to transform the Brush into
the Pencil. Even if this were possible, doing this would:

  * Make the current Brush options list longer, increasing the likelihood
of the toolbox needing a slider to show all the Brush tool options.

*looks at gimp trunk* - Well, we seem to be well past the point where we're
caring about too many options... I have 3 pages of scrolldown already. ;)
We could decrease the spacing between the checkboxes and fit an extra
checkbox in there if it's really on the edge of being too much, I think...

  * Increase the number of keyboard/click/etc actions that would be
required for people who do use the Pencil for painting.

Speaking as a digital painter (samples available upon request), I can tell
you the Pencil tool does not replace a pencil brush. In fact, the pencil
tool acts nothing like a pencil at all. :) Could re-name it the
"pixel-tool".... but it absolutely sucks at being a pencil in just about
every way it possibly could. ;)

  * Increase the possible combinations of sliders for the Brush tool, which
would make the Brush options more confusing, less easy to use.

It's already really, really complicated. lol. However, take a look at the
myPaint brushes. See how each one has an icon that shows what the brush
does. It even shows whether it's supposed to be a pencil or not. Now
imagine a brush preset with a pencil on it, with pixels coming out the tip
in the way it does on canvas currently. That, imho is a far better solution
than having a pencil tool that doesn't act like a pencil.

Personally I've only been experimenting with digital painting over the last
year or so, so take my input for what it's worth (complete amateur). But
the Pencil tool seems pretty important because it creates hard edges on the
brush stamps, which for various dynamics creates a different and often very
pleasing result compared to the Brush tool (uses aren't limited to pixel
art and drawing pixel-perfect boxes).

It actually destroys brushes, and it does not create hard edges so much as
it creates jagged ones. In digital painting, jaggies are not your friend.
The exception, of course is pixel art.

imho the 3 worst things you can have in a digital painting program (for
digital painting) are:
1. Visibly replicated brush patterns (the exception is repeated stamp-like
brushes like paw or footprints)
2. Bad anti-aliasing (or no anti-aliasing)
3. No tapering of line width based on acceleration or pressure. (The
exception is round or square oil-paint brushes, and some markers)

The MyPaint brush system combats a lot of these issues, as do recent
additions to GIMP's own brush options (all 5k of them. ;))

Your input is welcome. It's important to find a good solution that makes
GIMP easier to use. Great ideas don't come from only seasoned digital
painters, so thanks for all your input.

So thanks again for your contribution to the conversation.

Possibly the people who want to remove the Pencil tool simply don't use
this particular painting tool?

I'm not willing to get rid of it unless we can put the functionality
somewhere else. That said, I've only ever used it for pixel art.


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