On 05/07/2010 06:13 AM, Cristian Secară wrote:
> On Fri,  7 May 2010 12:24:19 +0200 (CEST), Easyword wrote:
>> - GIMP supports only RGB color space
>> This is a limitation, which prevents the use of the software in
>> professional use. You may use GIMP to create graphics for
>> professionals, but you may not receive any professional graphics.
> It depends what „professional” for you means.
> I am working in television/video area, where all graphics are in RGB
> (sometimes with additional key channel (alpha)). For me the CYMK color
> space is of no use (and I get in trouble when someone gives some color
> specifications in non-RGB values).

As a professional graphic designer I think that there's a real lack of 
understanding about color spaces among graphic designers. I know lots of 
designers that do color corrections in Photoshop with an image in CMYK 
color mode. In fact they do everything in CMYK mode if they open 
Photoshop at all.

Unless you are creating a graphic that is intended to specifically match 
a printed color, this method of working in CMYK is unnecessary and ill 
advised. The belief that working with photographs in CMYK mode is 
'professional' and more color accurate is wrong. An image should only be 
translated to CMYK mode once it's finished and ready to go to press. And 
that translation needs to happen in a color managed process.

The CMYK mode in Photoshop is merely an estimation of the CMYK color 
space. It understands the gamut of CMYK but the representation of those 
colors on the screen is an estimation dependent on a calibrated display 
and fully color managed workflow. After all, your display renders colors 
in RGB.

It's much more important to work in a color managed environment. I've 
worked with many, many 'professional' designers that have very little or 
no understanding of color profiles or color management. I've even seen 
them discard the color profiles of images when they open them in 
Photoshop. That was actually the recommended practice at a magazine I 
worked at. Unbelievable. Don't believe it? I still can't believe it.

Of course, this is all anecdotal. I don't mean to start a flame war. My 
point is that Gimp is not Photoshop. A lot of folks give Gimp a try and 
frequently criticize Gimp for not being a complete clone of Photoshop. 
Granted, Photoshop is a great tool in many ways and a good ruler for 
Gimp to measure itself against. But assuming that Photoshop is 
infallible and that every aspect of it is sacrosanct is a mistake.

The developers are addressing aspects of Gimp that they find useful and 
interesting. The CMYK color mode is complex I'm sure, mostly due to all 
of the color estimation that is needed to display the mode on screen (as 
mentioned above). Alexia is right. This is building things from scratch. 
And we do have the Separation plugin to export to CMYK. But no, Gimp 
does not have the safety blanket of CMYK color mode to give graphic 
designers the assurance that their colors look right (even if the 
accuracy of those colors is an estimation dependent on a color managed 
and calibrated display).

Gimp CAN be used to create professional graphics. You can also make 
professional graphics with printed photos, rubylith, paste, pens, ink, 
lead type and paper. Both of these approaches are dependent on the 
creator having a certain level of knowledge about the printing process.

The trouble that most contemporary designers have when it comes to 
creating professional graphics with the Gimp (and Inkscape, Scribus, 
etc.) is due to their lack of knowledge. That's not an insult. They're 
just used to working with a lot of programs that handle most of the 
technical details that graphic designers and prepress workers needed to 
know in the past. These open source programs, as great as they are, just 
aren't entirely to that point yet.

One of the big reasons that they aren't to that point is because they 
are developed by very smart people that only need the program to take 
the project to a certain point. The other reason is that most of the 
developers are not professional graphic designers. Along with that, most 
professional graphic designers know very little about programming.

If graphic designers want great open source tools that meet their needs, 
they're going to have to start contributing to the projects. That's what 
I've been trying to do. You got to put your money (or time and effort) 
where your mouth is.

Thanks for listening.

-Jason Simanek
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