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Newsletter #59

July Horse Races


...beyond digital painting

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The above image was rendrered in Puppy Ray, currently under development for Dogwaffle 9

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Hello again. 

Here's another issue of our newsletter, the sporadic Dogwaffler of the moment.

As always, you can also find the html version here:

July Horse Races

(and let's not forget Comicon)

The San Diego County fair is over. It used to be known as the Del Mar Fair. It still has a nice sounding tone to me that way. I don't know why. Memories, I suppose.

Another event is still better known as the Del Mar event, the Horse races.  So we think it's time to get your equine skills and start drawing and painting horses. Races horses, galloping horses, or horses looking at you and eating, well, what do they eat?

Here are some examples of horses drawn or rendered with Dogwaffle, to get you inspired:

Here's a great drawing/sketch by Janis Labelle. This goes back sooooo long, wow, over 10 years ago, March 2003 - it was one of the first reviews/Dogwafflers of the Moment:

The review (on PD 1.5) was published by the Creative Cow:

This one goes back to animations created by Dan Ritchie himself, (the author of Project Dogwaffle, in case you didn't know):
I am a horse.
This horse talks. You can see animations of it and fellow cowboys done in Frame Painter, introduced in PD Pro 5.1. (which is now available for free)

and here's one more, using the Gertrudis plugin:

If we get a chance to visit the horse races at DelMar this summer, we'll post some more images here. Hopefully it will inspire you to draw and paint or do some digital art from photos.

That said, it's not all about horse races in San Diego and Del Mar. This week, it's a specially loaded week. It's Comicon!   So perhaps you'll feel compelled to draw a horse - in Anime or Manga style?

Even more important:  still about 2 months till Dogwaffle 9 is out.

Project Dogwaffle Howler 9 - an Update

We're still tentatively 2 months away from the release of Howler 9, and there's still a lot to do, but now is a good time to share with yo some more insights and let you, our loyal users, know what's coming up in the next version: Howler 9.

We've talked about the Puppyray filter a few times already, and it's basically a new height map raytracer for Howler. It features soft shadows and global illumination lighting for more realistic scenery rendering than was previously possible with the realtime 3D Designer by itself.

We are really hoping to see Linux support in the 9 life-cycle, using Wine as the API. We've come a lot of miles and stability is already pretty good. There's always something more to do. We've been systematically internalizing plugins, and components that used it (i.e. removing dependency on the .Net 4 framework), because Wine doesn't support .Net framework 4 yet. We've finally removed the windows snapping feature, since that was a holdover from version 4, and was causing at least one crash under Wine. We also had to make a special branch of the Browser and image sequence loading dialog boxes. We are happy to report that pressure support seems to be workable right now. More testing will be required before we can make an official statement on Linux support, but things are looking hopeful.

We are also introducing Side-by-side comparison mode, for comparing the effects of a filter before and after. When you use this mode, half of the screen shows the current image (before the filter), while the other half (right ide) shows it with the filter applied. When you click OK to finalize the filter effect, the entire image gets it, of course.

There are also numerous changes to various filters. Since we're doing all that integrating, it's only natural to go in and make some improvements as well. The wood-grain filter now works in real time. The countdown filter now uses more standard colorbars and shows a preview in real time. In general, a number of filters open more quickly and operate faster.

One nice convenience we've added is the ability to toggle the 'allow custom brush transforms' feature directly on the context strip. This is big improvement on the workflow. Before, you had to go to the settings panel and navigate to another tab (the Custom tab) in order to find the check box that lets you enable custom brush transform (which includes rotating and scaling the image of the brush on-the-fly (or images, if it were an animbrush)). We wonder if systems nowadays are generally fast enough that we could in fact make this the default behavior. What do you think, especially when loading large images into the custom brush? Should it be enabled by default and easy to turn off, or disabled by default and easy to turn on?

We are also making some changes for better international support. The comma (,) separator instead of the period (.) should now be supported. This caused some features not to work correctly on some machines. So, if you're on a system running, for example, the French or German version of Windows, you may want to visit the Settings panel's GUI tab and check the option that relates to the comma (",") being used as separator in decimal numerical values.  Hm,.... come to think of it, perhaps we could detect the version (language) of Windows at runtime and select the default for you? Still good to be able to override it though. Just in case.

There's still some we can't talk about yet, or haven't decided on at this point, so time will tell what else will be including, so stay tuned. There's surely more to come in version 9. We anticipate releasing it in September. So now is a good time to get ready, by upgrading to the current v8.2, and be prepared for super discount upgrade options once v9 is here.

