The artist-programmer barrier and krita

This post no longer represents my views on the Krita development community. Please understand that anything you read is from the past, written in the context of a very stressful yet unrelated situation, and opinions have changed drastically.

This doesn’t excuse the things I’ve said and I’ve elected not to try and erase them. Instead I will wholeheartedly apologize to anyone I have offended with this post.

Always support your local open source developers.

Long rant feedback post warning.

Recently there was a thread that went wildly off topic, that ended up focused on the programmer vs artist dynamic within the Krita development workflow. If possible, I’d like to reopen this dialogue in its own thread so that we can have a discussion about it.

The original sentiment was that the Krita development workflow feels detached from artists, with a couple quantifiable examples such as the discontinued Krita Weekly report, and development Kickstarters falling out of style.

To start off, I’ll be spouting my own bias laden ideas on the matter. Feel free to skip this first paragraph if you don’t care about my credentials and just want to read my ideas.

About me
I am an artist and animator first and foremost, with 11 years experience in nearly everything remotely artistic. I’ve used Krita for going on 3 years now, having moved from 5 years of Clip Studio, 2 years of SAI, 3 years of Flash, and on and off with PS, AI, AE, Paintstorm Pro, Blender, Zbrush, Substance Painter, Unity and Black Ink for various specific projects or pictures.
On the flip side, I’m probably one of the few artists that has at least a bit of development knowledge. I wouldn’t call myself a developer, but I’d like to think I have enough experience to at least have a bit of insight into the process of development. Though my experience is mainly around website front/back end and orchestration such as Kubernetes, and I’ve never touched C++ so I haven’t been able to help much in the Krita front.

Far spreading, short reaching

My first gripe with Krita is that it is a jack of all trades and a master of none. If an artist colleague asked what Krita is best at, I don’t know if I’d be able to even come up with something. Except maybe price.
It is great software in a widely general sense, and notable for 3 main things:

  1. It is free
  2. It is open source
  3. It does a lot of stuff okay enough to let beginner artists experiment with art

But artists are diverse. Much like there are full stack devs, there are full stack artists. Artists who animate a little, paint a little, ink a little, make comics, concept art, textures, vectors, whatever else. But most don’t, most specialize. And I think the tools that Krita provides don’t allow the specialization needed to maintain these people or keep them around.

I cannot imagine that most artists who are a master of their respective trades find what they’re looking for in Krita. Some can, but then again there are masters of MS Paint as well who make great artwork with that. I don’t think the existence of great artists on Krita is a good argument that the program is in a good place right now. It needs to start targeting professionals needs, or it’s going to keep attracting jack-of-all-trades types like me or new artists. I’ll get to why this sort of targeting is important in a later section.

This lack of specialization kicks specialists off the platform and leads to a recurring theme I think we’re going to touch on a lot in this post:

Survivorship bias

There are a lot of great artists here, I see their portfolios and I’m amazed at what they’re able to create and paint and animate. That being said, I think there’s an inherent negative feedback loop where the program is tailored and reworked to accommodate the people who survived getting used to Krita, and unfortunately I think that’s a minority, and further unfortunately, I think they’re not usually specialists in their industries.

I believe this leads to Krita being reinforced in areas that are ironically enough, not as important. The people who first download Krita, get annoyed, then leave, don’t provide feedback. I’m someone who’s suggested Krita to many colleagues, professionals making a living off of their art, and got immediate feedback and complaints from them about why they refuse to use it. There are a lot of recurring problems that I think should be addressed that never do because these artists never actually complain on the forums. They just leave.

The problem then gets ignored on the forums because ‘not enough people think it’s a problem’. That’s wrong, a lot of people think it’s a problem. Everyone I’ve ever tried to get into Krita thinks it’s a problem. You’re just suffering survivorship bias because they never get into the program deep enough to care about giving their opinion.

Consider a poll that focuses on artists who don’t use Krita, and exactly why. I think that’s more productive than most ideas I see here. You might be surprised.

Artist-unfriendly development

I am not talking about the software itself. That’s for a different section or post. I mean the development process is difficult for artists to follow. I’m not sure how to fix that, I wasn’t around for Krita Weekly Report or just didn’t hear about it. Development, especially open source development, is tricky, and confusing, and naturally hard to follow. Artists don’t know what a git repo is, some might just think it’s a download site for free software. Let alone merge requests, landings, builds, betas, etc. They likely don’t use Linux, and while I consider programming a form of art, the thought processes and type of people behind both art and development are polar opposite unless you’re one of those few who’ve done both.

