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BluBone
02-04-2004, 01:51 PM
Hi guys,

I'm trying to get to grips with my Wacom and I'd like to ask a couple of questions... I'm not asking for tuts, as I'm guessing that experience will be the best way anyhow. But there are a couple of things that I guess dont feel right... like:

Did/do any of you feel that that the wacom surface is just too smooth and the pen goes skitting off without control?

I have an A6 size tablet, but is control related to the size of the tablet? So would an A5 or A4 be better?

Painter or Photoshop? I am currently using PS (always have, especially need layers), but I have read a couple of things that mention painter may be better specifically for tablet use... And so layer use may be out of the window. Is it better to use smudge (etc.) and just paint on one layer anyway?

Any tips that might help would be really appreciated. I looked around the forums for things on this line specifically in the teqniques section, but there doesn't seem to be a forum for this type of question, so I figured I'd ask here.

Thanks,
Aaron

toxin
02-04-2004, 10:26 PM
Hi, I had /have the same problem with the pen skidding off - I learnt to 'relax' the way I hold the pen on the tablet surface to compensate, sort of softening the lateral pressure compared to pencil on paper etc. Still get annoyed sometimes, but I tend to duplicate a layer and work on that just incase ;)

I don't think control is related to tablet size as such, from reading around trhe subject it's more personal preference. I have an A4 tablet and occasionally wish it was a smaller one, but you get used to the tools you have I guess.

Software wise, again I suppose it's a personal choice, I am used to PS so use that the most, Painter Classic came bundled with my tablet but I've only dabbled with it and ended up going back to what I know.. I would imagine a lot depends on what you are creating and your own 'style'. I personally like pressure sensitivity for the 'dodge & burn' tools and really like the improvement I got over a mouse :thumbsup:

bumskee
02-04-2004, 10:48 PM
hey Aaron,

I think I did think about the smoothness of the tablet surface, but now I can hardly notice it. If it's causing you that much concern, try placing a piece of paper on top of the surface, so you get some friction. mind you though it does wear out the tip fast.

As for the size, A6 is a good size, stay on it. Are you on a pen mode or mouse mode? just wondering what people use, I am on pen mode. mouse mode didn't work for me. I have A6 at work and 12x12 at home, I don't see much difference in them. 12x12 (slightly wider than A4) is huge in size, takes up heaps of space.

Painter or PS?? if you are comfortable with PS stick with it for now. Once you get the feel for wacom and painting decently in PS you may want to move onto painter. But the basic idea for painting is identical in both applications. Painters do have layers.
you must be talking about painter classic.

there is few threads here in this section about painting techniques, or what people have suggested. SO go and have a read at some of those should be quite recent and in this photoshop section.

good luck!!!!

min

BluBone
02-04-2004, 11:53 PM
Hi bumskee,

Thanks for replying. I tried the piece of paper idea, but came to the same conclusion you did - that it would wear the tip out far too soon...

I have been using mouse mode. This is because I dont like the tablet deciding where the pointer should be using absolute placement (I think it is called that). But I am willing to give things a try, so I might swap over. I guess that would be the thing that could differentiate between the larger and smaller tablets.

Yeah I meant painter classic, the painting is smoother than in PS (as mentioned somewhere else in the forum), but it feels pretty unorthodox interface-wise.

I'll have a further look around the forums to see if I can spot those threads you mentioned as well - thanks for the heads up.

Cheers!

Aaron

bumskee
02-05-2004, 01:23 AM
painter classic is very limited in many ways, but then again, if you just wanna paint away it's a good starting point and it's probably a better option if you are just starting it out. PS requires lot more practice. I think it's because with painter your brush sort of blends naturally with it surroundings so even with hard edge it seems a lot more natural. PS is just hard edged unless you go for soft and then it's more like air brushing. (so everything looks crap.) you can check my first digital painting out..in one of those threads here, it's shocking so be prepared, just to point out that it was really hard for me to get started.......:rolleyes:


might wanna try painter 8. it's lot more advanced (?) download a trial and try them out. They have more brushed and layers and stuff.

good luck~~~~

BluBone
02-05-2004, 08:07 AM
I think I'll try out painter 8 as well, it might be ore useful to get into the actual motion/swing/whatever of painting.

@ toxin, I agree - I usually hold my pencil really tight even when I am making light strokes. So probably I need to figure a way to hold the stylus more relaxed. This might help a lot. :)

With regards to holding the pen softer, do you guys have the sensitivity more towards soft or hard?

