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 CG Guy

Archive for April, 2010

I’m an Early iPad Adaptor & Sketchbook Pro Rocks!

Tuesday, April 27th, 2010


Yep, I’m an early Apple adaptor.  I got the first iPod, the first iTouch, jumped on the bandwagon when the iPhone arrived, even though I’m very disappointed by AT&T’s coverage, and now — drum roll — the iPad …. tah dah!  I’ve had my iPad for a week and have already taken it on a business trip in place of my laptop, used it to show prospective clients presentations on the spot, and also let them see how cool is.

The best iPad feature — it turns on INSTANTLY!  No longer do I  wait 5 minutes or more for a PC operating  system to figure out how to boot up, and the iPad turns off instantly too, what a relief!

It’s biggest downfall — it doesn’t connect to the cellular system, just to wireless, so I had to find a work around.  I want to be able to connect to the internet from anywhere so I went to Verizon and picked up a MyFi wireless hub.  The Verizon network really is one of the best, and with my little MyFi hub I can connect to the Internet, and  even when there’s no other wireless within miles I can check my email, the web, and even make worldwide phone calls using Skype.   I slapped a strip of Velcro on the back of the MyFi and a mating piece on to the back of the iPad and I was ready to go anywhere.

sketchbook_homepageWhile grazing the Apple app store I noticed Autodesk’s Sketchbook Pro for iPad,  a cool looking app that I felt would be of interest to the ShareCG audience.  I plunked down $7.99, instantly got the app,  and even-though I’m not an artist, I couldn’t wait to run it through its paces.

But, before I could get serious I had to invest another twenty bucks for a Pogo Sketch stylus from Ten One Design, which certainly beat using my index finger to draw with.   I then slipped my writing hand into an open finger bike glove so I could rest my palm on the screen while I drew,  and was finally ready to learn the tool and take my non-existent artistic skills to the next level – or just have some fun scribbling.

A picture is worth a thousand words, and a video is worth at least ten times that.  So, I’ll give you a few specs and highlights here, express some of  my impressions,  and then share a video with you that shows how a real artist, like you, creates meaningful work in Sketchbook Pro on iPad.

I learned how to use the majority of Sketchbook’s features in less than thirty-minutes after watching the included slide show tutorial and reading the documentation.  Then after poking around with Sketchbook for another thirty minutes I really understood how to use this tool, even though I can’t really create much yet.  If I want to take it to the next level, i.e. create real art,  I guess I’ll have to take a basic drawing course and then come back to this high-tech canvas.

I’ve listed below some  Sketchbook Pro for iPad features …sketchbook_layers1 I was impressed by all of them, especially the layers!  That’s because I was able to pull a photograph into a layer, create a new layer on top of the photo, draw the subject’s a outline, fill in the outline, and viola, I’m an instant artist!

sketchbook_penselectandcolorwindowI also liked the versatile pen and color selection window (Brush Editor) where I was able to choose from a wide assortment of pen and brush stroke styles, adjust their width, opacity and color, draw perfect rectangles and circles, and even select preloaded objects such as bushes, eyes, a hand and lots of other interesting goodies that make even my work look professional.

Sketchbook Pro’s Notable Features

• Full Screen work space with support for any device orientation

• Canvas size: 1024 x 768

Multi-touch Interface:
• Two finger pan & zoom navigation with 2500% zoom
• Three finger tap for controls
• Three finger swipe gestures for quick access

High quality brushes and tools:
• Professional grade paint engine delivers smooth and precise brush strokes
• 75 preset brushes, including pencils, pens, markers, natural media and photo brushes
• New Nature & Stamp brushes
• Flood fill and smear tool
• Completely customizable brush settings for each brush
• Draw styles for creating straight lines, rectangles, and circles
• Synthetic pressure sensitivity (brush fade-off)
• 10 levels of undo and redo (Quick Access: three finger swipe left and right)
• Dynamic symmetric drawing
• Quick Access: Three finger swipe down on canvas

• 6 Layers allowing ease of editing and control
• Import layers from Photo Library
• Duplicate, Merge and Reorder Layers
• Move, scale, and rotate layers interactively using Multi-Touch
• Toggle visibility and adjust Layer Opacity
• Quick Access: Three finger swipe up on canvas

• Store and view work-in-progress
• Export to Photo Library
• E-mail images
• Export as a layered PSD file
• Browse images in full screen mode

• Color Wheel with HSB and RBG color space
• Customizable Color Swatches
• Eye-dropper color selection
• Erase color chip to convert any brush into custom eraser

The Video

I placed a Sketchbook Pro video  in my ‘jalex417’  ShareCG gallery and posted it in the animation section so you can see how a real artist uses it.  Just click the  screen shot, sit back and be amazed.


Click and Watch

I’m really jazzed by this tool, and if you’ve got an iPad, $7.99 and some artistic talent I’m sure you’ll get more than your money’s worth of creative fun.  In fact, I’ve added a new category in CG Art named ‘Sketchbook Pro/iPad” so you can upload examples of your work.  Once we’ve got a good sampling I’ll showcase your great works of iPad art on the home page for the world to see 🙂

Enjoy your new toy, and allow me, and all our readers, to live vicariously though your experience.

Some Interesting ShareCG Statistics

Saturday, April 3rd, 2010

I was just checking out ShareCG’s statistics today, and here’s the breakdown:


Page Views:  2,300,000
Unique Visitors: 165,000

Free Downloads:

3D Models:  4,800
CG Art:  6,480
Textures:  5,100
Poser: 9,000
And more . . .

Just hover your mouse cursor over each navigation link at the top of the site to see how many downloads are available in each category.

Thank you for helping ShareCG grow to serve all CG enthusiasts  – and, please participate by constructively commenting on their many uploads. 😉


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