I’m an artist not a PR person, I’m not sure how to tackle this one. I just know if you want artist feedback, artist ideas, or artist involvement in development decisions in any way, whatever the project’s been doing definitely isn’t it.

Just as a recent example, and I can’t stress enough that I’m very happy for this update and the people who’ve put effort into it, but the recent animation sound design update.
What? You want feedback? Yes all that sweet feedback from the artists who

  1. Use Krita
  2. Use Linux
  3. Download test builds for feedback
  4. Can animate not only doodles but stuff that’s involved enough to require lipsyncing or other fine-grain sound design.

All 2 of them? How do you expect feedback from artists? Nearly everything in the entire Krita development workflow is this hostile to artist involvement. Do developers truly expect or want feedback from artists? Who is really making the decisions for what’s best for the program?
This leads to my next point:

Krita feels like it’s made by devs who think they know what artists want.

Some other user in regards to another open source software that I believe is having the same issue as Krita

With the exception of the few developers I’ve seen who are they themselves artists, the program as a whole feels like it’s going the way of GIMP, but as a replacement for SAI or CSP instead of Photoshop. There are many, many aspects of the program that feels like GIMP. And I can’t properly explain why that’s a bad thing, since I’m sure most devs reading this probably prefer GIMP. I get it, it’s a completely different mindset.

Shout out to the great devs that seem to work very closely with the artist community to rework tools to be as artist accommodating as possible. Still suffers survivorship bias but it’s a step in the right direction.

Artists don’t usually ask for features from Photoshop/CSP/whatever proprietary software because they’re hypnotized by corporate propaganda and marketing schemes into believing that dinglebop tool is superior. They actually believe the tool is useful in some way. I understand the frustration of sorting through the effortless ‘please clone X tool’ posts that don’t explain why it’s useful.

From an outside perspective, some of these programs have probably spent more money than Krita has ever received, purely on getting professional feedback about some random tool. And you’re going to ignore it? That consumer feedback is free, you can take it. They can’t patent things like drag-to-fill-multiple-spaces (thanks for adding that) or brush strokes saved as vectors (fingers crossed).

Doing things different for the hell of it is so beyond confusing to me. If it works, it works well, everyone loves it, it’s useful, it speeds up workflows, I don’t get why you wouldn’t look into it just because the dimwit on the forums worded his request like ‘Pls add dinglebop tool from Photoshop thx’. It’s like stack overflow users closing your question because someone else asked the same question but dumber and that original question doesn’t even answer yours.

Tangentially to features, this can even go into areas that are from a developer’s perspective completely pointless. UI animations. Smoother actions/panning/rotating. Less perceived input latency. More animated splash screen. Yes, they don’t do much. But artists are fickle and easily excitable, love to be inspired and amazed, and they love feeling like their programs (and websites, I’ve found) have emotion. You’d be absolutely floored at what some simple (from an outside perspective) tweaks or little animations could do. Apple figured this out and led the way in the creative sector forever until Windows finally got their crap together. This is the biggest telltale to me that Krita is made by developers first. It’s extremely useful but has no emotion.

Krita is underfunded

And who’s fault is that? Genuine question. Devs claims the artists simply don’t donate much, or that art isn’t as marketable as blender and 3d work, artists claims the devs don’t listen to them enough to warrant supporting it.
So what is it? I dunno.

I have some theories tho. Artists are not a high demand profession. Very, very few artists make a living off of their artwork. And those that do, probably specialize in something. As I covered in the first section, Krita is not for specialized artists. It simply doesn’t have the deep enough tools to accommodate them. It is inherently influenced by, and tailored toward hobbyists. Which is not inherently bad please don’t call me elitist. But if you want funding from artists, you need to make the program marketable by artists.

I donate to many open source programs, some big like Blender, some medium like ShareX, and some small like PostyBirb that aid me in distributing, marketing, and creating my works. I do this for several reasons.

  1. The program addresses a problem I have and offers a fast and intuitive way to fix it.
  2. The devs, when I do ask them something, are understanding and helpful, they feel like they are actually trying to provide a service to the user. Even when a suggestion fails, I feel as though a decent effort was given to explain why not, without using hand wavy excuses.
  3. Using the program feels snappy and responsive. At no point in time do I feel limited or roadblocked because of the program’s inability to utilize my hardware or because of poorly optimized functions.
  4. I wanted the software to continue the path it was going.

I am extremely hesitant to do the same for Krita, because I don’t know if I would personally agree on any of these points in reference to Krita. Despite using Krita arguably thousands of hours more than the others, unlike these other programs and sites, I don’t feel like Krita makes my life easier vs the alternatives. The closest I’d get to donating to Krita would be either commissioning a feature or donating to one or two specific devs directly who I feel take artists into consideration. I’d never donate to the Krita foundation directly with the way things are going.

