Adventures in Digital Art
Back in the early fall of 2015, I was debating whether or not to take the plunge and get a Wacom Cintiq for creating digital artwork. I had used my Intuos for the past five years and it had worked fine. I had tested out the Cintiq back in college, and I thought it was nice, but not worth the hefty price tag, especially since I mostly worked traditionally. Besides, I never had a problem with not being able to draw directly on the screen. However, once I got my desktop computer, I began to have issues with neck and upper back pain when using the Intuos for more than an hour. I watched reviews on comparing the tablets with the Cintiqs, and finally decided to convince myself that I could make great artwork digitally without a Cintiq. So I decided to draw a picture of my favorite soccer player, German midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger, in the previous year's World Cup final. It was my first attempt doing realism digitally, and I was able to sketch it out and paint it with my Intuos tablet well enough until the neck pain set in. I ended up convincing myself that it would be easier and faster to draw accurately on a Cintiq, plus it would allow me to draw in a more natural position, eliminating back and neck pain. So I shelved the bloody-faced Basti project and purchased the cheapest Cintiq I could find, the 13HD.
I loved working on the Cintiq immediately, and used it for all my digital sketching until earlier this summer when it suddenly stopped working. I discovered the power cord was broken and needed to be replaced (a common problem with the 13HDs.) As I waited for a new power cord to ship from Wacom, I showed a friend of mine the unfinished Schweinsteiger project I had started with my Intuos nearly two years before. She convinced me to finish it so I did, using my trusty old Intuos. I realized the Cintiq had spoiled me, and drawing with the Intuos seemed cumbersome. But I quickly got over it and used that disconnect to my advantage, since it forces you to be looser and more painterly. I liked how it turned out, and it convinced me to try to do more realistic studies to get better at painting digitally once I got my Cintiq up and running again.