Chasys Draw IES
||This article possibly contains original research. (March 2012)|
Chasys Draw IES version 4.27.02
|Original author(s)||John Paul Chacha|
|Developer(s)||John Paul Chacha's Lab |
|Stable release||4.29.01 / 3 March 2015|
|Written in||C, C++ and assembly language|
|Operating system||Windows 2000 and above|
|Type||Raster graphics editor|
Chasys Draw IES (formerly known as Chasys Draw Artist) is a suite of applications including a layer-based raster graphics editor with animation, vista-style icon support and super-resolution via image stacking (Chasys Draw IES Artist), a multi-threaded image file converter (Chasys Draw IES Converter) and a fast image viewer (Chasys Draw IES Viewer). The whole suite is Vista UAC aware and is designed to take advantage of multi-core processors.
Chasys Draw is a project that was started in November 2001 by John Paul Chacha, mostly as a hobby than anything else. The original Chasys Draw was a rather simple bitmap editor done in visual basic, a lot like MS Paint save for its ability to do gradients. This application underwent many changes, eventually leading up to Chasys Draw 5. This was the first version to have its own native format, referred to simply as CD5.
Major updates to the graphics code in May 2002 resulted in Chasys Draw DTFx (Direct Tool eFfects). The new graphics code being referred to here was actually a miniature bitmap abstraction engine that allowed for fast per-pixel operations and direct image buffer access (much as the DIB engine does for GDI). The engine was named JpDRAW. This version was also done in VB, but was much faster than all the previous versions. The new graphics code allowed for more tools to be implemented than was ever possible before. Later on in 2002, the developer decided to completely abandon VB as a programming platform and moved all the code to C/C++. The move to C/C++ allowed the development of a full-fledged graphics engine which was named JpDRAW2. Chasys was renamed to Chasys Draw Artist, and the CD5 image format was also updated to reflect the new features. By coincidence, the module that implemented the file format was the fifth module to be added, so the format was called Chasys Draw module 5, retaining the .cd5 file extension.
- First public release
In April 2004, Chasys Draw Artist was released to the public via the internet for the first time (version 1.27). The release was done via betanews). In 2005, Chasys Draw underwent major user interface changes as well as internal changes. By December of that year, the project had reached version 1.63. This was the first version to introduce advanced features such as anti-aliasing. It was also the first version with full support for alpha channels. The CD5 image format was also upgraded to version 2, adding advanced compression, full alpha channels, encryption and metadata. Version 1.63 was the first version to win an IEEE (Kenya chapter) award in ICT.
The "chazy-glass" interface, from which the all later versions' user interfaces borrowed, was introduced in version 1.80. Chasys Draw Artist adopted photo editing features in version 2.01. Comprehensive tutorials were added and many features were re-designed to make them easier to use. Multi-threading was introduced to accelerate some tasks, such as the improved auto-save engine. Utilities such as a converter and browser were added. Version 2.43 of Chasys Draw Artist was quietly released to the public in late 2007 without any announcements. It featured many fixes to the formal version 2.42, as well as many new features. The quiet release was due to a decision to re-build Chasys Draw Artist from scratch, while still continuing support for the old architecture. An experimental version 2.45 was released only to beta-testers for the purpose of testing new technologies that would be included in the new architecture and was officially withdrawn in May 2008.
During the time when the versions 2.43~2.45 were being released, work was underway to create a new layer-based Chasys Draw, which was released as Chasys Draw IES (Image Editing Suite), with the initial version number 2.50. A new multi-layer tag-based image format was created to support layering and blending modes; this was named CD5 v3. The next version introduced animation and multi-resolution support as editing modes, and the next one brought in an unlimited undo engine, new plug-ins and several internal fixes. Further development led to the introduction of super-resolution and image stacking, support for video and video capture, Anti-aliasing, metadata save and restore, a "Pen and Path" tool, physical measurement specification, and a video sequence composer engine. The user interface was enhanced with adaptive scrolling and the auto-save engine was optimized. Some memory management was added for machines with low RAM.
By version 2.60, Chasys Draw IES was capable of loading Photoshop's PSD files, as well as load and save JPEG 2000. This version also had shell integration with thumbnails and application-level support for multi-monitor display setups. Metadata was extended to support save, restore and scaling for text formatting and path data. There was also a new palette with exchangeable swatches, loadable from all kinds of palette files. A slicing tool for web and user interface design was also included. A C++ code module output for inline image generation was added, as was a constrained recolor brush.
The concept of a "fully anti-aliased work-flow" was introduced in version 2.62, in which all drawing and selection tools were anti-aliased by default. Support for Photoshop plug-ins using Adobe's 8bf format was added in version 2.66, allowing users to utilize thousands of free plug-ins available online. Equivalents for the Pantone palettes (PMS 100 to 814-2x) were added, and the "Just-in-Time" memory compressor significantly reduced the editor's memory requirements.
