As many of you probably already know, Wacom announced their new mobile tablet line, which allows digital illustrators to draw on the go. This is a great idea, but many people aren’t too fond of being tied to Windows or Android operating systems, or dropping $1600-$2500 USD for the luxury to be mobile. Wacom also announced a pressure-sensitive stylus for the iPad for a more reasonable $100 USD, but it doesn’t have much of a benefit if your drawing app of choice doesn’t support it.
So lately I’ve been the hunt for a good drawing app that is similar to Adobe Flash and supports Wacom’s new stylus, does animation, vector lines, .PNG exporting, canvas resizing, and has features like pencil, paint brush and paint bucket. After downloading about 20 drawing apps, I’ve come to the conclusion it doesn’t exist or I still have yet to find it. A few I’ve tried are Sketchbook Pro, Sketchbook Ink, Adobe Ideas, Animation Desk, iDraw, Paper, Penultimate, Bamboo Paper, Skitch, Drawing Pad, Procreate, Artrage, ArtStudio, Inkist, and FlipInk.
Charles McKeever (@CoronaGeek) mentioned DoInk to me a few days ago, but before I bought another drawing app that didn’t fit the bill, I first decided to email the company who makes it. I asked if it supports individual .png exporting and Wacom’s new pen. To my surprise, DoInk is created by one developer who gave a prompt response saying those items were on his to-do list, but it’s difficult implementing everything he would like to see in the app. As an individual developer myself, I completely understand the balance of features you want to create and time available to do so.
I decided to give DoInk a shot, especially since I figured it’d be a fun app and it’d support a fellow indie app developer. The app is very similar to Adobe Flash, which was a great surprise. The lines aren’t vector, but they’re still pretty crisp and there is paint bucket support. The user interface is pretty intuitive, as soon as I opened the app I was able to draw a character and animate him. Once you have your animation drawn, you can overlay it on top of a background drawing, a pre-made background, or even a picture from your camera roll. Then when your scene is setup, you can export the video to your camera roll. From there you can send it to your DropBox or even edit it in iMovie.
So is DoInk the drawing app I’ve been searching for? Not really, it doesn’t support .png exporting or Wacom’s pen yet. Is it a lot of fun to use? Yes, it’s nice being able to create Flash-like animations on the go. Honestly, I think I might be stuck to sitting at a desk when it comes to drawing artwork for my apps, but DoInk is definitely a great app when you want to animate away from your computer chair. If you’re looking for a good animation app, definitely pick this one up.