USING A TABLET IN YOUR WORKFLOW

WACOM TABLET

Do you use a Wacom tablet? Last year in September I picked up one of the Intuos small tablets based on suggestions from many digital artists, photographers & retouchers like Genia Larionova. I was a little unsure of its usefulness as I had never used one and had always used a mouse for all of my edits.

ORDERED IT

When I finally decided to take the plunge, I ordered it online.¬†After placing my order I eagerly waited the several days for it’s arrival. I was excited to try it out and hopefully boost my editing technique with it. As with any other gadget that I’ve ordered, when it arrived, I quickly opened up the box, installed all the hardware and software and started to play with it.

FIRST REACTION

Well, let me first be honest about my initial reaction to using it. *This sucks!!!* and is so hard to use. I fiddled with the settings as best I could for sensitivity and what the buttons all do. Still, it was really hard to use. After using a mouse for almost 20 years the pen, which to paper is so natural now, was a pain the butt.

PERSISTENCE

So I dabbled with it here and there for the first week not working on anything super important as I didn’t have the feel for it just yet. After about a week or so, I decided that, after reading a lot of opinions on it use, that I’d put the mouse away for a week and struggle only using the tablet; *For everything!*

I used it from photo editing, browsing the web and checking email and even work and excel documents. The first couple days was a nightmare. Now, if you own or have checked out the Intuos, it comes with several different pen tips, or nibs, as they call them. I found one that seemed a bit easier to use and felt more natural.

Just a couple days before the week was up I started to get the hang of it and could see why so many professionals use and rely upon it.

7 MONTHS LATER

Well 7 months into using it I can safely say it’s so awesome! The ability to adjust pressure on the fly when using a brush in Photoshop is so fantastic.This past week I was working on a photo to prep it for working in Photoshop and I didn’t have the tablet with me at the time. I got to the point of using Photoshop and was stopped in my tracks. I’ve now myself become reliant on the use of the tablet. The mouse is not natural anymore for using the tools in my work. The pressure sensitivity and other great features of the tablet have proven to be such useful tools. I use the pressure all the time to do different amounts of opacity when brushing with a clone stamp tool or standard brush. You *can’t* do that with a mouse.

IN CONCLUSION

So, to finish up with my experience with the tablet so far I can’t stress how much this has helped in editing photos. Are you on the fence about whether to pick one up? Do you have one that either you bought for yourself or someone gave you? Is it still sitting in it’s box waiting for you to have the *time* to set it up and learn it?

Well, let me tell you go for it! If you have one already and haven’t used it yet then your kicking yourself in the heels. If you haven’t purchased on and have thought of it then it’s a must.

No joke, there is a bit a of a learning curve, but if you give it a little persistence then I promise you’ll be amazed at how much better your editing will become. I still use a mouse for most things not related to editing photos like email, text document and browsing the web, but for photo editing or digital painting, there is no other way to go. I just can’t believe it’s taken me so long to get to this point.

Don’t wait as long as I did!

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