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Wacom Tablet working position

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Hi everyone,
My first post here, with a question for the digital artists with a lot of hours on the tablet:
As I transition to spending much more time working with the Wacom Tablet, I am not finding a really comfortable way to work. Currently I work with a medium tablet on a small stand that sits just below the height of the slide out keyboard. Handy because I can use the keyboard easily when needed, but I am getting some back and other pains. I know I don't move around nearly as much as I do when I work traditionally and this is no doubt part of the problem, but I am not feeling that great about the overall set up.
Does anyone have suggestions or a really great working set up they would share? Do you work with the tablet flat or on an inclined angle?

Thanks,
Steve


#1 - December 02, 2010, 11:58 AM
« Last Edit: December 02, 2010, 12:09 PM by Steve Feldman »

df

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Hi Steve,

I have to work with the tablet in my lap. Not an ideal set-up, but I'm pain-free that way. Of course, our issues may be different!

Debbie
#2 - December 02, 2010, 05:42 PM

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I'm probably completely at odds here. I use the tablet with my non-dominant hand and the mouse instead of the stylus. It's flat and on the same desktop as my monitor. I also get up and walk around every 20 minutes so my back doesn't seize up. I can't use the stylus because of tendinitis in my thumbs. Makes holding things like pens and styluses very painful -- especially if I have to manipulate the little buttons on the stylus!
#3 - December 02, 2010, 10:31 PM
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Thanks for the replies Debbie and Wendy,

I think for me working in my lap would have me more hunched over than I currently work, and probably more pained. Interesting working procedure Wendy. Getting up every 20 minutes sounds like the best easy idea for me to start with.

Steve
#4 - December 03, 2010, 06:00 PM

Karl_Diaz

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Steve,

I work with both a Wacom Tablet and a Cintiq and both are at an incline and on a swivel(I draw at a 45 degree angle), the best thing you can do is to set it up like you are working on a sketch pad at a drawing/drafting desk. This may require you to build a wedge to put on your desk. However you can do lots of things and it may not help if your current work space isn't set up ergonomically. Think about how you feel if you are just setting at that desk to draw, PC desk aren't really made for drawing, it's like trying to draw at the kitchen table for 2 hours, it will take a toll. The best thing to do is  buy a monitor stand/mount and attach it to a drawing desk, and a keyboard and mouse rest/tray and attach that as well. Then it's just a matter of getting a comfortable stool/chair. Here are some sample but they are a bit pricey, you can get the idea and maybe make your own with what you've got.

http://www.ergoindemand.com/computer-mounts-lcd-mounts.htm

http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_SPM1748016501P?prdNo=4

http://www.draftingtables.com/drafting-tables/cpu-compatible-tables/draftingtablewithdrawers.cfm

Hope this helps. 
#5 - December 04, 2010, 04:40 PM

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Thanks for the links and the details on your work set up Karl.
I am going to try some modifications to my dedicated Wacom stand/table for greater comfort and to more closely resemble the way I work at my drawing table. Nice idea of having it all on a swivel.

Steve
#6 - December 06, 2010, 02:10 PM

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Wow Steve . . . Your work is amazing!

Nice suggestions on the positioning of your Wacom Tablet. I have a desk with one of those pull out trays for the keyboard . . . My Wacom was wired through the desk initially and the cord lenth prohibited movement down to the keyboard level. I'm going to try it now that my desk has been moved though . . . seems like it would be much more comfortable. Of course we can always drool and hope for this miracle gift : http://www.wacom.com/cintiq/cintiq-21ux.php  I met an artist who has one and absolutely loves it. She has an older version and from what I gather, Wacom is making them a little more lightweight these days. I like the fact that the work isn't detached from your hand as with the monitor and your positioning is much easier. Maybe the technology will become more reasonably priced in a few years. That's my best hope.


#7 - December 07, 2010, 07:21 AM
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Thanks Cynthia,
Yes, that Cintiq looks pretty nice. When I looked into it a few years ago the Cintiq set up was much more complicated than the Wacom intuos tablets. I really love being able to just plug into a usb port and go. Sour grapes?, well the wacom intuos tablets price is much more appealing.

Steve
#8 - December 08, 2010, 01:50 PM

ladylind

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Wow Cynthia!  The Cintiq is incredible.  Just the video makes me drool.

As you know I've got the Wacom bug.  Does anyone have suggestions about what to buy?  Or what not to buy? 
#9 - January 19, 2011, 09:24 AM

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Melissa, I use the Wacom Intuos4 medium tablet and really like it. For me it didn't take long at all to be comfortable drawing on the tablet while looking at the screen. The price is reasonable and I like that the only set-up is plugging into a usb port. For me the medium was the perfect choice in size.
#10 - January 19, 2011, 11:56 AM

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I have the Intuos3 and it certainly does the job. I'm a big fan of working with a stylus versus trying to draw with a potato of a mouse. The only thing about mine, I wish the pad was a larger size for those sweeping movements . . . not having to pick up my wrist and move to the left to realign. In the future, I plan on upgrading . . . distant future at this time. Using the Wacom has me spoiled. In the move, my husband lost my stylus . . . we may as well have upgraded for the cost to replace the stylus, but it was still cheaper to replace it so I'm sticking with the 3. The stylus was found, but it had been exposed to snow and freezing temps as it fell out of the box it was packed in.  :drowning: Poor thing didn't fare well.
#11 - January 19, 2011, 03:18 PM
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ladylind

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I've been eying the bamboo tablet at Sam's Club, only $100.  Very reasonable.  Does anyone have experience with those?  Are they significantly less awesome than the Intuos?

I looked it up on Wacom's site and it's distinction is home/office rather than for Creative Professionals.  But what does that mean?

When it comes right down to it, do I get the Bamboo for my birthday this year or the Intuos for my birthday next year?
#12 - January 20, 2011, 07:39 AM

ladylind

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Hot diggity dog!  I just got some unexpected cash...so I can get it tomorrow.  SO.....which one.  Tell it to me straight, is the Intuos twice as good as the bamboo?
#13 - January 20, 2011, 01:36 PM

ladylind

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I did some more research and found this thread about the intuos vs. the bamboo.

http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=484074

The comparison was that bamboo is like using a crayon and the intuos is like using a pen.  And like Cynthia told me, a mouse is like a potato.  So I'm going from a potato to the pen, it's decided.

Thanks for the info!
#14 - January 21, 2011, 07:28 AM

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Congratulations on your Wacom!!! It's a creation celebration! Have fun!
#15 - January 22, 2011, 09:19 AM
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ladylind

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I am SOLD SOLD SOLD.  Wow, what fun.  Not just for the drawing stuff, but for just navigating my computer.  I'm flinging things this way and that, it really feels very natural and my index finger is SO grateful.  All that stress is now equally shared by my other fingers.  Ahhhhh.   Thank you for innovation!
#16 - January 27, 2011, 06:38 PM

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