Over the months I use the ubiquitous iPad 2 I have purchased and tried a number of drawing-, and art-apps, but I have also used the iPad in combination with online drawing applications. Some of these apps really make the most of the iPad´s capabilities and screen size. In combination with a stylus (I use an Ozaki stylus) you can just sit anywhere and draw. I still prefer the Wacom Cintiq. Its pressure sensitivity, precision, and sensitivity to angle and rotation are unequalled. But the Cintiq confines you to your desk, while with the iPad you can sketch on the go. The iPad can take the role of sketchbook, while the Cintiq may be the equivalent of the studio easel. This may soon change again when the elusive Wacom Inkling, a real drawing pen that stores your work, is available again.
The combination of iPad and stylus allows for more precision, and fine cross-hatching than I expected. Zooming in, you can work in surprizing detail, when the app allows it, that is. After some time the resistance of the rubber tip of the stylus against the surface of the tablet can create an uneasy strain in your arm. You don’t have this with the Wacom, but there people sometimes complain about the lack of resistance. Nothing is quite like the soft resistance of pencil on paper, of course.
Among the apps I have tried sofar are Wasabi Paint, iDesign (t be reviewed in the next post), Intaglio SketchPad (to be reviewed in the next post), Adobe Ideas, Sketchbook Pro, Bamboo Paper, and Moleskine. A host of other apps are still waiting to be used. IDesign by Touchaware, Intaglio SketchPad by Purgatory Design, Adobe Ideas by Adobe, Wasabi Paint by Lofopi, and Sketchbook Pro by Autodesk are serious apps that can even be used in a real production pipeline (enabling you to work in otherwise wasted situations, like waiting for your children when they have violin lessons, or sitting on the couch wondering why most of the 700+ channels in your TV subscription just suck). The others (Bamboo Paper, and Moleskine) allow you to take quick notes and dabble. Their design is fantastic, but they are too limited to be of any serious use.
In a next post I will look at their functionality is more detail, also showing some of more technical, vector-based apps, here I just give some quickly made drawings. I start with the very clever online tool DA Muro, by Deviant Art. I must say that DA Muro works better with a Cintiq than with the iPad.