It’s okay

While using Krita I constantly feel like it’s just good enough for me not to rage-quit it. Hiding and showing layers is slower than every other application but it’s just fast enough for me not to switch. The canvas pans at 300 FPS but it’s choppier than every other application, but just smooth enough for me not to switch. The animation tools are restrictive, but just featureful enough not to switch.

Same for everything. Everything in Krita feels like it’s just enough for me not to have a full blown breakdown over. It almost never makes me feel good about drawing. It solves all my drawing needs, technically, but never makes me go ‘yeah that’s fast and intuitive’. I’m genuinely trying to remember the last time in 3 years I was amazed at some feature I found in Krita and how well it performed, but I can’t. The colorize brush is kind of cool in a Stockholm syndrome kind of way, but pretty slow and lacks some pretty useful features. And I didn’t stumble on it and get amazed, I was forced to use it because the other coloring methods I was used to were so bad that I was instructed by a dev to use the colorize brush. So not only are my alternatives so bad that it’s advised not to use them, the one singular solution provided to me was also hard to work with.


I want to open this thread to get feedback from both sides of this weirdly divided sentiment, and hear about your own experiences, your own personal feelings toward what Krita is, what it wants to do, etc. Here are some baseline questions to help get a calm discussion going:

  • Do you think Krita is underfunded? Do you think more funding would make devs listen to artists more, work on code more, or both?
  • Proprietary software must listen to artists because artists pay their bills, this leads to the program naturally improving in ways that make the artists happy or the software explodes. Does Krita emulate this in any way? What reason does Krita have to make artists happy?
  • Do you think there even is a divide between developers and the artists of the community? Or am I just salty and not putting in enough effort to embed myself in discussions?
  • Do you think development should either focus on fixing the things Krita does that drives away artists, or focus on improving the things that current Krita artists already enjoy?
  • If you heavily specialize in a type of art like painting, animation, comics, vector, etc, do you feel like Krita provides enough tools to make it truly worth switching from a proprietary competitor? For instance CSP for comics, Photoshop for painting, CSP or Toonboom for animation, etc.
  • What do you think Krita is? What is is supposed to truly do amazingly besides be free and open? Or do you feel it is supposed to be a jack of all trades?
  • If everyone agreed that there’s a divide between what artists (both current and potential Krita users) and the devs want, do you have any suggestions or ideas for a way to bridge that gap?

Anyway that’s rant over for me. I’ve just been feeling this way for so long I finally had to get it out in the air. It likely won’t change anything at all or do anything, but if even one thing changes for the better it’d be worth it for me.

Edit: While I may seem angry I just want to clarify that it’s a righteous indignation born from wanting to see Krita succeed, prosper, and improve. I value and support all paid or volunteer workers on Krita’s source and without them we wouldn’t be here. Advanced, in-depth tools and features require a strong base and a lot of Krita’s features seem to be a decent base, they just need some love and care to find their usefulness.


I’m not considering me as an artist…
I don’t use Windows for many reason…
So, Krita is my only painting reference software and I’m happy with it :slight_smile:

But in general my point of view for all softwares I use is pretty simple:

  • I like it
  • It let me do what I want
    ==> I use it
    Otherwise I’m looking for another software :man_shrugging:

This work for any type of software: graphics, video, music, coding, office, utils…

I’m not sure to understand the goal of your topic, but I hope it won’t generate trolls, tensions, conflicts, disputes, swear words :slight_smile:



I’m hoping to open a dialogue about the direction Krita is taking as a software, and how that direction is influenced by artists.

I use a lot of software that ‘just works’ and I’m happy with it. If Krita is that to you, bless you.
2D artwork is one of my full time jobs and I likely have over 3000 hours in the Krita by now, spending upwards of 15-30 hours a week operating Krita’s many little functions.
I have come to long for more from the tools, and have had my soul and aspirations degraded over time by their semi-lacking functionality.


Krita is underfunded.

Krita is one of the software I use that do listen to the artist workflow.
I once come here with trivial request [flipping around cursor] , I know some who pop up with some other random things that are maybe mild but does help their use case. A developer/ contributor was free and since its a little thing they implemented it.

irrc the three view indent control was from that kind of request too.

This is one of the few community where if you request in not hostile manner , and its possible with what the team is currently focus on, it gets implemented.

deiflou develop enclose and fill - with us giving feedback. you link one thread where one of the main developer is taking feedback, there are another one like a thread suggestion for webtoons and comic panel floating around.

