The new drawing tablet

On of my first drawings on the Wacom One HD drawing tablet

I have had the new tablet for a week. Its by Wacom. They call it the “One”. I will guess they meant it for me and others just dipping a toe into the waters of drawing on a display. I like it. It is a revelation, a sea change, a big deal. It is both like drawing or painting in the traditional way and very unlike them. Makes sense. The skills we’ve worked to develop, swinging a stylus or brush in accurate ways preserved in the new medium while adding capabilities. One early impression I’ve had is that of a fire hose at high pressure spewing color by the gallon, onto the “canvas”. Then with a control Z all those gallons of paint go back into the tube! and not a drop spilt. And….as if these were not enough….the drying time for thick, saturated layers of color is….milliseconds. I just throw another bucket of paint on the previous layer. It doesn’t show thru unless I set opacity low. So the layer by layer thin addition of color is possible. That’s an area I continue to explore. I have had a way of using saturated ungraded, unshaded, color in blocks. Bold and contrasted. But much of the magic is the software, GIMP, in this case. Yes I could be doing all this with a mouse, but, the feeling of painting the physical way doesn’t carry over with a mouse. I do find myself going back and forth between mouse and stylus.

This started as a photo taken at the Owl’s Head lighthouse in Maine, heavily modified

Productivity, the work produced per unit time, must double with the HD tablet. There isn’t the flatbed scanner to take a paper drawing into the digital realm. All attention can be focused on the 75 square inches of the tablet. But that concentrated effort leads to problems with posture. Keeping nose to the grindstone has its costs. Ergonometrics is the number one issue with these tablets after the functional requirements are met. The 32 inch Wacom costs $3200 or so and has a $500 stand one is encouraged to buy in addition. For my little Wacom I built a stand. Makes all the difference but I still need to get up and walk around every twenty minutes or so. If I don’t my neck tells me I need to.

This also started as a photo. One taken in BCN two months before the plague began

Part of my response to the plague has been to buy toys. The government is helping with that. I guess I can thank them for the $400 this Wacom costs. There is more money coming. What to buy? A nice camera I think. My old digital camera died, pushing me toward a really good Nikon Z format. I’m in the study and drool stage of acquisition now but soon…soon my paypal will pounce. Nothing to impress the really well healed, the Z5 with a 24-200mm lens…but my highwater mark, camera wise, when I get it. A retired pro photog I know told me, “spend money on the glass” ie, the best lens is a worthy investment. Its that way with tools in the shop. So I will.

Published by glensketch

Retired from electronics industry. Ex USN ex USAF ex expat in Ecuador.

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