Hej Stylus

I haven’t had a chance to play around with this yet but it looks interesting. The idea is that by offsetting your stylus you can get more of a brush stroke. I’m not entirely sure that will do what they claim but you can check it out for yourself easily enough by downloading it and trying it out.

You can learn more here.

Using Google’s “Tilt Brush” Artists Paint with Light

Google has commissioned six artists to paint and sculpt with light using the company’s virtual painting app Tilt Brush. And yes, the big G has captured the whole process, so you can watch the artists work on their masterpieces. The team used Kinect to film the artists at work and tweaked Tilt Brush to be able to show each brush stroke on a browser.

You can see what all the artist’s created as well as rotate in real time as they create AND even switch between what they see and what they look like creating it. Pretty nifty!

Check it out here.

Autodesk Sketchbook Pro 7 released!

SketchbookI’ve been working on the beta for this new version for the last six months and of course I have not been allowed to say anything but today I can finally break the silence on the brand spankin new Skletchbook Pro 7 which releases today at Sketchbook.com!

the biggest news about this new version is much awaited Flipbook feature which brings a timeline to Sketchbook and allows to actually ANIMATE within the program! Add to that the ability to draw with the most natural pencil tool on the market and this is a VERY powerful tool for animators. Now I won’t lie to you, it’s a work-in-progress and as of yet, you can not put sound on the timeline nor can you export a video. You render out frames, place them in a video editor and build a movie that way. You do however have the ability to have multiple layers and the background layer actually stays throughout the timeline which allows you to actually do a background behind your animation. You could also use that layer to place a studio’s board template on it which will allow you to storyboard.

Sketchbook Pro 7 is available online both Mac and PC for $65 at Sketchbook.com right now. Also, new with this build is the option now to subscribe for only $24 a year and of course you’ll get free upgrades as they add new features.

A natural drawing experience

Draw in SketchBook Pro and discover an authentic, natural drawing experience that is as close to pencil, pen, marker, or brush on paper as a digital art tool can be.

Autodesk SketchBook Pro Steady Stroke

Steady Stroke

Steady Stroke brings greater predictability and control to strokes, helping with precision and confidence.

Autodesk Sketchbook Pro Traditional Tools

Ruler, Ellipse and French Curve

Ruler, Ellipse, and French Curve tools for designers who enjoy working with traditional toolsets.

Autodesk SketchBook Pro Brushes

Customizable Brushes

Do-it-yourself brushes give maximum control over the finest details of your art.

Autodesk SketchBook Pro Perspective Tool

Lay down perfect perspective with all-new Perspective Guides

Lay down perfect perspective in seconds with 1 point, 2 point, 3 point, and fisheye perspective guides. Freely adjust vanishing points and horizon lines on, or beyond, the canvas.

Flipbook key frame animation toolset

For the first time, artists can express motion with SketchBook Pro. Built in collaboration with the Autodesk® Maya® team, this simple key frame timeline enables a traditional animation workflow in the familiar SketchBook environment.

Autodesk SketchBook Pro Flipbook

Layer enhancements for even more control

New layer blend modes, multi-layer selection, ten levels of layer grouping, and background layer color selection makes whole or partial image manipulation, transformation, and selection easier than ever.

More features to discover and explore

Experience the Copic® Markers and the Copic® Color Library along with over 100 preset brushes, pens, pencils, markers and airbrushes.

Autodesk SketchBook Pro Enhanced Selection Tool

Enhanced selection tools including magic wand selection and drawing within the selection.

Autodesk SketchBook Pro Distort Transform Tool

Distort transform gives you the freedom to manipulate your image easily.

Autodesk SketchBook Pro Flood Fill Tool

Dynamic flood fill tools with solid, linear, and radial gradients with complete control of the fills.

Discover amazing art created with SketchBook Pro

Bobby Chiu

Bobby Chiu

Creature Box

CreatureBox Inc.

Creature Box

CreatureBox Inc.

Jay Shuster

Jay Shuster

Kyle Runciman

Kyle Runciman

Patipat Asavasena

Patipat Asavasena

Software: Drawing programs

Sketchbook Pro

With the news that Adobe is intending on forcing artists to pay monthly I sat down to compile other choices for digital artists of which there are many. Most cost over $25, some of them are free and even two are online solutions.

I categorized them bitmap and vector. My personal favorite is Sketchbook Pro because of it’s ease of use, superior pencil mimicking and small foot print (how much space it takes up on the hard drive) all which contribute to make it the best solution in my opinion. As you can see it’s relatively cheap in comparison as well.