Outside of view contention - having a dedicated eraser tool [is one]. which are cause by the software software philosophy [in Krita most tool is a brush]. Right now we are seeing who winds in the meantime there are plugins contributed for this by other artist/dev i think it was Grum999

outside of main developer there are contributors, those contributors for obvious will implement what they wanted such is the nature of opensource.

I dont feel it honestly. I feel the devs are so open - that one of the random request thread gets implemented if I blink my eye.

Also there are many different 2D artist with different needs. There are few developer, some contributor. Outside of being underfunded, krita is undermanned. To whom do Krita need to listen to have the software they wanted.

Its not like krita has dedicated dev for animation, vector, digital painting, photo manip, traditional painting emulation. Who’s problem should the few dev focus on? Obviously for a better development they would need to choose which one they want to focus on in a development release and work on those feature. Sometimes a feature cannot be applied because - the underlying code need to be reworked [such is the case with text tool]

This release cycle based on tiar post - those are vector, webtoon, panels, and other illustration feature that favor webtoon/manga style works.
Comic Panel New Feature development
Ideas for Comics workflow including WebComics
Perspective Grid
Assistant Tools 1
Assistant Tools 2

Ill give you an example where a feature was down 50/50 and artist could not agree.
Inclusion of layer state in undo. Other point of contention is vector and text was due for some love badly [couldn’t be touch before due to some needed work with the inner codes of krita - as far as i know]

We sometimes go and think we know what all other people wanted - and i admit it , i do that too. But you have different need, I have different need. We have different vision of krita and we cannot all be pleased all at the same time.

I think sometimes we need to stepback, and look how realistic - how fast can something be develop given the number of devs and contributor. Something easy in our eyes as artist can be very hard to implement.
There are bugfix need to be done, feature need to be maintained and new features under development.
The team cannot focus solely on bugfix [user wants and request new things / but they can’t neglect that. What is a feature if its buggy - no feature have been develop with no bug even after bugtesting such is the nature of software dev].

Realistically not everything you or I wanted and things needed will be implemented.

  1. Because there are other who wanted something else and its not only krita user vs requesting feature from different software. There can also be those who want software a approach over software b to be the one copied over krita.

Krita can never be the software 100% suited for me or for you - because it caters to more than just me or you. I myself I want quick pressure toggles ;A; , a not wonky text tool, etc…

With that saying yes sometimes it feels you don’t get heard. ehem bucket fill with enclose lines.
but compare to other software - Krita feels alot more open and have user involve into the process/ and yes the krita user will happen to get more say because they are using it and testing it and they are most likely to give feedback. Their voice get heard more because they are talking more.

As for contributing as artist, Join thread discussion about feature - create feature request with use cases and examples that is not in antagonistic tone. Drop by plugin thread proposal - some of what you need might be being develop there.

GL, i just woke up and need to get some breakfast.


I’ve had my fair share of quickly fixed bugs, bugs that have been around for years, quickly added small features, turned down features, etc. I understand, I do. I know I just look like some dude complaining his ultra specific request didn’t get added. I highly respect and admire the devs who work with me and everyone else at the same time to triage when some new bug surfaces, and I thank devs whenever physically possible when talking about features they had added that I use regularly just to drill home that that effort was not wasted.

But I think this frustration is coming from somewhere deeper. I’m not asking for a feature, I’m just asking for some sort of hope.

You say:

Any. Absolutely any of them. Make any of them amazing. I legitimately don’t care which, making literally any of those you listed noticeably faster or better in any way would be a plus in my eyes.

Krita is spreading outward, and rarely if ever growing up. Instead of improving the current tools, we get new ones that accomplish close to if not the exact same thing as previous ones, with no workflow or optimization improvements over the already existing solution.

While all your examples are great, I would consider most of those very minor things that I personally wouldn’t get up in arms over. Yes a cooler text tool or pressure toggles or stuff like that would be neat, and I’ve already spoke my piece about the eraser toggle, but I’m aiming a bit more at the core with this thread.

because other user requested them, mostly from those coming from other software - and a contributor is already working on it. Contributors are free do add what they want as long as it pass merge check.

I do understand the frustration of it growing outwards while the core is getting neglected. In my case i want krita to focus on feature that are for painting and 2d illustration and polishing those feature. Like for me if i want vector i open inkscape, other want the vector tools in krita to work as good of that in inkscape. :sweat_smile:

A complete rehaul of resource system was just recently finish [and that still giving bugs].

