Sunday, March 13, 2011

settling down to business

Here at the Linuxville chateau penthouse studio of all things Linux and art, things are shaping up. Settling down to business means establishing workflows in applications you know and learning new stuff. I have been drawing with ball-point pen for years and thanks to a scanner I am extending that work. Also the GIMP is teaching me a thing or two as is Inkscape. Open source graphics software is great for cutting your teeth in digital art and getting a good bite on skills. If your work is not hampered by Photoshop or Illustrator requirements the road ahead is very exciting, like driving with free gas. Free lancing creativity is like off-roading.

My setup so far is two computers right next to each other. The main one has all the graphic apps on it and the secondary one is an old HP Vectra I use for documents and instructional videos downloaded from YouTube. The hum is minimum because the HP Vectra is fan-less so for an old PC is very quite. Low hum is key to keeping your sanity. I do need an updated CD player, it is very loud. And being the slow machine teaches me patience. This translates to slow down and think through the art.

Then the main machine and the secondary are connected to the same network via a router. I use a program called Synergy to share the keyboard and mouse of the main machine. When you collect hardware it is usually because stuff wears out but not thrown away. The keyboard still works except for the "e" key. I also have LCD monitors with bad driver boards, dag if I could only replace the board. LCD driver boards cost as much as a new display, go figure. Synergy allows me to share the same good keyboard on two PCs. I am still swapping files via a jump drive till I get file sharing activated.

I recently added Blender 3D and K-3D into the mix. I like 3D, it adds sculptural possibilities to my work. The cool thing is that the 2D work can mapped on and into the 3D work. They all play nice together. 

Samples of my work exist at:

Now the trade off of being a digital artist is doing stuff to stay on the screen and/or doing stuff to be printed. I need a printer. First to judge the quality and tweak the work for the best printed outcome. Then to create a configuration file of best settings so that I can get the same results from any printer I use, including a printer at a print service establishment. This is what digital art is about, pushing pixels as far as they can go.

No comments: