A couple of months ago I reviewed what I believed (and still believe) to be the best stylus for the iPad (and one stylus that was complete crap). Since settling on a stylus that I was comfortable with I decided to move on and experiment with some of the more popular drawing apps available for the iPad. To be honest, I really dont have a favorite. They are all good in some respects and lacking in others. Therefore, Im going to structure this article as a series of mini reviews, spelling out where each app shines and where each falls short for me.
Contrary to their desktop computer counterparts, which try and cram as many features as possible into an application suite, iPad apps generally have a very limited set of functions and tools. There is no one size fits all solution for editing images on the iPad and so it really comes down to deciding what post-processing you commonly do and what are the best apps to accomplish that. Quite often this involves a few saves to the photo library as you move your image back and forth between multiple iPad image editing apps. As an example, Im going to go through the beginning-to-end post-processing workflow of a portrait I took of my kids a couple weekends ago after they returned from a karate class. The creative part of my mind was thinking things like Rocky, fighter & manager, The Wrestler and that was the theme on which I would base the final image.
I like to take photos. If you weren’t aware of that, take a look at any other article in this blog. Or the domain name. I also like to sketch. It’s something that I’ve been doing ever since i used to sit in the furthest back corner of algebra class drawing rather sick and perverse, yet comical pictures of Mr. Ward. I’m not actually good at sketching, but if we only expressed our inner artist in the ways we knew we would do well, there would be no need for karaoke bars. In fact, it can be said that I am as good at drawing as every single person who I’ve ever heard doing karaoke is at singing.
I’ve been hearing a lot of buzz recently for Adobe’s Photoshop Touch for the iPad. I’ve taken a look at the features and really can’t understand where the buzz is coming from. It’s an okay app and the UI is solid but it doesn’t bring anything new or different to the table. It’s not the first with layers and, due to physical limitations defined by iOS, using layers severely compromises image resolution. Is it just because photographers like to name-drop recognized brand names?
I’m here to introduce an app with tools that are actually useful to the mobile professional and has been evolving over the past couple of years to meet their needs: Photogene. Specifically, I will be referring to the “Pro features” version of the app, available via in-app purchase for eight bucks.
Remember last week I wanted to pass off a copy of Easy Release to you guys? Well, there were 5 entrants…
And the generator at Random.org spit out…
How would you like a FREE copy of Easy Release for your iPod Touch, iPhone, or iPad? I want to give you one. Seriously, I do. And all it takes is a comment for you to win.
I’m going to start with a preemptive “No, not because the iPad 2 has a camera.” because, let’s face it, the camera in the iPad is crap. You’re better off using the camera in your phone in a pinch if just for awkward hold-ability reasons. And I guess I should also clearly state that it’s not because the screen is better. The iPad 2 retains the same 720p resolution display with ‘magical’ oliophobic coating that ‘magically’ exaggerates finger marks. Now that that’s out of the way, let’s begin at the beginning.