[Design-team] The Theme

Máirín Duffy mairin at linuxgrrl.com
Thu Jun 18 21:28:10 UTC 2009

On Thu, 2009-06-18 at 22:56 +0200, Martin Sourada wrote:
> On Thu, 2009-06-18 at 09:55 -0400, Máirín Duffy wrote:
> > We still need a default. We could pick one of the ones we select to be
> > the default one, but have others along the same theme available as
> > options. Adding another dialog I think isn't a good idea.
> Think of Live CDs. We don't have the space to ship more wallpapers in
> our default install...

Don't we ship a small selection GNOME-provided wallpapers in the LiveCD
as well? Couldn't we swap those out?
> > > Honestly, I am not a big fan of this approach, is like us dropping the 
> > > ball and acknowledging we are not able to create ourselves something 
> > > good enough.
> > 
> Me neither.

Why do we have to create the wallpaper ourselves?
> > Well it doesn't mean that we couldn't, for example, take a sourced image
> > we decide should be the default and manipulate it or make some changes
> > to it. Also, we'd still have to create from scratch all the various
> > banners and splashes, etc. Or it could even be we select something we
> > think is awesome and openly-licensed and use it heavily as inspiration,
> > but we can still create an original work.
> > 
> Yeah, we could do that, but are we really that desperate to take our
> default artwork from outside our team?

I *am* that desperate. The past 3 releases have been miserable for me
personally, and I did literally have to drop everything going on in my
life and spend late nights on the wallpaper.

Fedora 9 was the worst. With Samuele's help in F10 and F11 it's been a
bit easier but not much. If there is someone passionate and motivated
enough to take the responsibility for the theme from me and push for
original created work then please do - I do not want to do it!

> > To be honest, I'm just really exhausted having everything be last-minute
> > and involve so much effort in a short-notice period of time. The problem
> > is, right now, as team lead the buck stops with me so if we're not ready
> > it's my responsibility to drop everything in my life and spend late
> > nights coming up with something. If we didn't have Samuele helping out
> > the past couple of releases we might have something horrible like the F9
> > background again - but at the same time we can't lean on Samuele all the
> > time either.
> > 
> Hm... honestly I think the F9 wallpaper turned out pretty well after
> all, but there was the issue of us working with two themes at once which
> didn't work very well -  we already had the waves theme and added the
> sulphur which didn't turned out well, so we reverted back to waves only
> last minute... The problem with F10 and F11 for me is that it was
> basically photo manipulation. Huge files with any sort of editing in
> gimp taking up significant amount of time...
> I say it once more, but since I am with the art (now design) team, I
> consider the Infinity theme the best one. We should go with something
> simple and abstract for F12 again. It would be much more likely to
> finish that in time -- and probably even more people could have directly
> contribute (not everyone wants to download 100MB xcf which takes 1min+
> to open and 30s+ to hide/show a layer...).

Abstract is fine with me.
> > It seems like it would be nice, at least for just one release, to take a
> > breather, try out an approach like this, and if we decide we don't like
> > it then there is no reason we shouldn't abandon it. 
> > 
> Yeah, we can try it, but I am already tired of having to adjust to
> different approaches in each release. I've had hard time to follow even
> the F11 process... We should really select two plans and stick to those
> for much longer time than one release. And have them properly documented
> on wiki. One would be the main one, the second one fallback, if
> something goes wrong. I think the fallback one could be your proposal of
> basing our work on already finished images taken from outside the team.

We had *one plan* we followed for *several releases*. There were
problems with it so we tried something new: We can't discover the right
approach if we don't try different ones, but it has not been a different
approach every single release. It was the same approach every release,
and a different one for F11. 

How could the F11 process have been clearer? It was documented on the
wiki: http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Artwork/F11   What are the problems
with this? How can we do better next time? I do not think having two
processes is going to simplify at all, so I am not sure how well that
proposal will help.

It seems there are complaints about the process, then complaints about
changing the process in trying to improve it. How can we improve the
process that people complain about so much if we can't change it?

Does anyone want to take up the task of writing and maintaining the
theme process documentation, and making sure it is well-publicized?

> > The main problem for me is that every time the topic of release art
> > comes up, I don't think 'fun' and 'cool', I think 'pain' and get a
> > feeling of dread and despair :( And that's not cool. And after going
> > through all that hard work and time, still we get negative comments (and
> > I understand we can't satisfy everyone, but that on top of having to
> > work so hard and not have much fun, makes it even less enjoyable.) I
> > feel that this problem should be addressed so we can make theming fun
> > again, but I'm not sure how. This was the idea I came up with but I'm
> > very open to other proposed solutions.
> > 
> > Is this fair or am I being overly dramatic?
> What I feel when I think about fedora themes is high entry level and
> confusion about the process.

Do you have a better idea? Can you commit to helping make it better?
> > We don't have to have so many. We can aim for, 2 general-purpose, 1 for
> > pink-pony lovers like me, and 1 to appeal to children. Three personas,
> > four images, to me this seems quite do-able?
> Again. We could have those on DVD install, but definitely not on Live
> Spins.

See my question above.


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