WACOM TEST #1
This old dog is trying to learn a new trick. The above lettering was done on a Wacom Intuos Pro (medium size). This is the first time using a tablet since 2007. So far I’m not terribly frustrated.
MY PROCESS (for the past 7 years)
99.9% of my illustration work starts with pen + paper* and then I scan the drawing into Adobe Photoshop. Once I clean up my crisp black & white drawing I use Cocoapotrace to make my wacky line drawing vector. Then I apply digital color in Adobe Illustrator. Then I send it off to the client and make that money rain.
On rare occasions I might start with a pencil sketch before inking. That takes more time, so I usually don’t.
WHO’S A TABLET DUDE?
LOTS OF PEOPLE. So many illustrator friends are utilizing said “tablets” in their “workflow” and making work that is true to their established analog aesthetic. A few references that immediately come to mind are Jolby and Andy J. Miller. Josh from Jolby has been singing and dancing to the rhythms of a Cintiq ever since they birthed one into their studio. Andy’s work has evolved with the use of a tablet and he maintains his precarious line quality through filled shapes with ease. Part time studio-mate Alex DeSpain also uses a tablet for all of his work. He likes his tablet because it doesn’t get oil paint on his couch. He just taught me about “shape dynamics”.
Other tablet enthusiasts: Jen Mussari / Jason Sturgill / Rilla Alexander / Tom O’Toole / Andy Luce / Kyle Webster*
WHY A CYBERSTUDIO™*?
Digital vs. Analog—does it really matter? Nope. Depending on the context, still not really. Most people working in the industry have a process that mixes both analog and digital techniques. I say use whatever tool that is in front of you and use it well.
But also! Don’t be a stubborn turd and avoid learning new things that might make you more productive or challenge you to be less of a turd. I’m experimenting with tablets this week because I’m curious and think that for particular client projects, a tablet would make my process quicker.
"Learning would be more fun if you didn’t have to spend time doing it" —KBB
Should you learn to draw IRL before? I think so. I’m sure some people have developed a style by only using a tablet, however the experience of using analog materials is really important. Why? I said so. It feels good. It smells good. Spilling coffee on a drawing is something an illustrator should experience. Also, I’ve been told that you can create “digital brushes” from analog techniques.
But, first you should probably experiment with spray paint, charcoal, graphite, india ink, krink pens, markers, cut paper, watercolor, and other mediums so you can make weird mistakes that become part of your process.
TELL ME SOMETHING GOOD
I know you’re super lazy, so there’s a dude named Kyle that all these tablet users talk about and he’s made some brushes for you so you don’t have to experiment with anything. You can use your Cheeto covered fingers to scroll down and click on the link below without having to leave your bed.
I’m into this tablet thing at the moment, but can I really learn to draw on a digital screen? Maybe. Will I get bored with it? Possibly. Is there hope for us all? I tend to think so. Is this post boring? Definitely.
* More links to nerdy stuff here.
* Clifton said “cyberstudio” today in the our real world studio.
* LIVE LINK > Kyle Webster Photoshop Brushes
* How do you get more followers?