Technology is on a constant move, always improving and reshaping what we do. For my DIGC335 project, I will be continuing one of my previous projects. The goal was to redraw all my cards that I had developed for a game . However due to my lack of experience in drawing, instead I will be showing my process of learning how to draw with a tablet. At the same time providing insights for others on how to draw as well, hopefully.
Before diving into the process, I would want to focus on how drawing itself has changed due to technology. Drawing has always been a part of humanity and artists around the world has provided us with many works of art to appreciate. However, art is viewed as an analog activity. This is because hand drawing is always preferred. Artist wants to express themselves with their brush strokes and style of drawing. If the computers are unable to mimic the artist style of drawing, how are they going to express what they want to draw? Nowadays tablets are specially made for artist. With the advancement of technology, tablets are now able to capture hand drawings as accurate as it can be.
It all started out with the Telautograph, 1888. An invention made by Elisha Gray, which allows long distant written communication (Harbert, 2014). It uses recorded electrical impulses that are that transmitted to the receiving telautograph. A pen is attached on the receiving end which then copies what is being written. This device was mainly used my banks and doctors. The next invention to contribute to the development of the tablet is The Stylator (Harbert, 2014). This was built in 1957 by Tom L. Dimond. The tablet is now able to connect straight to a computer instead of a receiving device. Apple came up with their graphics tablet in 1979. Similar to the tables we have now at the present moment.
Then Wacom Bamboo was made and has become the newest standard for graphics tablet technology (Harbert, 2014). Wacom tablets are able to digitize hand-drawn work. With a drawing software, such as photoshop. Artists are able to adjust and manipulate their drawing with ease. Wacom uses a clink-and-point manipulation, meaning the stylus and tablet are able to communicate more effectively (Kershner, 2017). It is also pressure-sensitive which allows more detail drawing to be done. An interesting feature about Wacom pen is that there is a digital chip inside of it. Because of that chip, it emits out a magnetic field which is then communicated to the tablet. From this, the pen is able to produce its own energy. Hence why no battery is needed for it (Kershner, 2017).
Following it back to the subject it is interesting how the improvement of technology promoted a shift from an analog base activity to a digital base. There is also something amazing happening when someone uses a tablet for their work. It is clearly showing us how our analog drawing is instantly being recognized and displayed to us digitally, that’s a huge step coming from the Telautograph.
Virtual Reality is also taking a step in shifting our analog art to a digital perspective. A new app has been developed by Google called Tilt Brush (https://www.tiltbrush.com/). This allows you to draw within virtual space and it looks amazing. Being able to transform your actions to a work of art is futuristic. They provide a variety of brushes that can help generate smoke, snow and even fire. This shows that the hardware itself is not just developing but the software as well is becoming more advance. Another point worth mentioning is the decrease in materials drawing digitally. As an artist, you would need paper, paint, pens and other materials to make your work. In a digital aspect, you would only need your laptop and your tablet. This would help save a lot in terms of resources and money.
In general, it is impressive to see how far tablets has developed. Although we are trying to digitize our experience I believe tablets will never take over drawing. Simply because art is about having options and exploring on them. Art is about finding what style suits you and how you go with it. Also, people doodle when they are bored. You can’t expect them to take out their tablet and wallet every time they feel like doodling. It takes time to set up and you would need some space to lay it all down.
I would be trying to teach myself on how to draw and documenting my progress. For starters, like any other person trying to learn something new you go to YouTube. I have found several youtubers that provide you with some basics on how to draw but I was still lost on how to use photoshop.
I realized one of my friends does draw digitally quite frequently. I had asked her on some tips and this is what she gave me
This was perfect for me! Since I am a beginner I didn’t even know what were the hot keys and what some of these functions did. Another advise she gave that helped me start drawing was drawing lines with confidence. This is because I draw repeated lines on my drawing to get the finally picture. In return, this would affect my finally drawing when it comes to coloring it in. Another good tip she reminded me to do is to always create layers. Layers help manage the whole drawing. If you were to do all your work on one layer. Coloring the final product would be much harder and making adjustments to your work can be messy.
On a side note, we are communicating via snapchat. The reason why I decided to use this platform is because I would still need my friend advises on the progress of my work. Instead of sending her pictures that will take up unnecessary space on her phone. Snapchat allows her to see it and it won’t be saved on her end. If she makes a comment of my work that I need to make note off. I would just take a screen shot instead. That’s all the testing I had done so far and will continue to update my progress in my next post!
Harbert, R. (2014). The Evolution of the Drawing Tablet. [online] prezi.com. Available at: https://prezi.com/obrvvsvvuwj7/the-evolution-of-the-drawing-tablet/ [Accessed 20 Mar. 2017].
Kershner, K. (2017). How Wacom Tablets Work. [online] HowStuffWorks. Available at: http://computer.howstuffworks.com/tablets/wacom-tablets.htm [Accessed 20 Mar. 2017].