Below is a comprehensive list of drawing software available to the digital artist in 2013. If I missed your favorite, comment below, explain why and I will gladly add it.

Bitmap software

Adobe Photoshop (PC and Mac)- $49 per month subscription

When it comes to drawing programs Photoshop is without a doubt the most well known Right out of the box it’s not the best drawing software but and is relatively decent when you finagle with it a bit. My favorite tools in Photoshop include the Liquify brush and the Free Transform tool

Autodesk Sketchbook Pro (PC and Mac) -$59
Hands down my favorite simply because it’s so easy to use, can be installed on a Motion LE1600 Tablet PC which you can get dirt cheap these days, it’s got some killer drawing tools and you can easily create custom brushes as well as edit the toolbar to your liking.

Corel Painter (PC and Mac)-$199
Painter is an extremely powerful tool but it’s interface has been sorely lacking since it’s introduction back in the early 90’s. Features include mixable paint, dripping watercolors and a brush nozzle that will let you turn any art into a brush. Personally not a fan.

Ambient Design Artrage (Mac/PC/Android)-$49.90
Artrage started out as a winner of a proof of concept software contest for the release of Microsoft’s Windows XP Tablet PC edition. It has since grown into a powerful painting and drawing app and is easy on the wallet to boot. There are many features but my favorite is the mixable paint. Drag one color over another and the two smear! I don’t believe any other program can boast that.

Open Canvas (PC) -$59
Not very familiar with Open Canvas. Anybody? Beuller? Beuller? Beuller?

PaintTool Sai (PC)-$5
PaintTool Sai’s interface to be convoluted and poorly designed and I had trouble even finding out how to make a brush to draw with. It felt like an old program that has not been updated in years.

ArtWeaver (PC)-$37.65
Artweaver is a relatively decent piece of drawing software and it’s interface is reminiscent of old school Photoshop 5 or 6. It has many of the tools you’d need to sketch but I find it lacking

TV Paint (PC/Mac/ Linux/Android)- $1522.79
A very expensive and powerful piece of software that is much more than a drawing tool. You can storyboard, composite and do particle arrays with it. That said, I find it’s interface and toolset to be one of the worst I’ve ever seen and really would only use it if forced to. It’s pencil tools however are almost as good as Sketchbook Pro’s.

Pixarra Twisted Brush (PC) -$19
Not a bad Photoshop replacement but it’s interface seems a bit cluttered and not so user-intutitive. Does support pressure sensitivity though.

CG Illust (PC)-$80
This online software and being free it’s certainly the right price but I found it to stutter if I drew too fast. Your results might vary.

Sumo Paint (PC , Mac and free ONLINE)-$19
A truly remarkable piece of software that you feel right at home using because it’s essentially the same thing as Photoshop… Online.

Paint.net (Online)
Pretty much the same thing as Sumo Paint and free as well. it has pressure sensitivity which works well. Tends to stutter a bit if you draw too fast.

Project Dogwaffle (PC) Free
Project Dogwaffle is an ambitious project of one man who has built it into an interesting array of tools. It’s basically easy to use, can be used to draw with and even has animation and particle plugins. that said, I don’t think i would ever use it in a professional environment but the prive is right.

Sketchpaint (PC)-Free

Gimp (PC/Mac)
The GIMP is arguably the most powerful free photo editor available today. With that comes the Photoshop comparisons. Often lauded as the “free Photoshop,” the GIMP does offer many features similar to Photoshop, but it has a steep learning curve to match. Unless I’m missing something though, it does NOT support pressure sensitivity which is a deal-breaker for me.

Vector Software

Autodesk Sketchbook Designer– $75
A capable vector editor similar to Sketchbook Pro

Adobe Illustrator -$49 per month subscription
Long the juggernaut of vector editing, there really isn’t anything that can beat it as of yet. Personally I’m not a fan of it’s drawing tools as well as it’s kludgey interface but if you want streamlined crisp vector art, Illustrator is hard to beat.

Pixelmator (Mac)
Not the greatest painting/drawing tools, but is a great alternative to Photoshop for most people.

Intaglio (Mac)
Intaglio supports both bitmap and vector but is primarily a very simple Illustrator clone.

Artboard (Mac)
A VERY simple vector program.

Inkscape (PC /Mac/Linux)- Free
Currently the only free vector drawing program and it works very well for what it is. Not as advanced as Illustrator but what do you expect for the price?

Acorn (Mac)
Vector-based. Used by tons of UI designers.