Category Archives: Critique

An answer from Rheinwerk-Verlag

Just got an email from the responsible lector at Rheinwerk-Verlag. As I wrote in another post, I sent them two emails with suggestions & some (hopefully) constructive criticism. The lector responded that the book “Gimp 2.10” by Jürgen Wolf was not aimed at professionals, but at beginners and advanced hobby users, and that they were grateful for my critique & would consider it in the next edition.

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Golden 3D text

Golden 3D text with bevel & an environment map

After emailing Rheinwerk-Verlag some suggestions on how to improve their book for Gimp 2.10, I made a golden 3D text with a so-called environment map. I used a free photo of clouds for this that I downloaded from Unsplash ( a good resource, btw). Stuff like that for intermediate and advanced users is unfortunately missing in the book. Quote from the Rheinwerk website: “With this comprehensive manual, there are no questions left.” I really doubt that. Imho, only a genius could fully exploit the possibilities of Gimp 2.10.

Flóra Borsi

I first learned about the work of Hungarian Photoshop artist, Flóra Borsi when her Flamingo image was on the cover of a German photo magazine. The next time I read about her work was on a German blog, where a few manipulated photos from her “Selfie” series were posted – as it is customary at least here in Germany – without any byline; only a very small link to another blog in English. Apparently neither of the owners of those blogs asked Flóra Borsi for permission to post the images in question.

So far – so good? Not necessarily, because Flóra Borsi used photographs of well-known historical figures such as Mahatma Ghandi, Marilyn Monroe, Albert Einstein, or Sigmund Freud without giving the photographers of the original photos any credit. An email I sent her remained unanswered. Obvioulsy she didn’t ask the photographers in question for permission. After emailing an inquiry to VG Bild-Kunst, I got the answer that this is clearly illegal. Now what?

Facebook & Twitter

I dislike both Facebook & Twitter. Why? It’s hard to say. I just feel uncomfortable using them. Consequently, I have deleted both accounts. Plus, Instagram, which belongs to Facebook, invites its users to infringe copyright. After an inquiry of mine I got an answer from VG Bild-Kunst here in Germany, saying that embedding Instagram posts is an infringement of copyright. So, I’m asking myself, why does Instagram explicitly (!) provide a link for that purpose? They must know about the legal consequences.

Interesting: In the Instagram Terms of Use, the word copyright doesn’t appear – not once.

Again: Corel support

During the last two weeks or so, I was in touch (read: I was mostly waiting for answers) with Corel’s support. To sum it up: I was thoroughly disappointed. The support seemingly only communicates via text macros, and I had the impression that they simply didn’t read what I was writing them. All in all I’m very disappointed and won’t contact Corel’s support again in the near future.

The social security office

Right now, I’m very disppointed with the social security office & their response to my query. Imho, their reaction is bureaucratic & short-sighted. To sum it up, they’re not interested in me getting away from welfare at all. A reminder: I sent them a letter asking them if they would support my effort to earn part of my income as a photographer. I would need a better camera, if they would pay for it?

The related paragraph of SGB XII encourages all parties to work for the goal to enable the person entitled to receive welfare to become independent of it. In German, this reads as follows:

“Die Leistung soll sie so weit wie möglich befähigen, unabhängig von ihr zu leben; darauf haben auch die Leistungsberechtigten nach ihren Kräften hinzuarbeiten. Zur Erreichung dieser Ziele haben die Leistungsberechtigten und die Träger der Sozialhilfe im Rahmen ihrer Rechte und Pflichten zusammenzuwirken.” – SGB XII, § 1

This is bureaucracy made in Germany.