First day at Libre Graphics Meeting

So here I’m sitting at my desk at my “Cosy Studio” in the Therese CasgrainĀ  student housing facility/hotel calles Les Studios Hotel in Montreal. Too tired to do anything but nibble cherry tomatoes and drink a beer, after the first day at the Libre Graphics Meeting, 2011 edition.

Perhaps slightly less busy than last year, and I’m missing a lot of familiar faces, but the quality of the talks has been outstanding so far. I’m working on experimentally getting colord up and running on my OpenSUSE laptop so I can check whether I can generate Qt bindings for the dbus interface to experiment with integration in Krita.

If the number of questions people want to ask after a presentation is a measure of success, then Lukas’ Krita presentation was a huge success. By that metric, but also by any other metric was a huge success indeed! Lukas showed off all the new stuff we’ve created since LGM 2010 — and was followed by Animtim giving a workshop on creating a comic in Krita. The audience was completely silent as he used Krita’s mirroring feature, sketch brush, vector layers, hatching brush and color modes to quickly create the first panel for a comic. (But admittedly, I came away with notes on three points where Krita must improve, because Krita made Animtim fumble at times.)

Then we went per school bus to Lovell’s printing museum in the heart of old Montreal. This was an amazing visit. There are, apart from Dave Crossland and Nathan Willis, many, many type and press freaks in the libre graphics community. And pro’s, too, of course, like the Scribus team! I’m one of the self-confessed type and typography geeks, having made my first font when I was 16, for my first dot-matrix printer. Old printing machines, old type, the cauldron where monotype cast letters and linotype slugs where melted back into ingots.

Even more wonderful, our hosts, John Lovell, his wife, some retired printer employees and a young guy really, really digged what our LGM is about. We were all passionate, and there have been many great conversations this night. Apart from much, much useful and wonderful thing, osne thing I learned here is that sometimes people have difficulty finding the right free software application. John Lovell had never heard of Scribus yet — but he had been looking for an In-Design-like application. And we all know Scribus is in some important (for a professional) respects even better than In-Design!

And I got a real lead monotype cast “v”, in six points!