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FreeHand Forum • View topic - Your expectations
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Your expectations

Your input for Quasado's FreeHand alternative Gravit (formerly known as Expressive or Stagestack)

Re: Your expectations

Postby jmk2of7 » Thu Jul 19, 2012 11:38 am

Another thing Freehand has that outdoes Illustrator is the ability to view individual layers in outline mode while keeping others totally visible. I find this a strong plus when working on illustrations. With Illustrator it's all or nothing. Would definitely like to see this feature with Expressive.
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Export compatibility with QuarkXPress

Postby Head » Thu Jul 19, 2012 11:40 am

The ability to export CMYK and spot colour files from FreeHand in EPS format and place these into QuarkXPress with full compatibility for subsequent output from XPress to high resolution device-colour PDF files for printing on press has been crucial to our workflow since the year dot.

It is essential that Quasado Expressive maintains this compatibility with QuarkXPress.
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Re: Your expectations

Postby steverinzen » Thu Jul 19, 2012 12:12 pm

Selection of objects behind one another should be as straight forward as Freehand's (ctrl click).

Option/alt drag feature to create curves between points is a fundamental!
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Re: Your expectations

Postby slopes » Thu Jul 19, 2012 12:28 pm

Just a thought (from a non-geek).

re: compatibility with FH files.

Would it not be the simplest option to write a small extension/plugin for FHMX from where a user can open a file and 'Save as' an Expressive one (eg: my-drawing.exp)?

Another thought - Quasado... please do not seek any guidance or reference points from Illustrator when building Expressive. This alone should guarantee your program is superior.
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Transform and repeat in conjunction with ruler origin

Postby Head » Thu Jul 19, 2012 12:39 pm

We'd be lost without the ability to accurately fine-tune the transformation of an object or objects around a given origin, e.g. to scale a tracing image precisely to fit within a given set of dimensions or to match the size of an existing object.

One quick and accurate way of achieving this is to action a transformation in the 'Transform' palette, then hit the keyboard shortcut for 'Transform again' repeatedly until a result is achieved, fine-tuning the transformation values if necessary to achieve a precision result.

Makes more sense in practice than when put into words, and can be invaluable for manipulating a selection in circumstances where numerical accuracy is key, and when simply dragging a selection by a corner handle won't provide the required degree of accuracy.

Key features required to make this and similar processes work are:
1. The ability within the transformation palette to set an origin for a transformation.
2. The facility to specify independent X and Y transformation values, and for these values to be viable up to two decimal places.
3. The ability to independently control from within the transformation palette whether a selection's contents, fills and strokes are transformed or not.
4. The software must remember all transformation parameters actioned within the transform palette as mentioned above, so that all combined aspects of the transformation can be immediately repeated using the 'Transform again' command.
5. The original transformation and subsequent instances of 'Transform again' must operate consistently on individual selections, multiple selections and grouped objects.
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Re: Your expectations

Postby PaulBI » Thu Jul 19, 2012 12:59 pm

A program that lets me control what elements appear on the page, when and how rather than making assumptions about where in the overall (creative) process I might want to do anything.

Layers that can be moved and viewed/locked independently;
Multi-page (inc different sizes);
Transform palette with repeat and copy/apply function;
Object selection through overlapping objects;
Controllable pdf export;
Ability to import old (and recent!) FreeHand files...

.... and most of what others have already asked for. But these top the list of things that keep bringing me back to FreeHand and they appear so simple...
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Re: Your expectations

Postby Aspensound » Thu Jul 19, 2012 1:00 pm

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Re: Your expectations

Postby slopes » Thu Jul 19, 2012 1:06 pm

As Quasado are posting short videos demonstrating the functions of Expressive, I wonder if it would not be very useful to their team if seasoned FH users respond in kind and post videos showing the routines in FH which are most useful to them - and which make the program so superior to AI?

There are several freeware apps which allow a user to capture live sequences of their screens - and perhaps the Freehand Forum could have a section set aside for these videos? One (moving) picture is worth a thousand words - especially when many people use different words to describe similar things.
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Re: Your expectations

Postby qwasian » Thu Jul 19, 2012 1:38 pm

Keep it clean. The Adobe strategy is to add more and yet more pallets to the already morbidly obese UI. My click rate in Illustrator is twice that of Freehand and no matter how familiar I get at the ai interface I feel as though I am wading through mud. Freehand by contrast is fast crisp and simple to use.
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Re: Your expectations

Postby matt » Thu Jul 19, 2012 3:27 pm

I think that Brad Kozak (captaindigital) should be a Project Director. His ideas are perfectly meshed with what Expressive should be.

The Mac OS X video that went up on YouTube today leaves me a little worried. Performance looks poor, what with all that flashing of the shapes on the page.
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