Help, I am going M A D !

Discussion in 'Design and Graphics' started by Jeanjeannie, Feb 19, 2013.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2013
    Location:
    Devon
    #1
    I am new to Macs and I am really missing my old drawing programme
    Serif Drawplus. I am looking for something to replace it which is not mega expensive and also has the option to make cards. I do all my own Greetings cards and friends and family expect them now.
    Does anyone know of a Mac programme which will fit the bill?
    Thanks in advance
    JJ
     

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  2. macrumors regular

    bbeers

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    Location:
    Maryland
    #2
    Cheap / Free Vector Drawing Software

    While I haven't personally us it, I would take a look at Inkscape it is a free solution i keep hearing people talk about, mostly good.

    I would aso look into the Sketchbook apps from Autodesk, there is a free version in the App Store. They have a great interface if you use a tablet regularly.

    iDraw would be another option.
     
  3. macrumors 6502a

    CrickettGrrrl

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2012
    Location:
    B'more or Less
    #3
    I love iDraw which is a very intuitive vector program -about $25 I think, Pixelmator is still on sale for $15 in the Mac App Store and is very good -somewhat similar to Photoshop, Sketchbook Express & Sketchbook Copic are both free but more limited --tools & layers-wise, etc.
     
  4. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2013
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    Devon
    #4
    Thanks very much for the info.
    Do you know if any of these programmes have templates for greetings cards, business cards, banners etc?
    JJ
     
  5. martinX, Feb 19, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2013

    macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 11, 2009
    #5
    Take a look at PrintMaster.

    Edit: I just looked at some reviews of it. May not be the app you want...
     
  6. CrickettGrrrl, Feb 19, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2013

    macrumors 6502a

    CrickettGrrrl

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    #6
    In the past if I wanted to use an illustration as a card I either dragged it into iPhoto and then used the "Create" button on the bottom & chose size, orientation, borders, etc from the options within iPhoto; OR I configured the illustration in Photoshop to be on the right side of the document and used the rulers & guidelines, etc. and just printed it onto bristol board.

    By the way, if you go to Preferences and/or Menu in iDraw, Pixelmator & Photoshop and set Rulers to show, you can drag out guidelines from the top and left sides, they won't print.

    I don't know about banners because my inkjet printer doesn't do that. If I needed banner-size enlargements in my past life, I'd email or take a disk to a local printer and had 3 or 4 ft x 25 ft banners printed. With stuff like this, vectors are your friends. And back-of-the-envelope calculations... :)

    ---Also, figure out your proportions and check within the menus in your Printer settings for different sizes like postcard, A4, 5x7, 2x3, etc. If I recall correctly, iPhoto has this sort of thing in the Create menu too.

    Google for internet graphics tuts too (Pixelmator, Photoshop, Vectortuts+), there were a ton of them just before Valentine's Day. I used one from PSD-Dude.com to make several card variations:

    http://www.psd-dude.com/tutorials/photoshop.aspx?t=heart-in-envelope-icon-psd-tutorial

    Hmmm, I guess that doesn't exactly help as you want to mail your cards. I email mine now with only a hint at real envelopes, etc. because i'm cheap.
    :)

    Edit: I just took a look at a card I made using iPhoto last year and the neat thing is that there's also a template for a matching interior with nice matching graphics (I used one with a frame).
     
  7. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2013
    Location:
    Devon
    #7
    I think I need to explain what I do .
    I draw & I paint on my laptop and also am into Photography.
    I make personalised greetings cards which may be a drawing, a painting or perhaps one of my photos and at the moment I can just work on An A5 card, page by page on my Serif programme. This makes it very easy to print, the front and back pages are on one side of an A4 sheet,and the middle pages are on the other. Just have to fold the paper correctly. I don't want other designs etc just a blank template.

    Really appreciate your help guys.
    Thank you.
    JJ
     
  8. macrumors newbie

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    Jan 4, 2013
    #8
  9. macrumors 6502a

    CrickettGrrrl

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    #9
    Then you don't really need a template, especially as you want it to be blank anyway. You can do all this yourself easily by choosing the A5 size initially in iDraw or Pixelmator, Photoshop, then setting a guideline at the fold, and resizing your art after dropping it into the file, or create it there on the right side of the guide lines. No sweat. :)

    Or as Zyriab stated, in a VM.
     
