Skip to content

iPad, why do you tease me so?

October 22, 2012

I really really really want the iPad to be a great painting device.

The form factor, the screen, of course the touch – it’s sooooo close. And yet so far.

I vacillate between thinking there’s something wrong with me – I should be able to master this thing if only I wasn’t so easily distracted. Then, on alternate days, cursing the Apple engineers for leaving out pressure sensitivity (no doubt,  a selling point in the future). Then railing at the brush engines out there. Software is, imo, spending too much time emulating analog materials, and there’s not enough research on digital mark making. (As an aside – Adobe’s  app Eazel has a beautiful interface that uses all five fingers of touch – sadly it now conflicts with the pad’s native gesture controls. Still – was a great example of lateral thinking that hasn’t been topped by other drawing aps).

I still haven’t experimented with ‘from scratch’ custom brushes in ProCreate. Right now I’m just tweaking the default tools. I’ll get around to sinking time into that someday. It’s on the list.

Meanwhile, here’s  a life drawing session with the ink tools.

For context, I should mention, the model was a contortionist (really) so I’ve had to leave out a bunch of poses that were just a cartoon brawl of feet and hands.

More on this someday. Because I really really really want the iPad to be a great painting tool. Even tho it aint.

10 Comments leave one →
  1. October 22, 2012 9:15 pm

    “Software is, imo, spending too much time emulating analog materials, and there’s not enough research on digital mark making.” I think you’ve really hit on something here that applies in a broader sense, beyond drawing. Way back when people where first justifying the need for a computer at home, one excuse was to balance your checkbook. Yeah, but that’s just as easy to do with $25 calculator. Eventually products like Quicken offered more benefits and ease-of-use than the analog process.

    • October 22, 2012 9:19 pm

      Good point Andrew. Like the way Scrivener is so much more than a digital typewriter. http://www.literatureandlatte.com/scrivener.php

      I expect this broader way of thinking is coming soon to art aps. I can’t complain about painting in photoshop for instance – you can do almost anything. I’m just impatient for it to hit mobile !

  2. October 22, 2012 10:16 pm

    There are some pressure sensitive styli available now. At least 3 choices, with 3 different techniques. For me, I think its my inflexibility with the tool rather than the tool itself. Given my druthers, I’ll take physical media over digital any day.

  3. October 22, 2012 10:17 pm

    Thanks for the post. Sorry to hear it’s not quite there yet. Yes, I was just thinking yesterday it would be cool if Ipad had a tablet extension for size and pressure. Artrage seems pretty cool. I’ve only dabbled in it, but love the physical media simulation (ie thick paints) http://www.ipadcreative.com/blog/2012/3/19/artrage-goes-to-version-14-gets-retina-display-support.html
    – Kyle

  4. October 22, 2012 10:48 pm

    Agree — though in some respects it depends on what you’re aiming for as a result — it doesn’t necessarily need to be just like the results we get using physical media. Jorge Colombo’s New Yorker cover finger paintings are an example – they’re a conscious use of the digital medium (an iPhone) but have a style to themselves, no? If you’re not familiar with them, they’re at http://www.jorgecolombo.com/fingerpaintings/index.htm

    • October 22, 2012 11:07 pm

      Ya I think that’s the thing – if we’re going to us a device, we should paint in a device inspired way – adapt our methods to the tool. So rather than go for a pressure stylus, I’m using fingers and and layers for this stuff – drawing spazzy marks and erasing back – in lieu of being able to draw directly controlled brush marks. So that’s a first-stage adaptation.

      I just wish there were more pure finger gestures. Like – what if you could pinch and zoom brush sizes instead of using a slider? or pick a color wheel by rotating three fingers and pinching in and out to ‘dial’ the color wheel and value at the same time. Or make layers and drop layers with flicks – instead of all this clicking into palettes. See – I should have taken some programming. Always a user, never a maker T_T

      • October 22, 2012 11:14 pm

        Cool ideas!
        “what if you could pinch and zoom brush sizes instead of using a slider? or pick a color wheel by rotating three fingers and pinching in and out to ‘dial’ the color wheel and value at the same time. Or make layers and drop layers with flicks – instead of all this clicking into palettes”

  5. October 23, 2012 4:45 am

    Hi

    I was shocked when apple didn’t have pressure. I know it will be a feature in the future and it will also be labeled “revolutionary” but several tablets already have pressure, like mine:

    http://jonnydraws.blogspot.ca/2012/06/lenovo-thinkpad-tablet-artists-take.html

    I like apple products… But i needed a tablet to do art on specifically.

    • John Ward permalink
      October 26, 2012 6:33 am

      There’s a rumor that Samsung has been developing a tablet for Google that will be announced this Monday. It’s rumored to have a resolution that will be higher than the current generation Retina Display on the iPad.

      Since it’s being released by Google, I don’t know if it will include the stylus and pressure sensitivity, but the Samsung Slates do have those features, but they are stuck with lower resolutions.

      Here’s a link to an article about the rumored tablet: http://news.cnet.com/8301-1035_3-57536925-94/google-to-unveil-android-4.2-nexus-4-phone-nexus-10-tablet/

  6. October 26, 2012 7:57 pm

    These are beautiful, Marc!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 213 other followers

%d bloggers like this: