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Microsoft Acrylic

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  • Microsoft Acrylic

    Download here:

    Free beta. Someone try it out for us.
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    Take responsibility for learning

  • #2
    Evidently Acrylic is the beta name. It will probably reach market as Expression 4. In case you're unfamiliar with Expression, it's a vector-based painting app (seems to be an oxymoron, but try it and you'll understand). You can lay down a brushstroke of thick paint, close the file, open the file again, and edit the actual brushstroke.

    I tried Expression 2 and it was so slow I gave up in frustration. But that was two computers ago.
    Learn by teaching
    Take responsibility for learning


    • #3
      MSoft Acrylic - Expression 4 ...

      ... and the wonderful Expression 3, which Microsoft offered as a freebie for over a year, is no longer downloadable. Version 3 is very fast and very stable in my not-very-modern Win2K machine, and I took care to download several copies when it was being offered. The paintbrush-as-vector paradigm was worked out to perfection, but in these days of ample space and huge memories, it's hard to see the advantage over pixel-based painting. MSoft has apparently inflated the app with pixel ops, but if you own PhotoShop, why would you need them? And the small, beautifully executed Xara X1 really has no peer for vector work (However, it falls short of Expression when it vectors brushwork) Insofar as Acrylic is Expression 4, it seems written to make 'nineties users happy.


      • #4
        Just a reminder that Expression for Mac is still available on Version Tracker. I just downloaded it. I'm not an artist, but I like trying new things and this was an interresting app to try. I alwo downloaded Acrylic on my XP machine, but I haven't had time to try it there yet.



        • #5
          Here's an interesting article on Acrylic at CNET.


          • #6
            I was wrong.

            Still available is Expression 3. Go to the *Acrylic* site and click on "older versions". Version 3 is a complete app of great depth and versatility, and unlike any other graphics program. It utilizes algorithms that won an advanced degree for the program's principal developer. Ver 3 was the perfected app, fast and stable, whatever MSoft may have done with it after buying it from Creature House, its Chinese developers. To its credit, MSoft's freebie on their site has no time limit and is exactly as it was marketed by Creature House.

            The program has a serious learning curve, but the download includes an excellent .pdf manual and tutorials. The suggestion that it is a bloated version of MSoft Paint is nonsense. Once you get the hang of it ("Skeleton Strokes", both your own and those provided) you can delight in it for hours. The concept of vector efficiency and economy with pixel richness is unique to Expression (though Xara has its points along these lines; however Expression 3 is free and won't be available for long!) The links on the MSoft site offer some excellent third-party tutorials which may or may not still be available; the owner of the best of them (6 free lessons) warns that they would be coming down like several days ago. However when I looked on Saturday, they were still there.

            I've owned Expression since version 1. Version 3 runs like silk on my rig (Win2K SP3), and I have to keep myself from doodling with it at the expense of painting, my latest joy. I'm not an Expression wizard, but I can probably answer basic questions about it.



            • #7

              Expression is an awesome program, really creative type of thing. I use strokes from Expression 1.xx in version 3, thousands of strokes. It can give you the competitive edge over in the box thinkers. You can export to .ai/eps files pretty decently and no other program can treat type the way expression does. Get it!

              God Bless,
              Last edited by Rodi; 09-02-2005, 11:17 PM.


              • #8
                one note about acrylic. it requires service pack 2 in xp. (thus, i havent tried it yet).



                • #9
                  I grabbed Expression 3 and I adore it. My favorite is using that bitmap fill thingie for watercolour effects. But I still need more practice with it.

                  I'll probably try MS Acrylic, but doubt I'll keep it.


                  • #10
                    i downloaded expressions 3 last night and installed it and gave it a quick look today. interesting. vector based. had trouble at first getting any bitmap types to load, but then finally figured out you have to make a new vector THEN insert the bitmap into the vector.



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