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Graphics with Linux

I use linux to download photos from memory cards, sorting them into the right folders automatically based on their EXIF information; backup photos on DVDs; automatically extract thumbnails, make reduced versions of photos, watermark them and embed digital IPTC/EXIF data.

This page has information about a few of the Linux tools I use to create the graphics and process the photographs on this website.

Canon Digital Rebel (300D)

This camera uses CompactFlash memory cards. I download the cards to my Linux PC using a ScanDisk imagemate card reader (model SDDR-91). It was recognized by Linux, and can be mounted. After inserting a CF card into the reader, I run: fdisk -l. There should be a new hard drive listed, such as /dev/sdb. I then mount the drive with:
mount -t vfat /dev/sdb1 /mnt/flash

Xfig

map of the city of Minneapolis, click to see the xfig file used to render this image This is a free vector drawing program which generates a textfile with the extension ".fig". I actually use this for making documents as well as graphics, because a fig file can be converted to a pdf file using: fig2dev -L PDF file.fig file.pdf. The fig file has vector and color information as plain text, and other utilities use this data to generate the actual images in jpeg, gif, pdf, or other formats. If you click on the map of Minneapolis above, you can see the .fig file used to create it.

While GUI drawing program is Xfig, the command-line utility to convert fig files to graphics is called fig2dev, which is included in the transfig package. The same .fig file can be used to create images of any size or compression factor, in most any format.

The Gimp

The main window for the gimp, version 2.4.2 This site's homepage logo and other graphics were created with the gimp (short for the GNU Image Manipulation Program). It is comparable to Photoshop in it's tools and features (it has layers, masks, bezier curves, and a variety of filters). Many Photoshop techniques can be executed in the Gimp unchanged. an image window for the gimp, version 2.4.2

sample graphics

oak leaf, snowflake, water pattern graphic drawn with Xfig
Seasonal design done with XFig
harness product illustration graphic drawn with the gimp
Product illustration done with the gimp, using bezier curves.

This page last modified on 2007-12-06

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