Rita 1.1.2

Rita 1.1.2

Despite its peculiarities, Rita can turn out a decent still life.


Compared to Scribbles, Rita’s interface is crowded with tools that provide both unusual strokes and fine control over their attributes. Like many drawing programs, its Tool Panel includes freehand and straight lines, both with and without arrows, and a few closed shapes. From there it diverges into odd forests, with four types of repeating pattern: table, grid, cartoon-like panels, and (strangest of all) a series of hexagons. A Freehand Oval tool takes whatever squiggle you lay down and somehow converts it into a regular oval of approximately the same dimensions, while two bizarre pens (Scatter and Hatch) let you fill the page with ink splotches and scratches. Each tool has several adjustable properties, such as stroke size and opacity, and you can control the size and spacing of cells in the grid-like tools.


Despite its extensive collection of unusual tools, Rita lacks some interface niceties. For example, you don’t see the size of a brush or eraser while drawing: You have to touch the “paper” with it, and then undo or erase the stroke if it’s too big or small. Most significant of all is that all painting is done on one layer, making anything beyond simple sketching difficult or impossible.


Overall, Rita looks like it was designed by a programmer with an interest in art, rather than a team that includes working artists. To Rita’s benefit, that approach includes documentation on the author’s website on how to program your own pens for Rita using the Lua language. Perhaps that’s Rita’s greatest strength: Its openness could serve as a platform for programmer/artists with specialized needs.


The bottom line. The original Macintosh came bundled with MacDraw, MacWrite, and MacPaint. Current Macs still come with a capable text processor (TextEdit), but sadly you still have to look elsewhere for drawing and painting programs. The good news is that programs such as Rita, make fulfillment of that search less expensive than a good meal.


COMPANY: Niklas Frykholm

CONTACT: www.frykholm.se/rita.html

PRICE: $20

REQUIREMENTS: Mac OS 10.3.9 or later

Large collection of tools. Can program your own lens. Universal binary.

Some interface peculiarities. Single layer only.





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