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Right now drawing and scanning in images is working okay, but it just takes so long to scan and quite frankly, I'm lazy and want something that doesn't involve getting up.
I'm curious to hear your opinions.
I've got a small one, only 8 X 9, wish I had a larger one because the drawing area is a bit cramped. Although I love it, it's nowhere near as fun to use in Photoshop as it is in Flash. Seems a lot harder to control and I have to keep zooming in the make corrections. I do most of my hand-drawing in Flash for that reason.
If you have the desk space, get a larger one. They have a translucent cover you can slip drawings under for tracing. :-)
Are there any other competitors out there for this?
I am beginning to get into freelance graphic arts and would like to know how accurate they are with freeform drawings, basically wireframing and cartooning. I'm curious about the pressure and if they're worth the money.
If they don't work well with Photoshop, I don't know what I'll do. I don't mind Flash, but one day, I would like to remove it altogether from my machine. Call me old-fashioned, but I'm in favor of as little third-party internet applications needed as possible. If I had my way it'd be browser(w/scripting) and that's it. An anti-virus in the background and a media player integrated with the browser.
I don't like having to rely on third party vendors to be able to view something online.
Okay, enough with the ranting, thank you all for your help, you've givin me a great place to start. Has anyone had the chance to test the differences in the versions. For instance the Bamboo vs. Graphire vs. Intuos.
Flash is vectored art, Photoshop is bitmapped. The techniques and results of both can be very different, it's a great tool to use. Good luck simplifying your life in an increasingly complex industry. :-(
The pressure sensitivity IMO is awesome. It can give you varying degrees of transparency or, in the case of a non-transparent tool, the thickness of the line will vary, much like using a brush or calligraphic pen.
It's well worth the investment. I would simply love a large one, allowing my arm to perform the strokes, not just my wrist.
I've only had it 24 hours but its brilliant! Illustrator is a different program with it! Tracing around shapes in Photoshop is easier than using a mouse, but its not a huge improvement.
At the moment I'm trying using it as a mouse replacement (but in tablet mode). I'm finding right click menus a challenge, when I slide my finger from one button to the other, the pen tip moves, I'll probably get better with practise.
Overall I'd say its more controllable and comfortable than a mouse, if I can get right clicking down I might be converted, if not its worth it just for Illustrator.