Jump to content
  • Advertisement
Sign in to follow this  

Sketching art programs: suggestions?

This topic is 3415 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

If you intended to correct an error in the post then please contact us.

Recommended Posts

Hi everyone, I'm looking for recommendations for software to do some sketching practice. I'm looking to improve my art skills up to an acceptable level, and since I am aiming for digital art and I'd like to also practice using my Wacom tablet I'd like to do a lot of this practice on the computer. To that end, I'm trialling a bunch of software to see what works best for me as a practice tool and am looking for recommendations. The essential task this software must be suited for is an equivalence to pencil sketching. I'd like to be able to work on something like a rough pencil sketch, flesh it out a bit, mark in some more definitive lines like with ink, and then if needed export the image and import it into another editor. However, the more work that can be done in the software the better. It will need an easy-to-use interface, since this is all about draft work, sketching and learning rather than coping with a byzantine GUI. It also needs to be Mac compatible, since that's what I'm using. Specifically, an iMac running Leopard (Mac OS X 10.5), using a Wacom Intuos3 6x8. Ideally, the software would also be able to be used for art within its own right. I'd like to use it for concept art, and if I could even use it for production level art, that would be fantastic. However this is merely desirable; I'm looking for something that's easy and fun to practice and sketch with and has the capability of exporting draft sketches for other programs above all else. Currently I've got two programs I'm looking at: I'm planning on trialling these and writing them up in my GameDev journal (if you're interested), but I'm looking for other suggestions. I might also try Inkscape, GIMP and Photoshop CS3 as a comparison since I've also got those installed, but I don't think they're quite right for the job. Any other sketching programs out there I should be aware of, and can add to my trialling test? Thanks in advance,

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Advertisement
I've heard Painter mentioned as being good for accepting tablet input in a naturalistic-looking way, but I haven't used it myself. And of course Gimp and Photoshop are at least ok for this sort of thing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I use Photoshop and only Photoshop for everything. Everything.

It was rough at first, but once I built up hand-eye coordination between the tablet and screen and got used to the various brushes and settings (which I am still learning to use in various ways and scales, honestly) it has worked out sufficiently.

Not a helpful perspective for your stated goal, I know. But what you're doing here looks interesting and I'll certainly follow it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I really like Art Rage for sketching compared to PSP7, Gimp and GGale especially using a tablet but haven't compared it to other sketch programs. I use it to sketch sprites before taking them into a more 'pixel' related package to finish them off so might not have used the same functions you are interested in. For me, it saves drawing, scanning, cleaning up etc. There are quite a few medium types (crayon, charcoal, pen etc) along with a few good and not so good extras (e.g. metallic paint and glitter).
Has proved well worth the price.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks for the replies, eveyone.

@sunandshadow:

Thanks for reminding me about Corel. I think Painter X might be a bit too pricey given I doubt I'll need all that functionality (it's about A$700), but Painter Essentials 4 is worth looking at. I can get that for about A$100, which is okay.

@dbaumgart:

I've got a copy of Adobe Creative Suite 3, but I haven't used Photoshop all that much. I mainly got the suite because I wanted Flash and I could get it with an education discount but with effectively the same full price license. Other than Flash I've only really used Illustrator, and I don't like the inteface that much (probably because I'm used to Inkscape. Illustrator's node tools irritate me). The Adobe interface seems to work better in Photoshop but all those options and tiny icons are intimidating for when I just want to do freehand work.

I really should use it some more - CS3 wasn't cheap even with the discount - but I'm going to see what else is out there.

@tonyg:

I'm going to buy ArtRage 2.5 regardless*. I like the paint and the minimal interface, and I think it would be a good way to learn more about appropriate use of colour, and as software goes it's pretty darn cheap at US$25. I'm still undecided on the pencil tool. It might depend a bit on what it is like with a very minimal paper texture. I've only tried the Starter version, and I can use just the presets with that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Gyrthok
Have you looked at the available list of tools on The Wiki? Pencil looks like it might be worth a look.

I'm skimmed it, but there's dozens of tools there. I'm looking for personal recommendations to help direct me to those worth taking a closer look.

I've seen the site for Pencil, but it appears to be a traditional animation tool with simple editing capabilities. Apart from the name, it doesn't appear to be especially aimed towards pencil sketching. Have you found it to be a really good sketching program regardless?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Trapper Zoid
@sunandshadow:

Thanks for reminding me about Corel. I think Painter X might be a bit too pricey given I doubt I'll need all that functionality (it's about A$700), but Painter Essentials 4 is worth looking at. I can get that for about A$100, which is okay.


I got a legitimate OEM copy of Corel Painter X from ebay for about $40.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Kwizatz
I got a legitimate OEM copy of Corel Painter X from ebay for about $40.

$40?! Is it legit? I've checked the listing and it doesn't say where the seller got it from. I'm a bit wary of buying software from eBay, especially when they're apparently just shipping you a CD and a registration key.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Advertisement
×

Important Information

By using GameDev.net, you agree to our community Guidelines, Terms of Use, and Privacy Policy.

Participate in the game development conversation and more when you create an account on GameDev.net!

Sign me up!