Thx

XLNT-3d
02-05-2004, 10:54 PM
I have mine at 3/4 firm. Think of it as a brush and not a pen. A brush has a little looser grip. I also set my tilt angle a little more than 3/4 towards Maximum. This way I am not limited by the angle. I hate the mouse because of all the hand travel. The same can hold true to the tablet. You grip it too hard and have a tight tilt angle, you end up moving you hand everywhere. I also set mine up so that each corner of the tablet matches each corner of the screen. I customized mine to work with Max also. When you rotate or pan, the tip doesn't even touch the pad. It's cool that you can give custom settings for each of the software packages you use.

think like a painter, loose grip on the brush and let it flow. Your workflow will become faster. My co-worker also has one and barely uses it, but for Photoshop. It is all I use. The mouse it came with is my paperweight.

bumskee
02-05-2004, 11:04 PM
mine is pratically on default, just about in the middle and use pen mode. I don't have a mouse though. my 6x8 was platnium version and it didn't include one and 12x12 doesn't come with it.

BluBone
02-05-2004, 11:39 PM
Agreed about the mouse. Pretty useless with such a small area to work from...

I have a graphire 2 (I think), so it doesn't support tilt angle. :( I figure that if I can get into using the stylus then I will eventually go to a better model, but there's no point getting a more expensive tablet just yet.

I'll have to experiment with the limited screen position thingy, cuz I find the pen wandering over the menus a real aggravation...

Thanks

BluBone
02-06-2004, 01:01 AM
Just wanted to say that the screen limitsetting really helps ALOT! here's what I came up with...

bumskee
02-06-2004, 09:08 AM
heheh, not bad but could be better.
did you try do the exercise in the wacom manual??
the circle and the cross exercise???
I did few of those at first. not sure if it's any help though.

have fun!!!

dotbomb
02-06-2004, 08:22 PM
My problem with the wacom tablet comes from having a dual monitor setup. Unless I disable one of the monitors, it stretches the input according to the combined screen ratio. Obviously this only happens in "pen mode".

Has anyone else encountered this? Am I overlooking a setting or update that compensates for this?

just curious

XLNT-3d
02-06-2004, 09:24 PM
I do not have a problem with my dual monitors. My tablet follows me around because we can't drop $450 for every workstation. Our edit station has two monitors and it seems that only a portion of the tablet, the same ratio as the dual monitors, is used. However, on my home workstation, it works fine with dual monitors. Corner to corner on the tablet is corner to corner on the screen. I'll check my settings and let you know.

dotbomb
02-06-2004, 10:34 PM
Originally posted by XLNT 3d
I do not have a problem with my dual monitors. My tablet follows me around because we can't drop $450 for every workstation. Our edit station has two monitors and it seems that only a portion of the tablet, the same ratio as the dual monitors, is used. However, on my home workstation, it works fine with dual monitors. Corner to corner on the tablet is corner to corner on the screen. I'll check my settings and let you know.

Maybe it's because I have the really small one. It does go corner to corner, but it doesn't account for the aspect ratio. So if I move up and down it is fine, but it doubles my side to side movement. For instance, if I physically draw a perfect square on the pad it will result in a 1x2 rectangle on the screen.

It just doesn't seem natural for drawing. Do the higher level tablets handle this differently. Mine is a wacom, but it's the smallest one they make, I think.

dotbomb
02-06-2004, 11:08 PM
Originally posted by dotbomb
Maybe it's because I have the really small one. It does go corner to corner, but it doesn't account for the aspect ratio. So if I move up and down it is fine, but it doubles my side to side movement. For instance, if I physically draw a perfect square on the pad it will result in a 1x2 rectangle on the screen.

It just doesn't seem natural for drawing. Do the higher level tablets handle this differently. Mine is a wacom, but it's the smallest one they make, I think.

Here's a new and exciting idea...I called Wacom and they said all of thier tablets support changing aspect ratios, I just have to find the calibration setting in the config program.

I'll stop clogging up this poor guy's post with my somewhat off-topic rambling. Sorry.

BluBone
02-07-2004, 10:25 AM
dotbomb... dont worry about the OT, it is regarding wacom tablets after all... and I'm pretty much on my way now. (The thing I guess now would be for me to practice. :) )

Are you using PC or Mac? OSX has various options in the tablet preferences and a few of them relate to aspect ratios, and screen adjustments...

dotbomb
02-07-2004, 06:19 PM
Thanks BluBone.

I alternate between Windows XP and Linux. I messed with the settings last night and found the one that worked. It just wasn't where I expected it to be.

In pen mode, I selected "Entire Tablet" under the "Tablet Area" options and "monitor 1" under the "Display Area" options. This makes it so that the mouse works normally across both monitors, but the pen covers only monitor 1. (bottom right of the tablet is bottom right of monitor 1) This works well for me because I don't normally stretch a single image across the monitors and it allows me to use my whole 4x5 tablet area and keep a consistent aspect ratio.

Isn't it odd sometimes that just asking the question can lead you to the answer?

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