Microsoft Paint has been the default raster graphics editor on windows for over twenty years. Paint has always been barebones with it comes to functionality, with little more than a colour palette and a few basic tools. The last major update was for Windows 7, when users got the ability to use brushes and shapes. There are major changes coming to Paint for Windows 10. A new version in development by Microsoft was leaked on Twitter.

Video: Introducing the New Paint Preview app https://t.co/wHzeAQkVqy pic.twitter.com/pk1f2MbNsM

― WalkingCat (@h0x0d) October 7, 2016

The update is oriented towards the users of a pen. Finally, there are layers of a kind in paint. Users can now draw in 3D objects in a scene. Shapes drawn in 2D can be converted to 3D. The 3D objects can be painted over, or stickers can be stuck on them. There are even assets available, that are created by other users. Putting in a community of user created content is a great idea. There are also boards, which can be shared between users, allowing for collaborative painting.

The 3D creation tools do not burden the user with advanced and precise controls, such as 3D Studio Max. However, there are still plenty of options available for those who are familiar with professional 3D content creation software. There are two options for converting 2D drawings to 3D objects. One option is to make them blocky, good for buildings and chairs. Another option is to inflate the shapeswith smooth edges, good for fish or balloons. The text or drawn objects can also be positioned in 3D space, without converting them to 3D. This leaked tutorial video demonstrates some of these 3D capabilities.

Video: Introducing Smart Select and Make 3D featurea of the New Paint Preview app https://t.co/SEvLqTr7kr pic.twitter.com/gl4sPW8xfG

― WalkingCat (@h0x0d) October 7, 2016

These are powerful features, but even after these additions, Paint continues to be less powerful than other raster image editors available. There are a few essential capabilities overlooked in Paint that are available even in free alternatives such as Gimp or Paint.net. Layers was something that would have given Paint users a lot more options to play around with. Scripting is another essential feature for power users of an image editing application. There is no support for third party plug-ins, which would allow the community or users to add their own features. Colour correction is another basic feature that Paint does not support. There is no support for selection editing, where changes affect only a part of the image.

Windows has added 3D painting before basicfeatures in competing paint applications. The current round of changes are welcome additions, and do make the default image editing application on Windows a little more powerful. Windows claims the New Paint application is designed for users with a range of skill levels. Users will continue to have to install an additional raster graphics editor for essential image editing capabilities.

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