15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Vector + raster graphics - results very quickly,
This review is from: DrawPlus X5 (PC) (CD-ROM)
I am a long-time GIMP user and I'm very happy with this program. Comparing to other 'Linux' apps regarding graphics, it became really proffessional. I'm really sorry to say that I can't tell this about other Linux software, both Vector and Raster.
However, for 2 months I was testing different software for graphics. I wasn't sure what I was looking for besides the fact I wanted the results to be FAST. GIMP is very powerful, but sometimes some vector-like features, especially for quick business or web graphics, are really needed. Otherwise, I wasted much time, doing in GIMP things that (intuitively) should be quick. After too many wasted hours, which could be spent much more efficiently, I decided that there must be better, additional solution.
I tried Linux's free Scribus and Inkscape. Some things were really faster than in GIMP alone, but both had not-intuitive (to me) interface, hadn't many needed functions and, at last, some regular things I was doing required to many clicks and work from me. So I didn't stop looking around. And (shortening the rest of the story) I came across Serif's DrawPlus X5.
Before I bought it, I tested the free version. I was amazed by the difference in creating graphics. Everything was really fast plus it had every single feature I used in both Scribus and Inskape. Results was also very fast. I could focus on graphics, not on technicals, which improved time as well as quality of things I was doing. Least to say, for the first time I succeded with impressing my family by my graphics work and heard 'wow'.
After some time, I also came to the conclusion that the name "DrawPlus" doesn't tell everything about the program. Besides of creating designs (like for small DTP), documents, vector graphics, business graphics and drawing, it has also powerful features for raster graphics, PDF-creating, for animation, web-desining, project outlines and (not mentioned and maybe even not discovered by the Serif) - for great presentation. Although people are accustomed to PowerPoint-like files for this purpose, I discovered that with DrawPlus graphics tools, animation tools, document-creation and easy and useful text management, it allows to create presentation (as PDF, movie file or Flash, though I just don't like the last one and don't use it) even easier than in dedicated software.
To me, one of the main assets is, otherwise than in Scribus, that all FUNCTIONS are EASILY ACCESSIBLE.
It really saves your time, allowing to be (much!) more efficient.
At this time, after about 1,5 month of using DrawPlus, it helps me with:
1. WEB DESIGN (to me, graphics software is better for this purpose than dedicated software, like, let's say, WebPlus, also from Serif)
2. PDF CREATION (at last I have WYSIWYG - What You See Is What You Get - management of the publicated documents so that they look much better now)
3. SMALL DTP (easy to create different things, from pictures
4. OUTLINES (DrawPlus has many tools which makes it easy to create, for example, outline of the project timeline)
5. PRESENTATIONS (clear, easy to manage, easy to develop, and looking really good)
...and sometimes ADDITIONAL STUFF, like visualisations.
One of my favourite features is changing JPG or PNG into a Vector, with many features user can control, including selecting types and number of colours.
One WARNING: because DrawPlus is WYSIWYG, it really requires at least some basic talent and sense of graphics, colours, outline etc. Without it, your audience just might not be impressed, regardless the software you use; but you can always then use standard recommendations (like for books DTP), but then you don't need the software like DrawPlus, as its features are
In a word - I'm really surprised Serif's Software is not as known as other (particularly American) graphic softare companies. It is exactly what I was looking for. The only thing I regret is that I hadn't this program earlier. Now I use GIMP and DrawPlus together, often on the same project.