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What is unique and different in Krita compared to other programs

If this is your first foray into digital image creation, whether it is drawing, painting, vector-based or image manipulation then welcome to Krita. We think you'll find the application very easy to get use and we would recommend the Starting Krita section for a first timer.

However, chances are pretty good that you have been using another graphics application before. It might be Photoshop, Gimp, Corel Painter or In any case, Krita will seem very familiar to you at first sight, and then you might start noticing differences in the behavior of some tools. Some good, some perhaps confusing.

Krita is a raster based digital painting application focused on digital painting, hence the tools in Krita are fundamentally designed to solely aid painting and creating image from scratch, where as tools such as Photoshop and Gimp have feature set targeting image-manipulation, web-designing etc.

Common tools and how they work in Krita

The following tools you may have seen in other programs, but Krita has a unique take on them:

Brush tool
Krita has a robust and variety of brush engines namely
  1. Pixel Brush
  2. Color Smudge Brush
  3. Sketch Brush
  4. Bristle Brush
  5. Shape Brush
  6. Spray Brush ,
  7. Hatching Brush
  8. Grid Brush
  9. Curve Brush
  10. Dyna Brush
  11. Particle Brush
  12. Clone Brush
  13. Deform Brush
  14. Filter Brush
  15. Chalk brush

Where Photoshop and gimp have only one. The brush editor of Krita provides ability to control many properties of a brush like flow opacity, scatter ,spacing individually according to the pressure sensitivity and tilt of the graphic pen.

Krita also has a filtering system for the brush presets and a resource manager that allows you to import and manage resource bundles.

Erasing in Krita
Many applications have a separate eraser tool but Krita has erase as a blending mode which gives the ability to turn any brush or drawing tool into eraser. User can turn any brush or drawing tool into eraser just by pressing E key. Even the gradient tool can be turned into eraser.
Some users get confused while they erase over the first layer of Krita. Krita by default erases pixels and reveals checkered pattern denoting alpha, The first layer is not alpha locked by default like in Photoshop. However you can choose to hide the checkered board and show canvas color while erasing, This option is found while creating a new document as shown below


Blur and Dodge tools
Unlike other applications, Krita doesn't have separate Dodge and burn tool. Instead it has them under Filter brush engine.
Krita has seperate type of layer called Vector layer you can create vector paths, shapes and text on this layer
Color management
If you are coming from Corel painter, Krita has a sophisticated colour management engine in Krita that allows you to go beyond just mere RGB and CMYK, and allows you to actually use the ICC profiles from you printer, or to choose for the VFX industry color management tool OCIO.
Layers for Gimp users
Our layer bounds are not fixed like in GIMP. the layer boundaries are flexible allowing the layers to extend as we paint beyond. Also any thing we paste gets on a new layer not in a floating layer unlike GIMP. In Krita you can select multiple layers and move , transform, group them.</li>
MIrror view
If you are a photoshop user you may be used to flipping the whole document to see a mirrored version of the document but in Krita it is just as simple as pressing M to flip the view, instead of transforming the whole image.
Clipping masks
Unlike photoshop Krita doesn't have a Clipping mask, instead it has a feature called 'inherit alpha'. You can enable Inherit alpha on a layer by clicking on the alpha icon Alpha-icon.png. it basically clips the content of the selected layer to the content of the bottom most layer of the stack. If you are confused you can read more about it in this tutorial here

Things that make Krita unique

Outside of common industry standard tools, Krita of course has things that make it unique.

Symmetry and drawing assistants.
Krita has various symmetry and drawing assistants, which help you to create kaleidoscopic designs, perspective drawings, fish eye designs and much more!
A huge list of various blending modes
Krita offers a wide variety of blending mode to composite your image.
Assigning color models to layers
A layer in krita can have its own color model, for example a lineart layer can be in greyscale while the rest of the layers can be in RGB orCMYK.
Clone layers
Users can clone and transform these cloned layers independently, and when you update the original, the clones will update along!
Wrap around mode
Krita has a wrap around mode for instant preview and creation of seamless tiles and textures.Just by pressing W key krita shows a live preview of seamless tiles.
HDR painting
Support for not just opening HDR images, controlling their exposure and gamma, but also picking and painting scene-reffered values on HDR images.

Check out the Basic Concepts page for more in-depth information on how Krita works as a medium.

This page was last modified on 22 July 2015, at 09:23. Content is available under Creative Commons License SA 4.0 unless otherwise noted.