- First freeware release
Chasys Draw IES went freeware on 6 June 2009. With the coming of the freeware IES, two blending modes (Hue and Chroma) were added. Textures were improved to allow multiple layer-based textures. The TextArt G3 engine was enhanced with LINK metadata, and alpha shift was improved. IES 2.72 added the Luma Wand tool, fixed PNG and TIFF transparency issues, and fixed Smart-Paste transparency. IES 2.74 introduced alpha protection, and 2.75 followed with a new adjustments engine that faced out many effects implemented by the effects engine. The adjustments engine was designed to appeal to experienced image editors. IES 2.76 introduced a new transform engine and the Resizer for IES plug-in supporting multi-core and 18 scaling methods, including customizable windowed Sinc interpolation. IES 2.77 added Greyscale with Tint adjustment, separated the Lock and Click-Thru layer properties, extended the Cloning Brush with three options (this, below and composite) and also extended the Color Picker with multiple point sampling.
IES 3.01 brought a new look and many breakthrough tools to the suite. It was geared toward touch and was fully compatible with Windows 7. The toolbox was reorganized, with some tools being grouped and new ones added. Some message boxes were replaced with a new popup system, and the working of the workspace was changed to use a back-blitter, which enabled the addition of new blending modes, Screen and Mask. The printing interface was modified and given accurate proofing. Alpha Function Adjustment was added and a new Anti-Quantization Engine included for all adjustments to remove the need for 16 bits per channel editing. An internal clipboard was created to cater for copying images that are too large for the Windows clipboard, and translucency full-page gradients added. Some new tutorials were added and keyboard shortcuts made configurable.
IES 3.05 brought the power of custom full-page gradients to the suite, supporting .ggr, .grd and .gra gradients. New gradient styles were included, as was support for Adobe color tables (.act), palette previewing, point color editing and a highly improved TextArt engine.
- Digital lightroom
IES 3.11 was introduced in December 14, 2009. It was done on a new development base and added a new application, raw-Input. This was a RAW image format processor based on dcraw. This application allowed the use of Chasys Draw IES in processing digital negatives, which are popular with professional photographers.
Chasys Draw IES 3.24 was released with a re-designed user interface, powered by a higher performance graphics core and better memory management. A history palette was introduced, as was a new screen capture function with video capability. The layer palette received drag-drop capability and unsharp masking got yet another upgrade. Soft proofing with ICC profiles was introduced in version 3.27. Full support for Win-7 was added in version, as was support for Exif. Support for graphics tablets (including Wacom) followed in version 3.33, and support for LightScribe Direct Disc Labeling was added in version 3.40.
- Conversion to Unicode
Chasys Draw IES 3.56 was the product of porting Chasys Draw IES from ANSI to UNICODE. It featured the first version of the Live Language Translation Engine, with multiple language support. A new, Unicode-aware "TextArt G4" engine was also introduced. IES 3.63 featured highly improved Photoshop 8BF support, a Silent Install option, Drag-drop to the Layers window, a censoring brush (under fx Brush), Improved RAW support, FastExternals 2.22 with a new callback suite (pi_StateStore), an external histogram window and a new Touch Gadget. It also included several bug fixes. Fault-tolerant file saving and taskbar progress reporting for Windows 7 were introduced in version 3.64.
- Recent versions
Recent versions of Chasys Draw IES have added high-end features such as Power Management, jitter-corrected Video Screen Capture, video cropping, digitizer pen rotation (e.g. Wacom Intuos with 6D Art Pen), and Shell-out.
Chasys Draw IES emphasizes speed and ease of use as major design goals, and its design is intended to reflect this.
Chasys Draw IES uses the concept of a free-style layer. A free-style layer is one that can be positioned anywhere, including totally removing it from the image and keeping it aside. Chasys Draw IES Artist provides free-style layering as a way to enable people to work with images the same way they would if the images were photos placed on their desk - you may stack what you need together, while placing pieces that you are not currently using outside the stack but within reach.
The rendering (drawing) of layers in Chasys Draw IES Artist is dictated by a parameter called the image mode.
The default image mode, composite, renders the layers as a stack for the purpose of compositing. Two sub-modes are provided, a normal sub-mode that emphasizes free-style layering and a clipped sub-mode that clips the output like other image editing software.
In the multi-resolution image mode, similar copies of the image are made at different resolutions. The destination device then has a choice of images to choose from, depending on the intended display resolution. This mode is primarily used for creating icons and cursors.
