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Weekly Download: Film Gimp Brushes, Series 1

75 natural-media brushes for the open-source image editor By Dave Nagel
Today I offer you two weeks' worth of free downloads, since last week I wasn't able to post anything, owing to the fact that I was trying to figure out how to create the very collection that I'm giving you today. This collection of brushes is for a relative newcomer to the Mac platform--Film Gimp--and, in fact, not a native application at all. But we'll get to that later.

The collection at hand is a library of 75 natural-media brushes for Film Gimp. Why Film Gimp of all applications? Film Gimp is a 16-bit image editor, a rarity in itself, and it's an open-source application, meaning that it comes with a license that, like most open-source software, is respectful of the end user, unlike most commercial software and even a lot of freeware and shareware. Plus, in the case of Film Gimp, it's completely free to the end user. No cost. 16-bit image editing. Yeah, I'd say it's worth exploring.

But one area it's lacking is in the painting department. It has a paint engine built in that's roughly the equivalent of Photoshop 6. It's nowhere near as sophisticated a painting engine as Photoshop 7 and, except for right here, can't even be mentioned in the same sentence as programs like Synthetik Studio Artist or Corel Painter. But development continues, and, at least, we can create and use custom brushes to emulate some of the dynamics that are missing for the time being.

The brushes
For me, the most essential brushes for any image editor or painting program are ones that emulate natural media. Once you have these, you can combine them and build any number of bizarre and unnatural brushes. We begin with a collection of 75 brushes that roughly fall into the category of charcoal, though you might wonder at the sense in this when you see some of them. Nevertheless, this is my collection, and I'll call them what I want!

This collection includes a wide range of sizes and shapes, from 10 x 10 pixels up to 600 x 600 pixels. Here's a sampling.

Nagel Series 1 Charcoal 46 (200 x 200 pixels)

Nagel Series 1 Charcoal 74 (600 x 600 pixels)

Nagel Series 1 Charcoal 55 (400 x 400 pixels)

A sampling of the 10-pixel brushes in the collection

A sampling of the 20-pixel brushes in the collection

A sampling of the 100-pixel brushes in the collection

Satisfied? All right. Continue on to the next page for download and installation instructions.

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