[advocacy] Xiphophorus helleri
Sat Dec 28 13:23:04 PST 2002
> Ok, I didn't expect such an elaborate answer.
Heh. The only reason Xiph ever used the Fish is that the Fish had
been a personal logo for a long time (I've put it on software I've
personally written since 1986), and in many ways still is. Both the
name 'Xiph' and the twirlfish logo were originally temporary
placeholders that stuck.
> I have to admit I don't know
> much about how fish look. And I also didn't expect that you wanted to keep
> specific anatomic details while clearly others are disregarded, for example
> the eye "sticking out" of the head, the mouth/lips being strongly emphasized
> and the colors reduced to two.
> You haven't explicitly stated it, but I guess that while creating a
> stylization you wanted to keep a streamlined look.
> My main goals while creating the new fish were to adhere to the current design
> as close as possible while reducing the "crude" look, well, and making it
> look cuter.
...and overall you succeeded (my first impression of the
result is that SVG's spline control is somewhat more sophisticated
than what xfig offers).
> As becomes clear from your comments, that what I have called "crude" is
> actually a design choice made by you.
It was, but it was also a compromise, one I settled on after failing
to mix splines in an appealing way. Some of that problem was the tool
I was using (xfig). There wasn't much free software for vector
graphics in 1990 (xfig and tgif were about it, and both had similar
spline usage issues).
> I didn't like that part either but while rounding the upper lip was close to
> the original I was afraid to also round the lower lip since it would have
> looked too different.
The lips are probably the hardest part to get right.
> > Yeah, the fish is pretty heavily stylized, by the stylization is
> > intended to be consistent. What I don't want to happen going to a
> > more rounded look is that the fish move toward looking like a balloon
> > animal.
> Do you think this is already the case?
No, but the complete loss of angles was going that direction. You
didn't eliminate all straight lines, which was a good choice. The
tail is surprisingly good; it was a total disaster when I tried to
make it with splines.
> While I'm willing to change the fish to meet some of your intentions put forth
> in this mail, I like the pectoral fin as it is now although I have to admit
> that the previous basic shape is lost. Unless the remainder of the fish is
> changed completely I can also not see how straight lines could be put back
> into the mouth's shape.
I'll submit a quick pictorial suggestion. I doubt I'll have time
tonight, but I can't resist the Gimp for long.
> Again, I tried to stay as close to the JPEG as possible and the dots actually
> _are_ rectangles in that image. I just didn't dare to round them any more
> since it would be too different from the original.
I meant, 'I'll circle where I would like corners introduced to break
up spline curves', or perhaps just do a rough job in the Gimp to
illustrate what I mean.
The spots on the body were just fine (they were originally meant to
suggest body scales).
> On a sidenote, I can not quite understand that part of the fish where the
> caudal fin meets the body. It looks anatomically incorrect since the fin
> seems to be behind the body. If it's not clear what I mean I'll send a
> picture describing this.
I know exactly what you mean. This is a stylized representation of
the way many Cichlid dorsal fins taper as they approach the tail. 'It
just looked right'.
> *phew* Didn't expect that to be so much work...
It's a bit like being a barber... you're working on a piece of
someone's identity. And I'm a really picky bastard :-)
--- >8 ----
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