The animation image mode is used for short videos, known as animations. In this mode, only one layer is displayed at a time, one after the other, after a duration of time dictated by the frame delay layer attribute. It is analogous to the way an artist can draw a slightly different figure on each page of a pad of paper so that when you flip between sheets rapidly, the drawing appears to move. This mode includes a sub-mode for onion-skin animation.
Layer attachments (metadata)
Chasys Draw IES can add descriptive information, such as the name and style of font used, path data, etc. to a layer. This information is called metadata, and is saved along with the layer. If the layer were to be opened for editing later, this information will be restored to facilitate easier editing.
Detailed feature list
- Super-fast internal graphics engine (JpDRAW2)
- Free-style layering with blending modes
- Composite, Animation and Multi-resolution image modes
- Full alpha channel throughout the workflow
- Re-editable tools and fully re-editable text
- Alpha protection (a.k.a. transparency protection)
- Multi-core aware software architecture
- Vista UAC aware
- Multiple display setup aware
- Shell integration with thumbnails
- Asynchronous auto-save engine with 1 minute latency
- Anti-aliasing and super-sampling support in tools and paths*
- Unlimited Undo/Redo - undo any action any time
- Just-in-time memory compression
- Best-in-class post-edit heuristics anti-aliasing engine
- Image Stacking for super-resolution, stitching and moving object removal
- Advanced printing and scanning engines
- Video capture from devices (e.g. TV/Video)
- Video sequence composer engine
- Video Screen Capture
- In-built utilities (Calculator, Notepad)
- Metadata save, restore and scale to imitate vector art
- Extensive plug-in support
- Support for Photoshop Filter Plug-ins (.8BF)
- Support for the native formats of Photoshop, GIMP and Paint.NET
- Support for older formats such as PPM/PGM/PBM, PCX, TGA, etc.
- Uses the latest CD5 specification with animation and multi-resolution
- Vista-style icon import and export
- Can output C++ code module for inline image generation
- Includes plug-ins for JPEG 2000, AVI video, animated cursors, JPEG, PNG, animated GIF, etc.
- Physical measurement specification
- Streamlined SDKs with no restrictions
- Pantone equivalent palettes for PMS 100 to 814-2x
- Full UNICODE support in all components
- Multiple language support with user-editable language files
- Chasys Draw IES Artist - Tools
- Hand - for moving layers around
- Pencil - for pixel art, draws thin single-pixel lines
- Color Picker - picks (selects) colors from the image
- Lens - used to view small areas on your work up close
- Brush - allows you to draw thick anti-aliased free-form lines in any color of your choice
- Effects Brush - for special effects, such as smoke, red-eye reduction, and re-color
- Cloning Brush - (healing brush), copies pixels from one area of an image to another
- Pattern Brush - used to fill an area with a pattern, tiling it if and when necessary
- Eraser - allows you to make pixels in a layer transparent
- Opaquer - allows you to make pixels in a layer opaque
- Background Erase - allows you to isolated objects from backgrounds
- Edge Treatment - allows you correct edge artifacts in isolated objects
- Spray gun - sprays paint over a surface
- Roughen Tool - "roughens" the area around it
- Smoother - smoothens the area around it
- Sharpen - sharpens the area around it
- Texture Mapper - transforms an image into any four sided polygon
- Texture Plexus - transforms an image into a region of any shape and complexity
- Smudge - smudges the area under it in the direction of drawing
- Filling Paint - fills areas with even color with selected color
- Border Fill - fills areas within a border with selected color
- Transparency Fill - makes areas with even color transparent
- Magic Wand - erases pixels that have the same hue or brightness as the selected pixels
- Selection - cuts out image portions for editing
- Pen and Path - allows you to create a path, which you can then use to select, fill and stroke regions; supports several modes of operation, including elastic and magnetic lasso
- Crop and Rotate - crops part of an image and optionally rotates it
- Razor - slices (splits) the current layer into two pieces
- Resize Tool - provides an easy and convenient way to resize layers; performs a metadata-aware resize
- TextArt - allows you to add plain and decorative text to your images
- Mark-Up - allows you to set hot-spots and make measurements on the workspace
- Dynamics - allows you to dynamically adjust levels in the image
- Line - for drawing thick, straight, anti-aliased lines
- Curve - enables you to draw smooth curves that join points on an image
- Shape - allows you to draw various common shapes such as rectangles, circles, etc.
