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Re: Artwork conversations



I'll jump in this discussion as a relative outsider, and start by
saying that I am not an artist by any stretch of imagination. I am
not going to comment on the quality of any artwork either. 

I'm not going to reply to the many long emails in this conversation
in detail, but I'd like to respond to this quote, which I think is
indicative of some of the misunderstandings that have happened:

"[all we can do is] sit back and each 6 months when a new version is
released act as fanboys and worship the great powers that brought us the
graphics"

No, not at all. Instead find a channel to get your art in people's
hands. 

Focusing narrowly on the default, branded theme that ships with the next
Fedora release is probably not the best way to achieve that. Also,
striving for the overarching, unified experience "from cradle to grave"
or rather from anaconda to background makes it much harder than it has
to be. Many of the pieces of a "full branding kit" are seen only once
(if at all) by our users (anaconda, firstboot, etc). On the flip side,
the parts that people see all the time on their desktops (gtk theme,
window manager theme, background, icons) are easy to package up and get
into Fedora as a standalone package. 

Another point is that almost all the proposals that have been discussed
on this list are heavily branded. The heavy branding in FC5 (and to a
lesser extent, FC6) was necessary to introduce the new Fedora logo.
But I think that longer-term, it would be much better to produce themes
that are less branded and can stand on their own because of their
quality as a theme, not because they have the necessary branding to
become the default Fedora theme. And we could really use more
high-quality non-branded themes, e.g. to make it easier for those who
create derived distributions and need to strip out the Fedora branding.

It is also worth pointing out that you do not even have to package
your theme as an rpm; the theme capplet allows drag-and-drop
installation of themes from tarballs that can e.g. be published
at art.gnome.org. Currently this does not include cursor theme, 
background and login screen, but that will hopefully change at some
point.

Regarding Echo - nobody disagrees that it is incomplete, maybe more so
than some other icon themes that we ship (none of them is "complete"
though, that notion is not even well-defined). But the "open source" 
way is to release early and often, and let things develop out in the
open. Which is exactly what we are doing with Echo.

Finally, some emails in this conversation have expressed the idea 
that doing open source implies doing everything out in the open and 
by direct democracy. That is very far from the truth. I recommend 
writing a kernel patch and trying to get it in the kernel to get rid
of this notion...


Matthias


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