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Drawing Tablets

I am looking over the Wacom site for a fairly simple drawing tablet that I can use via usb or wirelessly on my chromebook. I have a pc, but I don’t use it much. Any suggestions? Doesn’t have to Wacom, that’s just what I know to be a good brand. I am especially interested in how it feels to use and to be as close to paper and pencil as possible. Thanks…Rob


I’m sorry I don’t have an answer but I am following to hear what others say. :blush:

I’m not a computer guy for sure but if you want it to “feel” like pencil on paper?
Sounds like that’s the way you usually do it. Why not stick with pencil and paper then scan the image? I believe that it can be manipulated on your computer?

I am a computer guy, but retired from managing academic data networks before I had to learn anything about drawing tablets. I have used paper, pencil and scanning for years, but I am trying to get my grandkids interested in what I do. One of them suggested a drawing tablet might be a good way to do this. Hence my question. Since asking it, I have done a lot of research and talked to people who do currently manage networks where they buy tablets for kids. The Wacom line came up as top of the line. I bought a fairly inexpensive smaller model (CLT 4100) and am having fun learning to use it. I had to be careful and make sure that it would work with Chromebooks and it will. That’s all I know for now, but will share if I learn more…Rob

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Hi Rob
I have a Wacom too. It came bundled with Z Brush software. It takes some getting use to but allows for much better control than a mouse. Isn’t fun teaching an old dog new tricks?

Although it is fairly expensive The Remarkable 2 is just like drawing on paper its fantastic. Also you can hand write words on the screen & convert it into typed text. The stylus is just like a pencil and you can vary the “lead” thickness. Philip


Ooh, nice! I look forward to hearing how it works out for you.

I’ve considered this as well, or getting an Apple Pencil to go with the iPad I already rely heavily on. One of the features of a tablet that appeals to me is the way software can smooth out my wobbly lines- I’ve got pretty advanced arthritis, a mild intermittent tremor, and I just honestly suck at drawing! That little bit of magic can make a huge difference for me. Plus I’m with you on being a computer person. When I was a kid, my dad didn’t buy me video games. He put me on our good old Tandy and let me play with Corel Draw and autoCAD (okay okay we had Galactix, there were some games!), so if I need to draw something my brain immediately pictures a screen and tool menu, not a sketchbook.

The other thing I see as an advantage to drawing digitally is scaling. Especially for jewelry designs, I’m almost always going to draw bigger and then shrink it down to actual finished size, and I often want several copies of the same image in a range of sizes. Might as well make it digital to start with and save the extra work of scanning the paper, cleaning up the scanned image, converting it, etc.

I keep seeing ads for these. Would love to get my hands on one to try out first though, like you said they’re pretty steep.

I like the idea of using an Apple iPad with Affinity software. I bought the Affinity Photo software yesterday and I know they also have a Designer Software… for drawing etc … both are seem pretty powerful… and right now (Black Friday Pricing) not that expensive. Both use a drawing pencil… probably an Apple pencil… but I have an old Wacom Bamboo pencil that I’m going to try with it. Hopefully the Wacom pencil works.

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I’ve used a Huion model G10T for several years and like it. The pen is a good size for my hand and it works anywhere on my Mac mini, not just drawing apps. I, too, do jewelry larger drawings using Affinity Design, and then resize them, and the Huion works great.

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I have been using Gimp for years (open source kind of Photoshop), and bought the Wacom Intuos Pro Medium about two years ago. Then a year ago, I migrated to the Pro Large.
I don’t do jewellery design, just digital paintings, but wouldn’t dream of going back to traditional media (paint, pencil etc). I’ve tried the on-screen drawing type devices, but prefer the flexibility of a separate drawing tablet.

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Can you expand on this difference between on-screen versus separate tablet? What do you feel the advantages/drawbacks are?

I now have one of each and have yet to master either. My Wacom tablet is really just a drawing enhanced mouse that draws an image on the app screen as the pen passes over the tablet surface. I also have an apple pencil that allows me to draw directly on the image on my ipad. So the difference is where the image is created relative to the pen producing it. Neither of my devices has the paper and pencil feel. There are some that are supposed to create this feel, but I have never used one. I would be interested in hearing more about what applications people use, why and if they will work in a chrome environment. Happy Thanksgiving…Rob

Rob, have you looked at these?


  • Wendy

I have not, thank you very much…Rob

On-screen require a dedicated computer or tablet computer (eg iPad, Wacom Cintique etc) which by definition are heavier (often, much heavier). They also have, in varying amounts, a parallax problem; the perceived gap between the tip of the drawing stylus and the altered pixel. This problem doesn’t exist for a drawing tablet, which is like a high-precision mouse in some ways. Note that, unlike a mouse, the drawing stylus allows pressure and angle sensitivity.

I not only love drawing tablets (the Wacom Intuos in my case) but have found that I have absolutely no interest in any real or simulated “paper feel” or texture. I used to use paper, card and film overlays on the tablet for different textures, but in the end found I was just as happy with glass-smooth as I was with fairly fine sandpaper. So, with an independent drawing tablet, you can very cheaply get the exact texture you want.

I have read that some digital artists refurbish the surface of their drawing tablets by sanding and/or polishing them, but being more conservative, I merely taped overlays to them.

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