Sunday, May 15, 2011

Wacom Bamboo Fun pen and touch tablet

I got a new tech toy recently - it's the Wacom Bamboo fun pen and touch tablet. It's primary function is to serve as an pen and touch input, not unlike a touch screen phone. I've been delaying the purchase for a few months, trying to decipher within myself if this is an impulsive buy or something that I really wanted to have. The cost of this is not exactly cheap (retailing at 329 SGD), and with that cost, I could have gotten one of those wifi enabled tablets or even an ipod touch. But I guess I really wanted this.

The trigger for the purchase came ironically because of ipad2. I was playing around with an app, called zen touch and was immediately impressed by it. I was having so much fun that my wife had to pull me away from the apple store. If I really got an ipad2 there and then, it would have been because I wanted to explore more on the zen touch app. So this lead to that, and I found a pre-owned Bamboo tablet selling for 250 SGD and I grabbed the opportunity. I guess I never looked back since.

I cropped away the edges...okay, I admit, it was a bullshit job. I'm quite inept at photoshoping or gimping. Yet.

It was such a pleasure drawing and painting and sketching and experimenting. There are a few things about drawing digitally that is so vastly different from drawing physically:

1. There is no lack of paints or paper or the right kind of equipment. With a proper software (included in the package), you can form amazing rendition of any sort of painting. You are only restricted by your imagination and skills, not by lack of equipment or constrained by cost. I think in the past, where I'm too pai seh to ask my parents for yet another box of coloured pencils, had doomed me to sketch with just a single 2B pencil. As a result, I'm much more inclined to do monochromatic sketches rather than using the full spectrum of colours that are available.

2. I can undo multiple times digitally, but I can't do that physically. Undo is such a godsend! I can experiment with different techniques without risk of spoiling the overall picture. When drawing physically, there's always the risk of erasing more than I can handle. It's even worse when painting, because the botch-up might not be always recoverable and it'll definitely leave a mark. Not with the magic 'undo' button.

3. The ability to draw on layers is a concept that is pretty new to me. On paper, everything from the form sketches to the colours to the shades of colours are done on a single layer. Digitally, you can break out a project into multiple layers overlaid on each other, so that you can do edition on one layers independently without affecting the others. It makes a other 2D project three dimensional, so to speak.

I'm like a child magically teleported inside a candy store - suddenly I've so many tools to play with and I don't know what to start with. As a result of this endless permutation of tools to play with, I'm addicted to doing some art project daily. Sometimes I just have to wean myself off the screen and take a break, because staring at the screen for extended periods always tire my eyes (another good reason why for serious readers, you should get a kindle instead of the more popular ipad - it's that different).

Here's some of the projects I've done. I've conveniently removed the more amateurish attempts when I first tried playing with the bamboo. I censored the clumsier attempts all for your viewing pleasure of course, not for my ego, haha :)

Wholly inspired by SMOL's latest post, of course

If you don't know who this this, don't ask

This is still work-in-progress...been 3 days already. One of my longest project on Bamboo


I've finally completed this after 3 days. The hard work is well worth it because I know the tool so much better than just a few days ago. I'm ready for more challenging projects :)

There is a story behind the picture. It'll set the mood and the feelings for this project:

Urthadar of Clan Hunting Wolf stands alone, in the wretched rain. The storm clouds darken much of the sky, as if foretelling his dire circumstances now. He alone will guard this only bridge to his homeland, if none others would volunteer. No, they have a much more important task at hand - to warn the others of the coming of the impending Plague that comes from the north. The ominous sound of a horn is heard, and is rapidly followed by many others, forming a cacophony that heralds the coming of the cursed orcs. Calling upon Tempus, his god of war, he gripped the handle of his battleaxe with renewed determination and roared defiantly.


Chong Jun said...

Hey LP,

now we all know your hidden talent. haha! nice work(s)!


la papillion said...

Hey CJ,

Haha, thanks :) Maybe I shld set up a new blog instead of posting it here :)

Ee Chuan said...
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Ee Chuan said...

Excellent! :-)

Singapore Man of Leisure said...
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Singapore Man of Leisure said...

Hello LP,

I was in the Art Club during my secondary school days.

I am into sculpture and abstract art.

You are drawing out all my forgotten interests!

Thanks for the facebook invite. Eh..... Your cat pic looks very scary. A cross between pet cemetery and blinky the clown?

OT83 said...

HI Lp,

You can draw really well. Can consider to be a full time artist too :)

Anonymous said...

Talented! Keep the drawings coming when you have the time, especially with the caricature. *thumbs up* You may become a popular and well known caricaturist in your next stage of life's journey. Glad to have stumbled upon your blog back then

p.s. how about the little pig with the stone house by SMOL?


la papillion said...


Me too, I was in art club since primary school through the entire secondary school. I was into chinese calligraphy though, haha :)

Haha, the cat pic is known as the Joker cat :)

Hi OT,

Thanks for your compliment! I don't think I'll ever be a full time artist. I do not know how to earn a living as one :) I don't mind teaching kids handicrafts though, haha

Hi HK,

Thanks for your encouragement! The little pig is drawn for SMOL's story. You can look at his blog for his take on the classical three little pigs and the big bad wolf :)

Anonymous said...

Hi LP,

Really nice drawing, post more of your artworks, looking forward to it :)

la papillion said...

Hi slowly but surely,

Sure, I'll slowly post up more ;) Thanks for your compliments!

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