Howler 8 & Artist 8 on Sale - 40% off

Check the specials for the rest of July: 40% off the PD Pro 8 Howler edition and Artist edition. Not as good as a few days ago when it was 50% off, but still a great way to prepare for the upcoming upgrade discounts for v9.

See Current Promotions:


And now for something different...

We have seen two projects that are interesting enough that we want to share some info about it with you. Actually, 3. So here's a shameless plug for three other projects. Hopefully you'll find some of this of value, use, or simply amusing.

3D Stickers.
3D Stickers by
                                  Michel Agullo

Here's a 3D Artist who has been accumulating 3D models that he renders in high resolution and prints to vinyl stickers. His name is Michel Agullo, you may remember him from early days with Amapi, abaout 15 years ago he designed an elephant for print on T-shirts:

Well, he's come a long way since. There are now hundreds of designs, and new ones being added daily. Here's a gallery you might find inspiring:

What tools does he use? For modeling, it started in Amapi at first, it is now Hexagon, available at

If you have children's rooms to decorate, or a kitchen, a hobby room,.... these vinyl stickers are great fun. You can order them from Michel's online store, at least in France and nearby. More options are in the making. 'nuf said for now.


Display your image in mid air:  Displairit is time for a different display

This is a russian company that's designed a system which displays images in mid air. It also detects your interactions with it, yes, you can interact with it. Like a holographic touchscreen. Pretty slick. Perhaps you saw it at Adobe Max or other events?

Still a bit pricey, but hey, so was the Tesla when it first came out. Gradually, they're going to be affordable to everyone, and eventually find themselves on your wristwatch, your smartphone, your everyday common utility.

Last but not least:  SystranLinks

Ok, so this one is not just related to digital painting, but it still has something in common: communicating with other people. Art is of course also a form of communication. Especially a form of communicating impressions, emotions and an experience. And graphic design surely serves the same purpose: to transfer information, knowledge, and intent. So this should not be too surprising: There are artists around the world. And yes, they speak a language. And no, not necessarily English.  I met some in Europe a few weeks ago. They have websites. Their websites are in French, German, Italian etc... but they realize that some of their customers prefer to speak and read Dutch, Swedish, Spanish, Portuguese, Japanese and Chinese, Russian and Zulu, to name a few. So what can you do if you have a product or service that you want to market to the world, or even just in one other language? What do you do for example if you own a small printing shop in Southern California or Texas, and your website is in English, but half your customers are latinos and some of them really don't read English well enough to become your customers?

You make your site available in other languages. That's what SYSTRANLinks does. Other solutions exist, such as Google, or Smarling, to name a few. Some solutions are fully automated but lack the ability to fine tune and make changes you want to make, such as replacing images for regional consideration. You wouldn't want a desert sand dune on a website translated to Eskimo. Unless it's a site suggesting you take a cruise to see the pyramids in Egypt. Other solutions are totally based on human translation, and the cost and time it takes is not suitable for everyone, especially starving artists. And then there's SYSTRANLinks, which combines machine translation (from both SYSTRAN but also supports Google or Microsoft API keys), enhanced by great tools for human post editing. You can in fact use it for purely manual localization. But if you want it to translate for you, the system can be in place in a mere 30 seconds. Don't believe me? Check a few videos. Note: These will take longer to watch than the time it takes to get your site onto the global scene by localizing, pre-translating and hosting the localized sites automatically.

Watch the teaser (1.5 minutes):

Watch the 3-minute Introduction:

Watch a 15-minute presentation at a recent TAUS technology webinar:

And a longer version of the introduction (12 minutes).

And yes, if you think you think you recognize my voice in some of these, it's not by accident. We created the videos and narrated some of them.

Let me wrap it up by saying that if you run a website with Dogwaffle artwork on it, and you decide to go with the free SYSTRANLinks system (or a premium service level), we'd love to hear from you and see it. It's a small world, and it's just gotten a little smaller. You can see a number of online translation and localization solutions to help you communicate with other artists. Translation is going mainstream, it's becoming a commodity. Have you seen voice-transcription being translated and played back in audio, in real time? Have a look at the latest smartphones, it's amazing how easy it is to point and click, or click and speak, to make yourself understood by others, no matter what language you or they speak.

In a perfect world, there would only be one language, and we'd all speak Klingon. In the real world, we'll still have to come to Comicon to enjoy that!

Happy waffling and howling!

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What's coming to PD Pro 9?

v8 Images?

Slideshow 8.2

8.2 Showcase

Dropbox Gallery

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#51 PD Pro 8.2 Howler
#52 PD Artist 8.2b
#53 PD Artist 8.2c
#54 Previewing 8.2d
#55 Videos and Demo
#56 - Puppy Ray
#57 - Memorial Day
#58 - June Gloom

#59 - July Horse Races

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