You are frustrated because the core is not getting polished while some is getting frustrated because feature they wanted is not getting added. :sweat_smile:

I dont think we can get an answer that will satisfy us. What we wanted and how the dev cycle works as of now. This same thing happened in blender years ago 2.5-2.6 iirc (new feature getting added but other not polish) and i think i saw it happen to some other software - i use to frequent modo forum.

New feature are shiny thing, bugfix and maintenance are not fancy until that affect productivity. its frustrating, but i hope that doesnt make you lose hope.

Off topic but tangentially related - i recently upgraded inkscape and the padding on right panel icons and the move of snap panel is making me cry. its something little but affects my enjoyment of a software I love. It really does get frustrating fast when new feature was ahead of making sure something simple that affects productivity is not getting polish or fix.

I dont really have idea how to fix that in satisfying way. I just enjoy things as it is and help in bug reporting.


In fact, most people understand “free” as only “0$”.
Even as well-known as Blender is now, the number of people donating is small compared to the actual large number of users. You can see how many individual donations have been made by blender.

Then krita is indeed weaker than other commercial software in some places, such as the Android version has not been remade for the interface of keyboardless tablet devices.

I am pessimistic that the current state of donations will continue for quite some time.
Until a series of planned (I think should be planned) things are done.

Things like better text tools, a comic grid tool, a new interface for keyboardless tablets, clipping masks…

Supported by current donations, the number of full-time developers is very limited.

So the current development speed and the existence of priorities I think is understandable.

If there are enough donations, I think developers will have more time to communicate with artists.
More exchanges may be able to clarify some issues.
However, even now, developers are still trying to communicate with feedback.
From my personal experience, I have actually communicated with developers more than once.
(There are also some posts that have no response at all, including other users who have not responded.)

2.Commercial software doesn’t necessarily listen to users’ suggestions.
There are really many examples, whether it is painting software or 3D modeling software, or games…
For example PS, on windows, PSD cannot provide preview images, because adobe forcibly promotes bridge.
Very, very many users need to provide PSD preview images on windows, but how does Adobe do it?
Another example is the game, D encryption is notorious.

I do not deny that commercial software is developed with reference to user suggestions.
But only for reference at least.

3.There must be differences between developers and users.
Such disagreements are unavoidable, and there are disagreements among users.
For example, I’ve heard people think that krita takes up too much storage, why not delete the extra features and make it as small as sai.
For situations like this, I think it’s all too normal to have disagreements.

And some are communication problems. I personally have met some users in the local community who can’t express clearly, so that I can’t understand what problems the other party encountered.

Good communication helps reduce disagreements.

4.There is no conflict between krita improving existing functions and adding new ones.

The two are not opposites, but manpower is limited.

I think krita has its pros and cons.

I can understand the discomfort you find all kinds of inconveniences when using krita.
I also think that some parts of krita are really not good enough, including missing features, features that should be improved, etc.

With more money like blender, it’s much faster to develop than before, whether it’s improving features or adding new ones.

5.For me krita does lack some features.

Some of the features I wanted in the past have been implemented, but there are still some that have not been implemented.

Also, about switching, do you mean full switching?
Personally, software can be mixed.
(Because there is no clipping mask, the mixing software needs extra processing of inherited alpha, which I personally find annoying.)

I think krita can completely replace some software in some use cases, but also completely irreplaceable in some cases.
This depends on the specific use case, and everyone’s needs are different.

6.I think krita is painting software.
I didn’t use krita at first, but other commercial software.
I started using krita just because the translation got better, so I started experimenting with it.

In the process of using it, I gradually discovered some unique features of krita, such as the HSY graphics color picker. This allows me to easily control the visual brightness.

No software can meet the needs of all users, and krita will never be a universal tool.
But I think in the future krita will be suitable for more users than it is now, because krita is always improving.

7.About disagreements.
As I said earlier, more good communication reduces disagreement.

In the end, I think the current krita predicament is something like:
I need to level up to defeat the boss easily, but defeat the boss to level up.
So I had to slowly hone my skills until I defeated the boss.

(It is also similar to how blender did before 2.8, silently developing until it accumulates enough and then it will be much better.)


This. Most see what blender is now - but being a roaming member of BA from 2.49 to atleast 2.7. I saw the same sentiment OP has pop up there. Alot of what we see discourse here had happened to them, including the new feature - maintenance and polishing. ah such days, I should really sit down and study it again.


In fact, it is only similar. There are still differences between 3D software and 2D software.

I just wanted to express that krita hasn’t accumulated enough to erupt.

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I really do hope that Krita is in its ‘Blender 2.X’ state currently. It does feel as though it’s in a catch 22, it must get donations to improve, but it also must improve to get steady donations.

