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Excellent primer for your average user
In the past I've used Adobe Photoshop for my own personal use, as well as at work for relatively simple work. However, after losing my discount a number of years ago, I've kept my eye open for good alternatives, especially for those that were asking for my recommendation on software.
I've always found Gimp to be a usability nightmare, so when Paint.NET started gaing traction a few years ago I was interested, but it was still fairly rough. But when I was asked by Packt Publishing if I'd be interested in reviewing their first book covering Paint.NET, I saw an opportunity to look at the software once again.
While reading the first couple chapters (there are eight total, spread over 115 pages) I was reading it as someone who had previously read books on using Photoshop and had a number of years experiencing actually using the software, so I was disappointed how much I already knew. However, once I put my mindset into someone who had never used software like this before, I found myself enjoying the book much more.
It's for the average individual, who just wants to do some basic editing of their photos (like my mother), that this book really shines. This relatively small book does a fairly good job of covering the functions a user needs to get started with Paint.NET. While I haven't tried yet, I feel fairly confident that giving this book to someone who has very little experience would have enough information at the end of the book to resize their photos and perform some basic editing (given Paint.NET's currently limited tools) on their own.
I also found a healthy amount of humor in this book, and despite being published near the end of last year, the version of Paint.NET covered by this book is still the current version, so there were no issues following along.
I think I would have liked to see a few more screenshots, as well as a few more examples (I strongly believe in iteration), but there's already a fair amount of both.
As long as you approach this book as a new user of Paint.NET/Photoshop/etcetera, I think you'll find this gets you going quickly, and therefore give Getting Start with Paint.NET a full 5 of 5 stars.