- Custom Shape - allows you to draw a custom shape (polygon) of your choice by setting vertices
- GT Shape - draws a variety of gradient- and alpha-shaded shapes
- Triangle List - draws a series of triangles in a polygon fan or strip manner
- Blocks Tool - draws various 3D block shapes
- Full-page Gradients - draws gradients covering the entire layer; such gradients are usually used as backgrounds
- Decorative GTs - draws various gradient- and alpha-shade objects and effects
- MyTool - allows you to use tools exposed through MyTool plug-ins
- Chasys Draw IES Artist - Transforms
- Smart Resize (Seam carving)
- Heuristic Scaling
- Subpixel Rendering
- Chasys Draw IES Artist - Adjustments
- Brightness and Contrast
- Hue, Saturation and Lightness
- Greyscale with Tint
- Levels and Gamma
- Curves / Transfer Function
- Alpha Function
- Histogram Equalization
- Chasys Draw IES Artist - Effects
- Synthetic Enhance
- Dynamic Contrast
- Local Contrast Enhancement
- Make Tile
- Post-edit heuristic Anti-aliasing (2 modes)
- Dither to 256 Colors (2 modes)
- Replace Color
- Duo Tone
- Channel Manipulation
- Emboss (2 modes)
- Edge Detect
- Diffuse Glow
- Drop Shadow
- Create Halo
- Liquify (Image warping)
- Custom Effect via Convolution Matrix
- Custom Effect via Color Matrix Filter
- Custom Effect via Program or Script (computing)
- External Effects via Plug-ins (Photoshop Effects is bundled)
- Shell-out to External Application
- Chasys Draw IES Artist - Processes
- Icon Generator (supporting 32 bpp Vista style icons and cursors)
- Decompose colors (Color separation)
- Align Images for Stacking
- Chasys Draw IES Artist - Blending modes
- Custom Blending (uses metadata to define operation details)
- Chasys Draw IES Artist - Miscellaneous
- Fully UNICODE with multi-language support
- 18 scaling methods, including Bicubic (Cardinal, BSpline, BCSpline) and Windowed Sinc (Bartlett, Blackman, BlackmanHarris, Bohman, Cosine, Gauss, Hamming, Hann, Kaiser, Lanczos, Parzen, Rectangular, Welch)
- Video Screen Capture
- CD Labeling and other project templates
- Brush Engine version 2.1
- AQuE (Anti-Quantization Engine)
- Pen and Tablet support (all WinTAB devices including Wacom)
- Color filter matrices
- Animated cursor creation
- Mark-up broadcast and Exif support
- Soft proofing with ICC profiles
- Converter can duplicate subfolder hierarchies
- Video cropping, optimization and rate conversion
- Image scanning via both TWAIN and WIA
- Chasys Draw IES Converter
- Support for dual/multi-core processor acceleration (up to 32 cores for 32x speed)
- Animation conversion and Metadata transfer
- Super-fast internal graphics engine (JpDRAW2)
- Vista UAC aware
- Chasys Draw IES Viewer
- Touch-friendly UI with zoom and rotate
- High-speed loader function
- Animation and animation rotation support
- In-built support for plug-ins with lossless rotation (e.g. JPEG)
- Super-fast internal graphics engine (JpDRAW2)
- Vista UAC aware
- Chasys Draw IES raw-Photo
- Based on dcraw
- Floating point and 48-bit workspace engine, combined with JpDRAW2
- Artist-like interface
- Curves and Gains adjustment
- Vista UAC aware
- New Effect - Add Noise
- New stacking option - Combine moving objects
- Support for PaintShop Pro image files
- Support for PaintShop Pro brush files
- Thumbnails and InfoTips on 64-bit Windows
- Improved Smart-Resize algorithm
- Improved uninstaller (you won't need it, though)
- Several minor code optimizations
- Several minor UI improvements
- (bug fix) Erroneous inconsistency warnings
- (bug fix) Crash while saving GIF files
- (bug fix) Delayed response to brush attribute changes
Reviews of Chasys Draw IES have been largely positive, with the editors at CNET download.com giving it a 5/5 star rating and saying "Chasys Draw IES Artist is a free, full-featured image editing and drawing program that does what big-box programs like Adobe Photoshop can do, with a few unique touches that set it apart and actually make it easier to use than the competition."  Some users have pointed out that it is a very powerful piece of software and one of those you need to try for yourself to really appreciate.
- "Chasys Draw IES Homepage". John Paul Chacha. 2012-07-02.
- "Chasys Draw IES Documentation". John Paul Chacha. 2012-07-02.
- "Chasys Draw Image format". File-Extensions.org. 2007-09-11.
- "Chasys Draw Artist at Betanews Fileforum". Betanews. 2007-09-09.
- "Chasys Draw Artist wins IEEE Expo". Centurion Systems. 2007-09-09.
- "File formats supported by Chasys Draw IES". gimphelp.org. 2007.
- "CNET Download.com review of Chasys Draw IES". CNET Download.com. 2011.
- "User review - "you need to try for yourself to really appreciate it"". NcryptoWorkz. 2009.