Art team feature

Nicu Buculei nicu_fedora at
Mon Mar 30 09:25:22 UTC 2009

For those willing to reply, add Bill in CC, he is not subscribed to the 

Bill DeJohn wrote:
> Hello,


>   My name is Bill DeJohn ( Dadster ).  I am co-founder of Linux Graphics 
> Users forum.  We have a monthly article where we feature a distros art 
> team.
>   Fedora is one of the leading Linux distros and I would like consent to 
> feature Fedora's art team in the upcoming month.  I have a questionnaire 
> that enables an interview format which I have included with this email.  
> Everyone on your team should be involved in answering the questions. All 
> I ask is it be organized so I can give credit by name to all members who 
> participate.  

Let me first introduce Máirín Duffy, she is the leader of our team and 
the most active person here, I believe you want to feature her:

>   I will include screenshots. If you have a preference please attach 
> with the completed questionnaire.  

We are still a bit too early in the process of Fedora 11 (right now a 
few days ahead of the Beta release), so we don't have screenshots 
accurately showing the next release, you can follow the development 

We can provide, if needed, screenshots from the current release (Fedora 
10) and images from the other projects we are working on (posters, 
t-shirts, banners, icons, logos and much more)

>   I would appreciate if someone could respond by email to let me know if 
> you need more info or we can go ahead with the feature.
>   Thank You,  Bill
> Questionnaire.....

I'll go first... hope others will jump in and complete me.

> Tell us about Fedora.

The Art Team inside Fedora has formed about 3 years ago (before this the 
artwork was worked inside the Desktop Team at Red Hat), trying to do for 
the artwork the same thing Fedora is doing in general: creating 
innovative and quality products with a Free license and using an open 

I like to believe we don't do a bad job at meeting this goal.

> Give us some history on each art team member. Anyone have formal 
> training? Who or what influenced you to get involved?

There are a lot of the members in the team, I find uncomfortable trying 
to list them, I surely will miss some.
We have a list at 
but it is not up to date, some are not listed (guys and girls, please 
add yourself) and some of those listed are not active.

Some of have formal training, some are students competing their formal 
training right now and some are amateurs. I am an amateur.
We are a heterogeneous team, from Art graduates to quantum physicists :p

> What other Linux distros have you done work for? Any independent Linux 
> groups you've contributed artwork to?

You will find here people working with various upstream projects (take 
GNOME as a prominent example).

Personally I have a lot of fun contributing to the Open Clip Art Library 
(, large library of clip art images released as 
Public Domain.

> Can you take us through the process from development to finalization of 
> artwork for a new release of Fedora? Does the general community 
> contribute also?

The general community is contributing indirectly: we try to do 
everything in the open, publishing the progress of our work and asking 
for the feedback from the larger community and then using the feedback 
to improve the graphics.

As an example, for Fedora 11 Máirín Duffy conducted an informal survey 
on her blog and learned that a lot of users prefer a photorealistic 
wallpaper, so we are trying such an approach for the next release. Since 
the graphics are included in the Beta release, we are eagerly awaiting 
for the post-Beta feedback in a few days.

As for the development process, we used to have a "3 rounds" system to 
collect and evolve different graphic concept and in the end select one 
by consensus. But for Fedora 10 the consensus has not worked, so we 
ended with 4 different concepts in the final state so had to keep an 
internal vote.

Based on this unpleasant experience, we try something different: we 
selected early a concept and it was based on the release name (Fedora 11 
has the code name "Leonidas") and try to work is as a team, instead of 
having a competition between us.

We'll see hot this work and will adjust for Fedora 12.

> What are your favorite Linux graphics software programs?

We are huge Inkscape fans and use also GIMP a lot. We have a couple of 
Blender gurus and use Scribus from time to time, mostly for printing.

A reason of pride for us is that the graphics for Fedora are made 
entirely using Fedora, we are confident in Fedora as being a good tool 
to fulfil all our needs.

> Any thoughts on ease of use or what you'd like to see changed in Linux 
> graphics software?

That's an easy one: better professional print support in Inkscape (CMYK, 
spot colors) and GEGL powered adjustment layers and more that 8 bits per 
channel in GIMP. Or this is what I would like to have... yesterday :p

> As operating systems evolve so does their artwork. What direction or 
> development would you like to see with your work pertaining to the 
> future of Fedora?

I think we are on the right track here but I personally think there is 
some more room left for collaboration with other teams inside the project.

There is a lot of work going around the Desktop development in Fedora, 
so stay tuned for big things in the future. I hope we (the Art team) 
will be able to keep the pace, some new additions like the improved boot 
graphics (Plymouth) could be documented better, so we try to to as much 
as we can.

> There are a lot of new distros popping up, seemingly every day.  Any 
> advice you can give them on the graphics art side of it?

My advice would be: do the development in the open and keep your artwork 
Free. Use as much as you can Free tools and always Free formats, 
otherwise you will not be able to work as a team.

It is also useful to try to keep the barrier to entry as low as possible 
for the new contributors.

> If someone wanted to get involved with Fedora artwork, where would they go?

If you want to contribute, please subscribe to our mailing list and 
introduce yourself:

I am sure we can find a lot of things with you can help with :p

> Anything else you'd like to add?

nicu :: ::
my Fedora stuff:

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