posted by Thom Holwerda on Mon 8th Feb 2010 13:23 UTC, submitted by kragil
IconYou may remember that back in November last year, I wrote about the lack of a decent Paint.NET-like application for Linux (or, more specifically, for Gtk+ distributions, since Qt has Krita). As it turns out, this compelled Novell employee Jonathan Pobst to code a Paint.NET clone in Gtk+ using Cairo. Version 0.1 is here, and it's remarkably advanced for something so young.

"Over the holiday break, I stumbled upon this article from OSNews stating that there was a need for something like Paint.NET for Gtk," Pobst writes on his blog, "Having some experience with porting Paint.NET to Mono Winforms before, I knew that that was a massive task. But it still got me curious about Cairo and creating a layered canvas, since I had never played with Cairo or Gtk."

"After playing around for a few hours, I actually had a working paintbrush and canvas," he continues, "Intrigued by my success, I played around with it for a few more days. By the end of the week I had a nifty little paint program with a few features. Now, a month later, it's time to open my little project up to the world."

It's called Pinta, and it's currently at version 0.1 - in other words, a number of features are still missing. Its interface is very reminiscent of Paint.NET's, but other than the code for adjustments and effects (which is taken straight from Paint.NET), Pinta is original code. It's Gtk+, so it already runs on Linux, Windows, and Mac OS X.

You can obviously build the release from source yourself, but a SUSE .rpm is also provided. Using alien, it's relatively straightforward to convert the .rpm to a .deb for those of us using Debian-based systems (like myself). The .deb package created by alien works flawlessly on my machine.

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install alien
sudo alien -k pinta.rpm
sudo dpkg -i pinta.deb

Be sure to match the names of the packages, of course.

For a 0.1 release, this is already a great application - especially considering it's only seen a month's worth of development. I'm excited about what the future will bring for Pinta. It isn't specifically mentioned, but I'm sure Pobst could use a hand in development.

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