My new Intuos4

This isn’t going to be a very in-depth look at this tool, but I wanted to make a couple comments. First off, the Intuos4 Tablet is a graphic tablet designed by Wacom. I am testing out a graphic tablet mainly to decide if using a Cintiq would be something I am interested in doing. Unlike a graphic tablet, which you draw on and watch the results on the monitor, the Cintiq is a monitor which you draw on O_O. As you can expect, it is fairly expensive, so I wasn’t sure if I would even want to spend the money on one.

I bought the Intuos this weekend, out of the 4 sizes; I picked the smallest, which has a workspace of about 4x7inches. They do range to much larger, but I have limited realestate on my desk, since I share it, so the larger tablet would probably be more of a nuisance. I do currently work with a dual monitor, but after configuring the drawing area, I was able to get the tablet to only work with monitor 1. At first I was only getting use of 50% of the tablet drawing area. After I figured out that setting, I played around with button options, changing the first of the 2 pen buttons to Pan/Scroll, and the second to erase. I have not determined if the other tip of the pen is an eraser. I haven’t found it to be that way, but I may not have been on the correct layer.

After a couple spaced out hours of practice I did finally get the hang of the tablet. I found that drawing slowly and carefully got the best results. I normally sketch pretty quickly, not always to be a benefit, but it certainly didn’t work at all on the tablet. At first I only tried drawing circles, which were all sorts of oblong shapes, and then I tried to draw a simple face… Things were a little discouraging at first, but like I said, slowing down, and carefully planning out the placement of the strokes really made the difference for me. I actually got a very nice character study out of it, I was pretty surprised about it too.

The pen has awesome sensitivity, and it really does feel like I am drawing on paper. I really enjoy it, but I did run into a snag. After I created a decent sketch, it was time to make use of Photoshop, which was the entire reason I decided to get a drawing tablet. You see, my biggest issue with doing anything on the computer, when the origin is a sketch, is the problems I have getting a clean line art out of it. I thought that using a drawing tablet would 1. Save time on scanning, 2. Make for a cleaner image, since I don’t have eraser marks, and 3. Make creating a line art much more attainable.

I do remember creating some decent line art from sketches, but what I found with the tablet is that when I would draw on a transparent background, the filters didn’t work as they would normally. They would only work if I had a white background, at least with the fine lines I am used to creating. Anyways, I was pretty upset; it seemed that the tablet wasn’t really working how I expected it to. Even more discouraging, I found that many artists would just trace entire sketches. That is daunting, considering the amount of artwork I am expecting to put out in the next couple of months. I don’t want to spend hours upon hours tracing the images I draw. Totally defeats the purpose of the drawing tablet.

I digress… the point is, after a bit of research I did find a wonderful tutorial which quickly, and easily creates a line art based off of my sketch (virtual or hardcopy). I am pleased to say that I will be able to keep my tablet without guilt, since it wasn’t cheap. I would have felt guilty to keep it, only to do sketches and then still need to spend so much time tracing them. All in all I am very happy with this tablet; hopefully I can show off some of my work soon.

Tags: , , , ,

Monday, July 12th, 2010 Design Tips, MyProjects Comments Off

The Price of Falling

Aang - Please come back to me...

The Price of Falling
Details: Web Comic
I am creating a webcomic based on the fanfiction written by Rast, on I had never read a fanfiction before, at least that wasn’t completely silly, but this particular one made me feel as if the creators of the series told this author the secret details of several missing weeks of plot. There isn’t a single hair out of place, everything fits perfectly, and really brings a feeling of closure for me. I wanted to bring it to life, and since I had never worked on a webcomic before, I figured why not use a beautifully scripted story as a starting point.

Sunday, July 11th, 2010 MyProjects, SneakPeak! Comments Off

Northstar Icelandic Horses

Northstar Icelandic Horses
Details: Website Re-Design Project
This horse farm was actually the home of my childhood and teenage dreams, and experiences. I spent hours upon hours working horses and daydreaming as I walked through the orchard. I am pleased to work on this project, and give a little something back to the people who gave me a priceless experience that I will keep the rest of my life.

Sunday, July 11th, 2010 MyProjects, SneakPeak! Comments Off

Avatar: The Last Airbender

I had always been interested in this series, I watched it upon release, but I couldn’t continue to watch due to some schedule conflicts. Here I am now, finishing up the story, and I have not been disappointed.

Although the show is meant for a much younger age range, I absolutely love it. The combination of the rich fantasy world, based on many different Asian and tribal cultures, visually powerful animation sequences, building romantic plot line, and main theme of friendship and hope, easily keeps me smiling, laughing, crying and cheering for the lead characters.

Visually, one of my favorite aspects of the series is the earthbender, Toph. Her fighting style, based on Southern Praying Mantis style, is so well expressed in her animations. Her motions are so intense, powerful and focused; her blind eyes are motionless which intensifies the feeling of her focus, it’s chilling! Quite frankly, she is a little bad ass, and I am always excited to she her strut her stuff.

Of course, I love the main character, his love interest and their amazing friends; they all have vast strength. Literally, wielding very skilled and amazing fighting abilities, but also how they are so determined, full of love and friendship. Seeing these young people grow into leadership roles really makes me happy, and sad for our own world. Our world being so tainted by greed and ignorance; what can I say? I am a bit of a dreamer.

Learning even though there are distinct boundaries, and divisions between the different races which inhabit this world, they are in all reality the same people; this is one of my favorite themes in the series. Learning how race and culture can not determine individual worth, and how good and evil can be found no matter where you look. Friendships and relationships are built everywhere the young heroes go. This series is amazing, I could go on and on about it; makes me wanna create all sorts of fanart. :)

Tags: , ,

Sunday, July 11th, 2010 Watching Comments Off

Son of a Witch

I recently finished reading Wicked: The life and times of the Wicked Witch of the West. The events that lead up to Dorothy getting the ruby slippers, and heading back to Kansas, from the point of view of the Wicked Witch.

I originally picked up the book after obsessing over the story in the Broadway production of a similar name, Wicked. I have purchased tickets to see the production within the month, but couldn’t contain myself till that time. I just needed to know more about the story, and the characters.

To my surprise, the story from the book is really nothing like the story within the play. Sure the characters have the same names, and for the most part same look, minus Fiyero, but most of their plots have been changed dramatically for the Broadway show. Despite the changes from what I had learned about the play, the book was rather enchanting, and I truly enjoyed it as well. An odd portion of the play, vrs the book is the absence of the assumed son of The Witch, Liir. He isn’t mentioned at all in the play.

Liir wasn’t my favorite character in the first book, so I didn’t have any impression I would want to read about him anyways, no matter his relationship with The Witch. I found him to be uninteresting and stupid, to be honest. He is described as a fat little kid, somewhat of a dunce, and a coward. I did want to know more about other characters in the book, such as Fiyero. Considering his relationship to Liir, I imagined there may be some information about him. I also had a bit of a lingering feeling of curiosity in general for the rest of the story. I haven’t gotten very far into this book however, so I will update with a review later on.

Tags: , ,

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010 Reading Comments Off