Crimson Daggers — Art forum

Full Version: Help with tablets
You're currently viewing a stripped down version of our content. View the full version with proper formatting.


About to start using Tablets for the first time and need advice...

I've colored for years, and did so in comics for a long time just before everything converted to digital coloring so I was producing color guides and did Blue Line jobs (in fact that change was one of the things that forced me out of the business, I didnt have the money to keep up with the technology change) - some here will recognize the terms and the processes. I have been coloring digitally in Photoshop for a long time but never made the change to using a tablet. But I know I have reached the limits both in effect and speed that I can achieve with just a mouse. A buddy is giving me his bamboo so I can see if I can transition to the new tool before plunking down huge $$$ on a Cintiq or even an Intuos (although I can see how a Cintiq would be easier for me since my skill has been "direct" drawing surface.

So I can make progress in the most efficient manner and avoid getting discouraged what do you folks recommend? I hope to move from just coloring and cleaning my illustrations (Scans) and digital designs to doing more complex work and digital painting and sketching.

I Had a tiny Wacom touch pad many years ago, the sensitivity was lousy and I got discouraged pretty quickly because I couldn't seem to achieve anything usable or get comfortable with the tool. The feeling was like trying to use a charcoal stick to produce a technical illustration.

So what do you folks recommend?

Test it and play with it. Tablet opens for you new approach. Get some nice brushes check the resource thread for any other help. Try different painting software. And just practice. It's just the tool. If someone was painting in watercolors all life transition to oils will not result with masterpiece with first painting. Don't think about going digital as something negative. Let yourself be driven by curiosity. The worst that might happen is forcing yourself to something that you don't want to do.
I agree, practice will make you soon realise what your preference is and just generally improve your hand-eye coordination on a tablet (which takes patience). The important thing with a tablet is to give it time, you won't be great on it to begin with because it's a whole new way of working to get used to. I think most of us would love to draw directly on a Cintiq but the price and the practicality (ie. they are heavy as heck and cause some people eye and back strain) is too much for some!

Whichever tablet you settle on, after a time if it feels right then it's the right one for you. I use an A5 Intuos 3 at work which I think is discontinued now, but I love it so much that I luckily managed to find one on eBay for a steal and bought one for home use. Before that I tried a Bamboo at home and it was fine, but the pen was too small for me (I have large hands) so I upgraded. I have mine set up so that only a small portion of the drawing surface corresponds with my monitor, which I find the easiest way to paint as I don't have to move my hand so much. Hence, I don't need an A3 one which is cool because they are more expensive!

A Bamboo may well suit your needs, I did some paintings on it before I upgraded. In short, a super expensive tablet with a massive surface and loads of touch buttons / hot keys won't make you a better painter. In my experience they're all similar in terms of sensitivity and surface, with the only difference between my Bamboo and the Intuos 3 being that the Bamboo had a slightly rougher drawing surface.

Good luck!