I want it to improve ‘in general’ so badly that it’s causing me this distress and I needed to get it out, so sorry if it just seems like I’m angry about some random bug or feature, I swear it’s more general than that.

If you mean the refactoring of resource management.
For English users, it doesn’t seem like much has changed.
For users like me whose native language is not English but Chinese, after the rewrite, I can use Chinese to name resource names and labels.
(It actually allows more users to name resource names and labels in their native language.)
Of course it also brings some other advantages.

Some improvements or new features, if you don’t need it, it’s hard to understand why.
I also sometimes get confused about improvements or new features.

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I’m excited for the resource management changes, I’ve been lightly following along with those since they started in Krita 5. I think it will be very cool to be able to more easily and efficiently share resource packs with other artists, hopefully it will spur on a new exchange site or group specifically for resource sharing.

Despite the fact that I’m excited for this, I don’t currently have any plans for ever using resource management or a tagging system. I don’t use preset brushes, I don’t download brushes. The first thing I did in Krita was delete all preset brushes and resource packs and make my own brushes from scratch. I can view all my brushes on one window.
So I know I’m capable of appreciating improvements like this even if they don’t benefit me myself in any conceivable way.


As I learn more about krita, I will find more areas where krita needs to be improved.

So I can totally understand you saying this just to make krita better.

But it looks like you, like me, are not capable of participating in development.

So I think we should just do what we can do.
For example, when a bug is found, report it well.
Another example is helping new users.

It’s frustrating that these things sometimes seem unanswered, but we should keep at it.
Every user who is willing to contribute in their free time is important.

In addition, I also understand the discomfort that the new version of krita does not update what I want.
Objectively krita does get better all the time, although the changes aren’t necessarily better for everyone.


Yes, I totally think so.

In the past, krita had a total of 2 full-time developers(and I remember that developers still need to work part-time), and you will find that many requests will accumulate for many years. Although it is much faster now, there are only 9 full-time developers in total. Two of them are in charge of animation and one is in charge of Android… Under the limitation of manpower, the progress speed will always appear slow.

If there is more money to hire full-time developers, many projects will have special personnel in charge. For example, I have reported at least a dozen bugs in the GMIC sector, which is in the charge of a specially assigned person, and they have been responded to and fixed. But no one cares about the bug of Mypaint brush. Because it comes from gsoc, no one is continuously responsible for it.

I don’t think so at all. For Photoshop, users’ wishes are basically ignored. Someone requests fireworks’ blending modes (a software purchased and discarded by Adobe) in the Photoshop forum. This is readily available, but no one cares. CSP’s liquefaction tool has been requested for at least 5 years, which is too outrageous for a commercial software.

I think developers will pay attention to and evaluate the time it takes to improve or develop a function, but artists will not.

I think the former, such as resource management and rewriting of text system, is also for this purpose. But this basically takes a lot of time.

As for the painting, I think krita is the strong one. Paintbrush, color picker, non-destructive editing, blending modes, unique filter… Photoshop is a complete graphic editing software. Its advantages come from the development of many users, and there has been little improvement in the painting function in 10 years. For professional painting software, I think the only functional rivals are CSP and paintstorm.

For vectors, I remember that this is not within krita’s vision. The current vector tools still seem to be left over from many years ago, and there is not much improvement. And in the future, I think it will be like the vector brush of CSP, rather than close to vector software such as Inkscape

I don’t know much about animation. I think it lacks convenient coloring tools. I don’t know whether developers will be free after rewriting the audio system. Or Deif will make further progress here

As for the comic, I think it doesn’t meet my expectations at present. At least making a Japanese style cartoon will be troublesome. Now there is not even a special person responsible for the development of comic modules! The good news is that TIAR will consider it after finishing the assistant related work.

As mentioned above, krita’s painting function seems to me powerful enough. And compared with some seemingly useless updates of other software, its development speed makes me more excited. If CSP had updated liquefaction earlier, I might not have paid attention to other software. Now they seem to be engaged in the linkage function with mobile phones, which in my opinion is also irrelevant.

I have some posts with feedback but no reply. I hope developers can take the time to reply with a sentence or two.


@Ralek Would you go a little more into what you mean when you say Krita isn’t deep/specialised enough? To me, it seems like it is a pretty deep digital painting tool with some support for animation and photo editing. (I do not mention text layout :smiley: )

Is it that it’s not specialised or that you would like it to be specialised in e.g. animation?


