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Writing, Illustrating & Publishing => Illustrating => Topic started by: Tadghthepom on February 11, 2014, 04:56 AM

Title: Calling all you digital people!
Post by: Tadghthepom on February 11, 2014, 04:56 AM
Hi there,

I had a quick question for anyone who works digitally. At the minute I'm drawing using pen and ink, then taking a Hi-res photo of the drawing and importing it into photoshop to remove the white of the paper leaving the line. Colour and texture is then added digitally.

My question is about scanners. For anyone who works traditionally then touches up digitally, how do you get your original into the computer? I'm wondering whether it is worth buying a scanner or whether, as I'm only really interested in capturing the line, a photo will do.

Also, has anyone had any experience of Wacom's Cintiq tablets (the ones with a screen)? I'm considering taking the plunge but they are so incredibly expensive, I don't want to pay a huge amount of money for something that wouldn't add a lot to the stuff that I'm doing.

Thanks for any advice,

Title: Re: Calling all you digital people!
Post by: Wendy Martin on February 11, 2014, 05:12 AM
I couldn't live without my scanner. I've seen a Cintiq, but in all honesty can't justify the expense for myself. I use a small Wacom tablet and stylus.
Title: Re: Calling all you digital people!
Post by: nilaffle on February 11, 2014, 06:06 AM
For me, a scanner is essential. I've used them for years for scanning in line art and coloring digitally.

I would NOT suggest buying a Cintiq right off the bat. Try a tablet first - much cheaper. I use the Wacom Intuos 5 and I love it. It's a learning curve, though - it took me a while to get used to drawing with a tablet. And yet, the Cintiq is a completely different experience. After using one for a few months, I had to relearn drawing with a tablet ;) but still, it's a pretty expensive piece of hardware if you're not used to drawing with a stylus.
Title: Re: Calling all you digital people!
Post by: Tadghthepom on February 11, 2014, 06:23 AM
Thanks for your responses nilaffle & Wendy! Any recommendations on a scanner? I'm guessing higher DPI is good, and it would be quite nice to have one with a lager bed for larger drawings.
As for the tablet, I've been drawing with a tablet for years now, but it's getting rather stuttery. [size=78%]I just can't decide whether upgrading to a cintiq would be worth the huge outlay![/size]
[/size][size=78%]Thanks again,[/size]
Title: Re: Calling all you digital people!
Post by: nilaffle on February 11, 2014, 07:43 AM

I have an HP that's lasted me for years and through several moves. My current one is pretty small, but the 11x17 scanners are great.

Oh, in that case! The Cintiq is a pretty amazing investment, so I do think it's worth it if you do a considerable amount of digital drawing and painting - otherwise a tablet might be all you need. Lately some Cintiq alternatives have been popping up, like the Yiynova, which might be worth looking into. I haven't tried it so I can't vouch for it, but here's a review from one artist I know:

Hope this helps a little!
Title: Re: Calling all you digital people!
Post by: Cynthia Kremsner on February 11, 2014, 09:05 AM
I'm not a digital artist altogether. I work traditionally for the most part. However, I scan my drawings and print them on watercolor paper (refurbished pro-grade printer). After I paint, I scan and do a bit of digital work/clean up.

My scanner is a refurbished Epson Expression 10,000 XL GA and it does a good job.
Title: Re: Calling all you digital people!
Post by: Tadghthepom on February 11, 2014, 12:49 PM
Thanks again for the suggestions everyone, particularly the Yiynova nilaffle, that thing looks great and less than half the price of the cintiq I was looking at!
Thanks again,
Title: Re: Calling all you digital people!
Post by: DW on February 11, 2014, 02:35 PM

I recently transitioned from my intuos tablet to a cintiq companion and it's a pretty amazing device. Having worked on tablets for years, going from sketch to finish, I had my reservations about the cost, but the transition was actually quite easy. Far easier and more natural than trying to go from drawing traditionally to a tablet, took about a week to get comfortable with the machine. Now I pretty much only work on the cintiq. They are definitely an investment.

Title: Re: Calling all you digital people!
Post by: amandaerbillust on February 12, 2014, 06:03 AM
I miss drawing on a Cintiq so much!  :sigh  they are so terribly expensive. Yiynova is definitely a cheaper alternative that I've heard good things about. Also, Monoprice has a favorably reviewed Cintiq alternative as well ( too bad they won't be available for a little bit.  Ray Frenden ( does a lot of digital drawing hardware reviews for products-especially Cintiq alternatives.

Definitely Scanner over taking a photo for digital lines. I've used an inexpensive scanner/printer combo from Staples whenever I scan in any of my work. My college used Epson scanners and those worked well most of the time. They can get expensive though-but definitely worth it if you draw traditionally and scan in to color digitally a lot.
Title: Re: Calling all you digital people!
Post by: Heather Hatch on February 12, 2014, 06:34 AM
My take on this is slant wise from the standard. It does depend on your style. Mine is painterly, not so much line dependent, except as a guide...I have the typical scanner and set up, (and nowadays, any good scanner will do) and I have both Wacom tablets and Cintique.

I have just finished two jobs for an app company, where I didn't scan in a singles vetch, and loved the simplicity of it. This is what will be part of my process in the future:
I sketch traditionally, on paper. I use my Ipad to take pictures of it, just under good lighting but nothing special. I email or Dropbox those to Painter or Photoshop, or even Procreate on the ipad at high resolution. Use the sketch as a layer with low opacity.  And go from there. Much faster and immediate for me than messing with the scanner, and I can do it anywhere.

As for the Cintique, it turns out they aren't for everybody. I thought it would revolutionize my workflow, but instead I can't stand the color shift and the slight shift of the pen nib. So off to ebay it goes. I do love, love the little intuos tablets, though. Bigger sizes aren't needed, and if you haven't used one, an intuos 3 or 4 is going to be just as amazing as the current model, and a cheaper entry point. You can always trade up. I really love the Intuos 4 line, I bought older on purpose after studying a lot of pro reviews.  Works fabulous for me.