This past Monday I gave a presentation on Corona Geek about different graphics software that can be used to create app artwork. Check out the video with show notes here: http://coronalabs.com/blog/coronageek/corona-geek-hangout-92/ or just watch the video below.
I recently had the chance to read through SketchBook Pro Digital Painting Essentials by Packt Publishing. The book is an overview and how-to guide of Sketchbook Pro digital painting software by Autodesk. It’s written for the computer software version, but many of the tools and techniques may be transferred over to the iOS and Android versions as well, just the user interface will be different.
If you’ve wanted to try Sketchbook Pro, but were too intimidated or weren’t sure how to get started, this book is a great starting point. It goes through all of the tools and how to modify each one to suit your style of drawing and painting. The book covers everything from the interface to layers to sketch and coloring. It is an in-depth starter guide to Sketchbook Pro and how to get started with the software.
However, it is important to note that this book does not teach you how to create specific pieces of art. The book does tell you how the author created each part of a specific piece that is shown, but it does not give you any step-by-step drawing directions. If you’re looking for a book that takes you through the process of creating the artwork shown on the cover, this is not it. If you’re looking for a book to show you how to use and create the tools necessary to create works of art, this book is definitely worth checking out.
Overall, SketchBook Pro Digital Painting Essentials is a great starter book to anyone interested in using Sketchbook Pro. It gets right to the heart of the subject without presenting you with unrelated filler.
I’m always looking for new software that makes creating mobile apps and artwork easier or even just makes the process more fun. Last night, I discovered Mischief drawing software, and I have to say, I’m pretty impressed. You can go to their website www.MadeWithMischief.com and download a free 15-day trial to test out for yourself. If you like it, a full license is only $65 USD.
So what is Mischief? I think it’s a cross-between Sketchbook Pro and Adobe Flash, which if you follow my blog and tutorials, you know I’m a huge fan of both (Flash CS6 at least, I’m still iffy about Flash CC). It has a user interface similar to Sketchbook Pro, but instead of bitmap, it’s vector-based, allowing you to zoom-in infinitely to draw the smallest details. Since it’s similar to Sketchbook Pro, the interface is very straightforward and not much is hidden in submenus up in the toolbar. It has the ability to export JPEG and .PSD files, so if you are a Photoshop user, you can enhance your artwork further. I’ll probably use the .PSD export feature to convert my files into .PNGs for mobile applications.
Although it isn’t necessary, they do recommend that you use Mischief with a drawing tablet to get the full-effect. This is true of just about all drawing software, though. If you’re fortunate enough to have a Wacom graphics tablet at your disposal, I think you’ll really enjoy using Mischief. Without even going into my Wacom preferences, Mischief already allowed my “Undo” shortcut button to function and pressure sensitivity works flawlessly. In all honesty, I think Mischief is more responsive to a drawing stylus than Adobe Flash.
If I had to list any negatives about Mischief, I would say it’s the lack of a paint bucket tool. I know it’s more geared towards artists who color in layers with different types of brushes, but I’m still a huge fan of being able to paint a large area with a single click. If they were to add a paint bucket tool, I might switch over completely from Flash to create artwork for mobile applications.
Overall, I would definitely recommend checking out Mischief if you like to draw. I know I’m going to be utilizing the 15 day trial as much as I can. Check out my demo video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LjY-mzuArQs or watch it below.
I was out of town for my birthday when this went live, but I wrote a new tutorial for www.RayWenderlich.com about how to draw on an iPad using Sketchbook Pro. It’s good for beginner’s who don’t have much experience drawing, but more advanced artists may find some useful tips in there as well. Enjoy!