One of my favorite topics for discussion. “Direction of Krita development”. And here we are again…

We just all want different things. And everyone has their own truth. Some of us are just stuck in Krita. There are such features here that they simply do not allow you to switch to another software. They’re so cool. But then we see the feature somewhere else. It’s cool there too. But we don’t want to leave Krita. We ask to add those features here. Otherwise it will be completely stupid. We will have to go to another software developer and ask them to add features from Krita. I imagine how I explain something to Adobe.
I mean, it’s absolutely normal for a user to ask for something. Developers just need a clear direction. Idea. But we have an open source. Someone made binary overlay modes for fun. Someone is a student at GSoC. Someone is promoting comics. Someone animation. And these guys are engaged in indie game development. Someone suggests expanding the capabilities of the vector in a raster editor. It’s turning into a legacy mess. I agree that developers should decide on the direction. Versatile development is also an option, you just need to announce it. So that there are no questions about it.

My wishes. I want the direction of illustration and concept art. This is an audience of freelancers and indie studios. And this direction is almost ready.
And the direction of animation and all sorts of vectors, comics… It’s all wrong. It needs to be completed and redone for several more years. And I don’t see how to explain to artists why they use Krita in these directions. There is better software for animation. There’s nothing to say about the vector, there’s no chance.
My dream is a blend if option. Fill option in layers. This will increase the possibilities for the concept. A few filters for working with photos. To expand the capabilities of matte painting. To show the professionals that they can completely calmly switch to Krita from Photoshop. For pure illustration, this is of course more features for brushes. More performance.

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I feel that your example regarding the recent audio development is misdirected:

  1. Well, yes of course. Do you expect them to find artists who don’t use krita and then ask those people to learn how to use it to see if the audio development in the test build is a good improvement?
  2. That is a good point. However, it’s easier to build it for Linux than for Windows and there is personal time pressure as seemed to be indicated in the topic.
    Maybe there will be a Windows build in the near future.
  3. ??? That is easy so it’s not a limiting factor. Unless you expect them to go to people’s homes and install it on computers and say, “There, test that for us”.
  4. I tested it, in a small and quick way in a short time, even though I’m not an ‘artist’. I happened to have a specific test animation in my collection of ‘stuff’ that’s very fine-grained. It’s not difficult to make something like that. Anybody who’s making sound animations at the moment (and having sync problems) would be able to see if that test build was an improvement - subject to the Linux limitation of course.

One obvious answer is to say that the developers should do the testing but that particular problem is very hairy and needs a wide variety of users to test it properly.
Also, after some time of bitter experience, especially with software like krita, a developer knows that testing by many different users must be done with any new development.

So, how do you get feedback from ‘artists’? I thought it happened here and maybe in other places that I don’t happen to go to.

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What I personally don’t understand is why governments are not investing in FOSS. Its an investment that benefits the community at large. So many people are nowadays dependant on good software, having innovation locked behind the walls of commercial vendors (some of which clearly evidence practices of profit maximisation by minimising development investments) is far from optimal.

For developed countries, paying the bills for a dozen software devs would barely make it into the books - it’s not that large of a sum for countries really.
FOSS could and maybe should be leveraged in education, so students can work on actual sotware that will actually be used beyond just getting a grade.

That said, I think it’s just a matter of time until devs start working on critical new features. If that feature is one you are invested in, that’s when you shoukd definitely participate on the forums @Ralek.

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Cause FOSS doesn’t contribute to political campaigns?

That isn’t to say there aren’t some governments using FOSS and contributing, but as you can imagine they’d obviously favor those who line their pockets.

A lot of great feedback and discussion so far, I’ve learned a bit and been tweaking my expectations and ideas. Thanks everyone!

Artists can* not. That’s not their job. That’s not even their field.
One of the jobs of devs is to assess how much work a suggestion or idea takes to develop. They do this pretty well, as far as I can tell. I mean I would hope so. The problem is after that. The next step is to take the assessed ‘difficulty’, and compare it to the assessed ‘need’, and come up with a conclusion on whether it is worth the effort, and where it belongs in the upcoming versions.

This is where I honestly think the entire process falls apart. Devs routinely undervalue what artists want, and they decline or put off ideas because they are ‘too much work’ for the perceived ‘need’.

Someone in the previous thread suggested a great idea- a voting board, easily accessible to artists, where you are able to suggest and vote up on ideas you as an artist would like added or looked at. As far as I can tell the only way Devs know right now if something is desired or not is either by guessing or counting on their fingers or searching how many times they’ve been asked.

Yeah, once a program gets too big it starts to suffer the same problems as open source software, because like OSS they realize they don’t have to listen to what their users want.

