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Amazing Paint

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Year released:
[www].se [ftp].se [mirror].us [mirror].de
Amazing_Paint.sit (324.15 KB)
MD5: 6888b88296c18de14cc6b45d0049b0b1
This app works with: Basilisk II, Mini vMac

There's nothing flashy or mind-expanding about Amazing Paint—no integrated draw tools, animation, image processing, talking lassos, or anything like that. This is pure black-and-white paint, pretty much the way you remember it from MacPaint. In fact, if you've used any other Macintosh paint program, you know how to use almost everything in Amazing Paint, it's so easy to learn. But the program is well named: It has all of the little enhancements that you wish MacPaint had, as well as some amazing tools that, frankly, I fell in love with.

There's all the usual stuff, of course: a variety of selection and shape tools, the pencil, eraser, fill bucket, and so on—all available from a tear-off toolbox. However, most of the tools have new options that can be called from a panel on the right of the toolbox—which is much easier than going to the menu bar for everything.

For example, pop-up windows allow the spray can to be adjusted for spray size, spray pattern, and spray speed, making it more like a real airbrush. The spray-pattern options window offers several ways to super-impose the selected pattern on your drawing (under the existing drawing, over the drawing, blended with it, and so on), with each method shown in a test window as you select it. Instant feedback like this is a timesaving feature that's typical of this program.

Other thoughtful touches include smooth autoscrolling; multiple levels of undo and redo; rotation and scaling of selections in angles and percentages; a magic wand that selects only inside a bounded region; several ways to magnify the screen, including one that follows the movement of the cursor; and a billboard-printing feature that blows up your graphic to fill multiple pages, with crop and registration marks for taping the sheets together after printing. And the program is satisfyingly fast. Effects rarely lagged behind the cursor even on my Mac Plus; on a IIcx, everything snapped to instantly.

This program has two of the nicest gadgets I've seen in any paint-box. One customizes the shape of arrowheads for use with dimensioning lines and technical-drawing callouts. By dragging just three handles, you can make any arrowhead under the sun in about two seconds, something that can't be accomplished even on many high-end CAD programs.

The other gadget is the mouse-tracking window. It tells you, in real-time, the exact (x,y) screen coordinates of the cursor, in pixels, inches, or centimeters, as well everything you'd ever want to know about how you're moving a selection—size of selection, distance moved from original position, and angle moved. I'm not sure how useful mouse tracking is (if you want exact placement of selections, there's a fully adjustable grid that's a snap to use) but I sure enjoyed playing with it.

The feeling I got when I used Amazing Paint was, "Finally, someone took MacPaint and did it over right, at the right price." It makes you want to try 1-bit paint again, for the first time.

  — Steven Anzovin, Compute! (December 1990)


This is version 1.0.1. If you have any of the later revisions up to version 1.0.4, please upload them.


Architecture: 68k

"Macintosh Plus, SE series, II series, or Portable." Does not work under Mac OS 9.2. You will probably have the best luck with System 6 or 7.