Posts Tagged ‘free’
So lately I’ve been playing around fun apps – one of them is IOGraph. It’s a Java app which records your mouse movements and turns them into “art”. It gives you an interesting perspective on your typical computer routine.
Once you stop recording, you can save the image on your computer. You can do whatever you want with it – make it your desktop wallpaper, post it on your blog/Twitter/Facebook, etc.
I also used GIMP, an open source and totally free graphics program and a great alternative to Adobe Photoshop. Years ago I wouldn’t have used it – I found it wasn’t as user-friendly as PS, Paint Shop Pro or even Macromedia Fireworks (do they still make that nowadays?). Thankfully it’s improved, saving poor uni students like me. You can even add really cool plugins to enhance your work in GIMP – I’ll try and review one in a future blog post.
A few days ago I used IOGraph to record the mousepaths used in my mockup design work. I thought the end result was worth experimenting in GIMP.
What I did was use the “Sunset” gradient as a separate layer on top of the original picture, then played around with the Blending Modes (I think I settled on “Grain Merge”). I found that the background was a bit too “chaotic” as a desktop wallpaper (it clashed with icons) so then I added a white layer on top and reduced its opacity (to be honest, it might still be too “chaotic”, but try it). This is the result below (click on it for a full picture):
Et voila – a free, decent, “arty” wallpaper using free programs.