I was recently browsing through various Linux news sites and bumped into this article, a taste of a comic done in Krita, the KDE painting and image editor application, which is part of the KOffice suite. Now I rarely use image editors, and I'm totally untalented at it, but when I do, I use GIMP for basic cropping, coloring or other simple stuff. Anyway, I remembered I only tried Krita once, in KDE 3, and I was a little dissatisfied with it (can't remember exactly why), so at the time I decided to stay with GIMP. This is why this article brought Krita again in my attention, so I decided to give it a spin and see how it looks like.
In this overview I'm going to talk about Krita 2.2.2, which comes included in the Ubuntu 10.10 Beta repositories. Being a full-fledged image editor, Krita comes with many tools and features needed by an image manipulation program, and to list a few.
- support for various file formats, including PNG, JPEG, BMP, PDF or TIFF
- selection and painting tools which include various shapes like line, rectangle, ellipse, in addition to freehand paint
- many brush engines
- filters: raindrops, blur, sharpen, mosaic, to list a few
In addition to these, Krita allows you to change brightness/contrast, rescale, crop and rotate images, export the result to various image formats or PDF, take advantage of the split-window option, or work with layers.
When starting Krita for the first time, it will ask you to choose the size and color model for the default template (just like probably 90% of the KDE applications, I had to resize the window and widgets inside it in order to get a good screenshot, but this is off topic).
I mentioned some of the good parts of Krita. Now, I don't know if this is only me, but when applying an effect I got a preview on the image, but after closing the window the image wasn't modified. I tried the Apply and Close button too, but same result. After this, Krita crashed. This happened without exception many times.
Final thoughts: Krita is nice, but it currently crashes a lot. It's frustrating to hit apply to an effect and then watch the program crash, and I think this needs a lot of working, because at the time being, it's in an almost unusable state. Other than that, Krita is a decent replacement to GIMP (or it will be, as soon as they get the crashes fixed), especially if you want an application to integrate well with your KDE desktop.