My topic may be completely moot if things have changed, so I have to disclose that I haven’t used anything newer than 4.1.7, though I’ve been through the source for 4.2.9 and some bits of later versions. Until I upgrade hardware and update my OS, I’m stuck with this limited perspective. If things are different in newer versions, just let me know.
I don’t do much painting anymore, but I’m slowly migrating away from GIMP, and I have to admit that I find the categorization of the blend modes to be inaccurate and confusing.
Modes like ‘vivid light’, ‘linear light’, ‘pin light’, ‘soft light’, ‘flat light’, ‘super light’ and ‘hard light’ don’t belong in the Lighten category. They’re bidirectional modes, darkening and lightening over equal fractions of their domain. I suppose that’s almost true for ‘fog lighten’ and ‘fog darken’ as well, but I admit those are a bit of a special case.
Why is ‘overlay’ in the Mix category when it’s the transpose of ‘hard light’? I’d figure they would be together.
Why is ‘inverse subtract’ in the Arithmetic category, when it’s a duplicate of ‘linear burn’ (in the Darken category)?
What is the uniquely defining characteristic of modes in the Mix or Negative categories?
It’s hard to come up with uniformly definitive common characteristics that allow the various modes to have an unambiguous place in the structure. I know because I’ve been struggling to do it myself for my own project. I can share my own tentative approach if anyone thinks it would be useful.
Do other users find this confusing, or has everyone just become accustomed to things the way they are? Is categorization by mathematical properties too divorced from usage-driven categorization for most people? What are your thoughts?
Oh and Hi. First time posting here.