[Scribus] making cards in FOSS, as opposed to Quark, et al

Louis Desjardins louisdesjardins
Wed Nov 9 15:31:35 CET 2005

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>On Tuesday 08 November 2005 20:36, Dr. Scott S. Jones wrote:
>>  I read with interest your post about Scribus and Quark.
>>  I am trying to tackle a project involving some layout of text with graphics
>>  for spanish cards, as those shows at this link :
>  > www.2ndlanguagesuccess.com.
>>  Currently, we have a designer who uses Quark (version 6 I believe, or 7 if
>>  that is out now). She is a good designer but she is exploiting us, cause we
>>  don't have any way to manipulate the cards, we don't own quark, or
>>  Illustrator, so this designer has us by the balls.

Hi Dr. Jones,

Your designer, as thousands of designers worldwide, is probably not 
aware of the FLOSS capabilities. The actual use of Quark or any other 
proprietary software using proprietary file format can be seen as a 
trap for *both* the designer and the client. From that point of view, 
you will find it to be difficult with a lot (if not almost all) 
designers until FLOSS catch their attention, or until companies like 
Quark and the like fully embrace the principles of open file formats. 
My assumption is we are slowly (but surely) getting there.

As an everyday user of Quark, I don't think I am "exploiting" my 
clients! But I do know that they have to buy a licence of Quark if 
they want to edit my files themselves, provided I agreed to let go 
those files at delivery time. At the same time, the client remains 
the only owner of the content, original text and pictures that he 
provided the designer to make the job. So he can go elsewhere if he 
is not happy with the designer. More: many clients have ended clearly 
asking, even demanding, that we provide the files in Quark file 
format because they feel this gives them the "freedom" to go 
elsewhere and have those files edited, if needed. By doing that, they 
are of course closing the trap on their own hands in the long term. 
But at the same time, how can they be proved wrong on the short term? 
Provided *roughly* 70% of the designers are using Quark, is it not 
reasonable to think that most everyone in this industry can deal with 
a Quark document? This said, I plead like most people on this list 
and supporters of Scribus, for open source software, open file 
formats. The trap and threat of proprietary formats is real and 
clearly affects the perennity of the documents we all produce using 
those formats.

I am incline to think this is a great occasion to talk with your 
designer and explain the value of Scribus, GIMP and Inkscape, for 
example, which can all be used to produce high quality jobs. When 
more and more clients will be aware like you are about FLOSS, and 
will be putting positive pressure on the designers, if I may put it 
this way, it will be a great step towards the adoption of Scribus and 
its friends into the graphic art industry.

I think what really holds our "balls" is mostly ignorance (and money).

Only a few thoughts to share.

For the short answer to your question, I am with Craig. Provided you 
have the skills and knowledge, Scribus is a great and serious tool 
for professionnal DTP. Please note the fonts used to design your 
cards are under licence as well, so you might have a close look into 
this. And if you are planning to use the same layout, make sure your 
designer has granted you the rights to modify or edit her layout.

Best regards,


>  >
>>  I have been playing with Scribus sometime now and with GIMP. I would like
>>  to know if you think I could create these cards using Scribus/Gimp and
>>  other FOSS tools?
>>  Thanks for any input.
>>  Dr. Scott Jones
>Yes, I think you could reproduce them in Scribus. Should not be a major issue.
>If you'd like to send me a pdf version of one I can give it a closer look to
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