  10. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2013
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    Devon
    #10
    Hi
    Yes, I know I can partition the hard drive and run windows programmes but as someone said to me " why spoil a brilliant piece of kit?"
    So, I am determined to embrace all thing Apple and persevere.
    I know I can make a template of my own but I am lazy and was hoping to find one already done.
    If I don't get anymore advice I will probably download iDraw as it appears to be the nearest to Drawplus. Can you tell me if you can manipulate photos as well as draw and paint.
    Cheers
    JjJ
     
  11. CrickettGrrrl, Feb 21, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2013

    macrumors 6502a

    CrickettGrrrl

    Joined:
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    #11
    If you also want to manipulate photos then it'd be better to use Pixelmator which like Photoshop is raster or pixel with some vector capabilities. (Next update for Pixelmator is supposed to have more shape/improved vector offerings, & layer effects, btw.) It's currently half the price ($15) of iDraw at the moment. There's pretty good support on Pixelmators' website, plus other very helpful PXM tutorial sites & communities.

    iDraw is so easy to make vectored illustrations, yes, draw & "paint", but not manipulate photos. However, you CAN import a photo or pattern jpg to use as a Fill instead of a solid color or gradient. Think of it more like playing with ColorForms. You can also save time by saving your frequently used shapes into your personal Shape Library, iDraw does come with 3 shape libraries. You can save your own gradients, etc. iDraw doesn't have the support community that Pixelmator has, but you can get some answers and help from their Facebook Page if need be.

    Between the two above, they cover a lot of the ground of Adobe's Photoshop & Illustrator, but more Mac-like, more intuitive to use, and hella cheaper by factors.

    I've had Adobe Creative Suite for about 7 years now and only scratched the surface until about a year ago. I also looked for alternatives to Illustrator-which has been SO frustrating. So in the past year I've also been playing around and learning a lot of stuff with Pixelmator, iDraw, Artboard (too crashy lately), Sketchbook Express, ArtRage, etc., etc. iDraw has been so great that it's helped me understand Illustrator better and actually get some stuff done in that PITA program.

    Re the template, it's just a matter of placement. Just try it once. And have fun, these programs are terrific! :)

    http://www.pixelmator.com/tutorials/#third-party

    http://www.pxm-tuts.com/
     
  12. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2013
    Location:
    Devon
    #12
    Well, I have taken the plunge and downloaded iDraw and, so far, it looks good. Different interface to Drawplus but quite intuitive. Needless to say there is much to learn but I just want to thank those who replied to my post.
    I have also downloaded Pages so I am going to be kept occupied for the rest of this cold winter here in the U.k.

    I am not sure if anyone can answer this but I am finding it difficult to see the IDraw interface, the icons and writing is tiny on my MacBook Pro.
    Can I make it bigger? Zoom in or change the dark colour?
    Cheers
    JJ
     
  13. macrumors 6502a

    CrickettGrrrl

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2012
    Location:
    B'more or Less
    #13
    Hi Jeanjeannie,

    I wondered which you'd choose :) First of all, do you have a Retina MBPro?
    I don't have experience with one of those, I'm using a 21.5" iMac --not the honking huge 27", even so, it does make a difference over a 13" or 15" screen, so I'm not having too much difficulty with the white lettering on grey. However, iDraw had an update yesterday, Feb 26th, which included Retina optimization --you most likely have this 2.2 version. If not, check your menu under iDraw/About iDraw.

    No, you cannot change the UI colors in Preferences. But you can send a suggestion to the devs at info@indeeo.com. ---Also try changing your display to a brighter setting to see if that helps give a little contrast. There are Accessibility settings in User Preferences which can enlarge font size although i don't know if that will work with this software, it's worth a look see.

    The newest version iDraw also supports pinch-to-zoom on your MBP trackpad. Alternatively, the keyboard commands Control plus scrolling (or arrow keys) will enlarge or diminish everything on your screen including the menus & palettes.

    To enlarge your project you can pinch to zoom or hit the Command and + or - keys, then move around it by holding the Spacebar and "grabbing" with mouse or trackpad.

    I downloaded the iDraw Help PDF (which is surprisingly excellent for a Help document...very visual): http://www.indeeo.com/idraw/downloads/iDrawUserGuide.pdf

    --Wishing you a lot of fun with iDraw! :) --and I hope the slight adjustments will make it easier to see the interface.
    (Hey iDraw mice, wave to JeanJeannie...)
     

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  14. macrumors 604

    chrono1081

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
    Location:
    Isla Nublar
    #14
    Although I don't do much with vector graphics iDraw looks REALLY good! I hate Illustrators mess and may give this a shot if I need vectors in the future.
     

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