On Tue, 2010-01-12 at 16:51 +0000, Nuno Miguel dos Santos Baeta wrote:
> * Photoshop: Must be used for 'serious' work.

Depends on who's being serious.  Truth is, it depends on the type of
work and one man's "serious" is another man's "who cares".  

Note that I've done covers for magazines with GIMP and that was
loooooong before the current version provided many of the advanced
features it has today.  But also note that I'm not a photographer.  My
SLR died a few years ago and I've yet to replace it.

> * GIMP: May be used for 'serious' work if that means showing a photo
> on a web page.  Otherwise forget it because:

Baloney.  See previous comment re: magazine covers.  I've also designed
images printed on clothing and other products.  So you'd have to define
"serious" to validate that assertion.  However, "serious" photography
may have different needs than other "serious" graphic design work.
Since I'm not a photographer I can't say if that's the case.

>   ** Is has no color management (I don't know what this is);

The current version has color management tools.  Color management is the
ability to map the colors from one device to another.  So mapping the
colors you got from your digital camera to what you see on your display
requires software to make sure they visually match due to the way
hardware (cameras and monitors) behave with respect to color.

>   ** Just 8 bit/channel;

Still true.  They're working toward 16 bits per channel.  Lack of 16
bits per channel can be a problem for some users such as the visual
effects industry.

>   ** No CMYK.

GIMP works in sRGB mode but can convert from other modes to sRGB (via
color management).  It does not convert to CMYK mode though it can color
separate sRGB into CMYK with plugins.  To my knowledge (which is
limited on the subject) Photoshop does not work in CMYK mode either - it
just maps (on the fly) CMYK to sRGB (or similar color model) so it
appears to be working in CMYK.  GIMP doesn't do that (at least not yet).

> PS - I have also been advised to use a program such as Aperture (Mac
> OS X only) or Lightroom (Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows), as that is
> what a photographer really needs.  

I'm sure many professional photographers swear by these.  Its up to you
to decide if the quality of the results warrant the price.  The only way
to know - for you - is to compare both the commercial apps and the open
source alternatives for what you're trying to accomplish.
Michael J. Hammel                                    Principal Software Engineer
mjham...@graphics-muse.org                           http://graphics-muse.org
Got a full 6-pack, but lacks the plastic thing to hold it all together.
-- From a real employee performance evaluation.

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