> Hi, I just wondered if anyone out there has used this package. I can't
>begin to afford anything like photoshop/photopaint, and I'm looking for
>something that can both generate pictures and manipulate scanned images,
>primarily for use as texture maps in povray and poss. truespace. Also as a
>tool for post-proc and touching up output from those programs. I was wondering
>if Fauve Matisse would fit the bill, since it is cheap, and seems to be a
>compromise between image manipulation and bitmap painting, with fairly good
>alpha channel tools. If you've used this, please say what you think of it.
I bought a copy recently (It actually worked out somewhat cheaper to order
direct from the states), and I'm quite pleased with it. A save disabled
version has been on lots of cover CDs within the last few months, so give
that a try (I think PC Office is one of the more recent ones, under
'utilities'); PC Home(?) and probably others have had it in the past.
It specialises in emulating traditional artistic tools, and
works very nicely with pressure sensitive tablets like the wacom artpad.
The alpha channel stuff is quite nice - you can tweak the opacity and
soft-edgeness of the various tools, or cut out an object and then paint
opacity in or out until you get the result you want. The object-based
approach (which, among other things, lets you do the equivalent of painting
new bits on transparent backgrounds which can then be moved around - or
masking parts of the picture so they're affected/unaffected by painting)
is very nice - although you're unlikely to discover how to do the first
trick without the manual, it makes sense once you see how it's done
(although I'm mildly surprised that it didn't get a shortcut instead of
requiring three (simple) operations).
Given a pressure sensitive tablet, it's very nice for drawing; far nicer,
IMO, than fractal design dabbler (which you can get bundled with the
ArtPad tablet; even allowing for the fact that dabbler isn't meant to be
particularly adjustable, I preferred Matisse (though I liked the dabbler
colour selection wheel/triangle tool). [I assume fractal design painter,
dabblers 'big brother' is substantially different - but I haven't seen it].
For drawing, especially with a pressure sensitive tablet, I'd say matisse
is well worth a look. For retouching without a tablet, matisse has a number
of nice distortion effects - but almost all paint packages will provide
basic copy/brightness/contrast retouch capability, so you probably need
to decide whether you want more than that.
For any serious drawing work, a tablet is going to be far easier to use
than a mouse.
(For other stuff currently on UK Cover CDs, there's a save disabled version
of photoshop, and several other paint packages, including at least one
full shareware package).