Reconnecting With Your Process.
Have you ever thought about how you interact with your computer? As a photographer I’m sure you have because we spend insane and massive amounts of time on our images and businesses. Mostly at the desktop workstation or on the go on a laptop. I know you’re familiar with this routine of mouse, keyboard, trackpad, mouse, keyboard, trackpad. It’s repetitive. It’s dry. And even though its better than a rock and chisel it makes for a stale workflow. There is a more organic way to workflow though, and that’s with Wacom Tablets. (This is the part that I tell you that this article is NOT affiliated financially with the brand Wacom, and that I am only so passionate about spreading the work to help YOU! Our awesome readers!)
Wacom is pronounced “wah come” and is derived from the Japanese symbol for harmony (“wah”) and the first syllable of computer (“come”). The tag line of the company is, “Toward the harmonious development between man and technology.”
A Wacom tablet is an amazing product of innovation and technology. What it does is connects your hand, eye, and mind to your computer. No no, its not a portal to the matrix or a USB for your brain. It’s a pressure sensitive input surface, much like a giant trackpad, EXCEPT… You control the cursor with a special pen. Wait, you draw INTO your computer? You might ask. Yes! If you have ever drawn on paper, painted, or worked in a black and white darkroom dodging and burning, you know that the motion of our hands and the rhythm of our process is where the magic lives. So it’s very important to somehow bring that experience into your everyday computer based workflow. Wacom has done exactly that so please stick around for an explanation of these awesome devices and how they can change your photo life + tips on how you can potentially utilize your new Wacom!
Wah – Come. A Beautiful Thing.
Working with a responsive tablet and pen combination that allows one to have an infinitely more control over applying digital paint. Setting one up properly and getting used to its ins and outs can be difficult. The learning curve is steep but making the switch can significantly improve your photo life. And not only that but it can also spark a new passion in you! I wasn’t into retouching for the longest time. It was weird, I wasn’t that good, and it hurt my hand. Now I’ve never felt like more of a digital artist. Simply because of my workstations input method and the way it makes me interact with the machine. I’ll never go back!
A New Experience. Digital Art.
I promised I’d tell you why this all matters. So here is the truth. The way that you interact and interface with your photography has a big influence on how your work evolves. If you hate your day to day computer life its likely that your work will suffer somewhat. We don’t want that to happen to you. We want you to flourish like the amazing image creator that you are. That brings its own challenges with it, like embracing new technology and being willing to learn new things. All worth every minute spent learning though because the reward doesn’t stop giving.
The benefits of using a Wacom tablet are ten fold at a time. The well designed objects not only allow for organic and free flow input they also help you work smarter. All of the buttons are programmable through a piece of Wacom software free for download online HERE. Some of our favorite Wacom features are the tablets and pens Expresskeys, pressure sensitivity, radial mensu, and all around ease of use! Check out the resources at the end of the post to see some more Wacom features to get you familiar with their use!
Wacom Facts / Resources:
Fact: A tablet can greatly increase your enjoyability and sanity as a photographer
Resource: How Wacom Tablets Work
Fact: One can take advantage of Pressure Sensitivity when using a tablet and pen. This makes applying paint in photoshop much more intuitive and tactile.
Fact: Your pen has buttons that can be customized to any keystroke, click, modifier, or shortcut (My pen has a button set to “Undo” (86 the CMND+Z thing in Photoshop where I use it most, the other is set to CMND + OPTION key combo which when combined with touching the pen to the table makes brush size and opacity controllable by moving your pen up / down or left / right on the tablet)
Fact: Once you make the jump to Wacom you can geek out with us about how awesome it is!
Resource: Where to buy Wacom tablets AMAZON
Fact: You might get hooked so its best just splurge on your first good tablet, the intuos pro 5 series is great and a small tablet is enough for most photography applications.
Thanks for sticking with us and we hope that we’ve inspired you to rethink your process and go after something new!
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Thanks and take care!