This is kind of what I’d hoped, adding a ““vector”” layer that allows regular brushes, but stores their underlying stroke data as vectors would help with frame by frame animation more than you can know. And I know because it was the most glaring issue after moving from CSP.

This is a good example of tool creep. It’s like feature creep, but what Krita is currently doing and what I just ranted about.

Krita in general lacks convenient coloring tools. Forget animation. Animators do not need a ‘super smart multi-frame color fill tool’, we just need a working fill tool in general. Fix the fill tool we already have. Make it viable for anything other than aliased fully enclosed all black untextured linework. It’s probably absolute bare minimum in terms of features right now. (I wouldn’t even have a single use for it if it wasn’t for the color reference layer option)

Guess what, once you make the basic fill tool lightning fast, make it completely fill the area, give it gap handling and fill-to-center for linework, you don’t need a super duper niche animator-only colorize tool. Now you’ve solved several problems at once and made not only animators happy, but literally nearly everyone who uses the program. You’ve gotten so wrapped up on whether you could you forgot if you should.

To properly answer this I’d have to come up with a core feature set for each possible specialized art type, and I’m not about to do that. What I mean by this is that different artists have different workflows of producing artwork.
Some people paint from scratch, they use big brushes to block in large areas of color and then slowly work their way more and more detailed.
Some people do a character concept art approach, starting with a sketch layer and then inking in over top of it. Comic artists follow a similar workflow.
Animators have specific scenes where they work their way down from keys to extremes, all the way down to however many inbetweens they’d like.
There are dozens more workflows that Krita is used for that I’m not going to list. Krita provides tools and the ability to do all of these.

But it has no tools to actually make any of these faster or more streamlined in any viable way. It is hostile to people who perfect these workflows, unless they accept compromise. This is why I say in the OP that Krita is primarily hobbyists, most people who spend enough time in the program to earn a living through it alone realize its limitations, try to improve it with their suggestions, then give up and move elsewhere when met with hostility.

I am not a master at every workflow Krita has, far from it, so I can only make suggestions in the areas I have hit a wall. To many that probably looks like me just whining that my specific ideas aren’t implemented, which is why I’m trying not to make any actual suggestions in this thread. But I’ve spoken to many artists who’ve moved away from Krita for various reasons, many with completely different styles or workflow, and they all seem to hit that wall too. I believe it’s a systemic issue.

Note: These next few are not about the animation patch, but recent ‘features’ in general.

This kind of backwards dev-always-right thinking is exactly what I’m talking about. You’re wording this entire rebuttal as if the build is already set in stone. What if artists had a problem with it? What if they had a better idea to handle something in a way that fit better into a workflow? What if something in an update was what drove artists away to begin with? Obviously animation sound isn’t going to be one of these times, but if you think this way about it I can easily see it used in other times.

It’s like we’re spoon fed updates whether we like it or not with barely any chance of a discussion on the matter. (Save for the updates that explicitly did that here, where the devs are actively communicating with artists and gathering feedback)

For a forum that puts so much emphasis on ‘explaining how a new feature will fit into your workflow’, you sure don’t seem to care about ‘fitting into a workflow’ then pushing updates yourselves. How did the update fit into your animation workflow when you tested it?
A massive, overwhelming burden of proof is on us for making a suggestion. If we so much as say ‘this way would make my life easier’ we better have an essay and a infographic and 10k hours of practice backing it. This is a dev-first environment.

Considering most of the things I’ve seen wiggle into new updates, I just kind of assumed most things around here didn’t. Unless it was one of those specific threads like for the assistants.

Not wrong, but those, like many other aspects of Krita, need a solid, featureful, and very firm, end goal.
Let’s take animation for example because it’s what I’m most familiar with.

Animation software? It’s simple. We used to do it on paper. Frame by frame animators (what Krita has said they are targeting), don’t need a lot. We need very few things, with very few features, and most of them are already down pat and working great in the current version of Krita. Personally I think that Krita should ‘finish’ animation, and work elsewhere until it garners a larger animation following.

In order to ‘finish’ animation, I think it still misses some very major features. How it doesn’t have them is beyond me, is ‘Hey, sometimes things move between frames but aren’t redrawn’ a feature?

This is also a good example of ‘specialization’ from earlier. An animator would look at that and say ‘yeah, that’s practically 30% of my entire animation work’. Yet it’s not in Krita. Either the devs don’t know how important it is to frame by frame work, or they don’t care enough. This leaves an entire workflow hostile. Animating in Krita anything more than a loop is hostile, and it is difficult to use Krita for animation because of this lack of specialization.This is just one example on one ‘specialization’, but nearly every aspect of Krita runs into something like this when you really get into a professional workflow.

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