Back to Digital Painting

Initially, I began as a digital artist, It’s been nearly a year and a half since I’ve actually painted something in Photoshop. Just got back into it recently, and boy did I miss it. I’m pleased to find that my traditional painting style now translates pretty well back into digital illustrations, too! 🙂

Old tablet rant…

The whole reason I initially stopped painting digitally was (I think properly explained in a previous post), in short, because my computer didn’t work with my fancy drawing tablet. So, I decided to work on traditional art instead, and loved it more.

I’ve since gotten rid of my fancy Cintiq because I felt guilty for letting it sit there collecting dust. Of course 3 months after that happens, my old Intuos tablet I’ve had for a good 7 years, decides to hate me. I spend almost 2 hours every time I hook it up, messing with the drivers. Plus the cord has been chewed up a bit and falls out of the tablet in the middle of working.

I think those days of shoving it in my bag and running around campus during college did the thing no favors whatsoever.

…end rant

I’ve got a new drawing tablet now, though, so I’m really looking forward to adding digital paintings and commissions to my portfolio. It’s the Wacom Intuos medium with Bluetooth, and I love it! (It’s even minty green) I would definitely recommend this tablet to anyone looking to start out with digital art.

Programs I Use for Digital Painting:

I am often asked what programs I use to paint with, so here are a few favorites:

  • Adobe Photoshop: I learned to use this in college and while it can have a pretty steep learning curve, it has so many great features. Personally, this is my go-to.
  • Paint Tool SAI: I’m not sure if this program is still available, but I love it and I have been using it for about 10 years now. It’s very simple, inexpensive and worth every penny. The blending brushes it has are amazing, and you can make such crisp line work with it. (Not available for Mac unfortunately)
  • Fire Alpaca: Similar to SAI, but I personally get a little confused with the layout. It does offer crisp lines and still has a simple enough layout that makes getting started pretty easy. It’s free and is also available for Mac, which makes it a good replacement for SAI.
  • Krita: An awesome Photoshop replacement. A lot of cool features and brush settings, though definitely has a learning curve to get used to. Also, I found it super difficult to set my eyedropper tool to a different hotkey which is, oddly, a deal-breaker for me. This program is amazing and is also free.

Here are a few of the pieces I’ve tried recently with the new tablet, all in Photoshop:

 

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