Amazing MacPaint Art

Remember the endlessly epic MacPaint? All through my childhood and adolescent Macintosh years, I tried to master its sheer brilliance by creating hideous black and white abstract art with titles like “Square Dancing in a Blender”. Having zero actual illustration talent, I wasn’t able to manage much else, but I was ever in awe of anyone who could actually draw anything more than a stick figure (in a blender).

For me, it was basically the only thing I could actually use on the Macintosh, which I first acquired hand-me-down when I was somewhere in the ballpark of 9 years old. For some years prior to that, my step-brother had been creating MacPaint artwork for me and faxing it to me for special occasions. (Remember the fax machine?) I spent hours I should’ve spent getting fresh air hunkered over my mouse, attempting to draw a straight line.

Nowadays I’ve moved on from Macs but I will always have a healthy appreciation for pixels neatly arranged in what was, as far as software goes, one of the greatest time-wasting tools ever invented. And so it is with great pleasure and fervent hope that you too fondly remember those grand, golden days in digital art that I present to you some pretty damn amazing MacPaint art…painted, of course, by those far more talented than me.

Preface: For those who don’t recall MacPaint, it was a bitmap-based paint program developed by Bill Atkinson of Macintosh’s original dev squad. It hit the streets standard with Macintosh in 1984, and was also available for purchase separately for a mere $195, or approximately $400 in today’s financial climate. MacPaint was so awesome it stayed on the market until 1998 – 10 years after its last version, 2.0, had been released.

Without further delay, the art:

The much vaulted Japanese girl woodcutting as created on MacPaint.

A near pointillist landscape as only MacPaint could present it.

A Macintosh on MacPaint; the nostalgia is almost palpable.

A river runs through MacPaint.

Now if you’ll pardon me, it’s time for me to wipe the tears of longing for defunct-software-for-even-more-defunct-hardware from my eyes.

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