[CREATE] assets library
Jon A. Cruz
jon at joncruz.org
Thu Sep 27 20:07:59 PDT 2007
On Sep 25, 2007, at 1:53 PM, Jon Phillips wrote:
> This is the best spec I've every seen! JonCruz, what do you think of
> this easy to use color/swatch spec?
Well, I think there is a huge problem with it: It's trying to define
the wrong thing.
In general artistic design work, I normally hit a different
definition of "swatch". It's not just a color, it's a "sample" or
"material". It could be a simple solid ink color, or it could be a
heavy plaid cloth. Moving into software, "Gold" is another good
example. "Gold" is a texture, not a color (just ask the Blender
artists out there). From an artist/designer's viewpoint, they tend to
think in terms of a swatch book as "a collection of things I've
pulled together to use for this project". I *think* some of the
problem comes from saying "Pantone swatch book" and such but not
keeping in mind that it is just a subset of general "swatch books".
That is, it is a "swatch book but with only solid paint swatches".
Then again... I have used foil pantone books, so those definitely
fall into the "material, not just color" category.
Anyway, I'd suggest that we either go with the concept that a
"swatch" is a "material" rather than just a "color", or that we avoid
the term "swatch" altogether. Generally I favor going with a bit more
than just color alone.
For SVG work, we'd probably like to be able to include gradients and
patterns also. "Brushes" might also be nice... but I think those are
something a bit different. For the apps I've seen that differentiate
brushes from patterns, brushes get to be more of blobs of complex
And think of the use case. Say a comic artist is working on a
project. He would probably want a "swatch book" for each of his
characters, and perhaps one combining them. Then he might also want
to add a book per character per lighting condition ("daytime",
"nighttime", etc). When he went to use it, he might like to just
select "Fred's skin" and apply it to an area. Then "Fred's shirt" for
another. Those might just be simple RGB colors, or the skin might be
a simple gradient and the shirt might be a checked pattern.
However... the artist most definitely would benefit from being able
to define those books once and then just reference them from each of
the programs he uses to create things.
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