January 15, 2015 by

Have I found what I’m looking for?

I’ve always been interested in art, drawing and making. I studied Interior and Furniture Design in college. Secretly, I’d love to be an artist…Well I guess its not so secret any more!
I know I should draw and paint more often, but I find the set up process puts me off. When you don’t have a dedicated studio or space, the hassle and mess can be an issue.

This got me thinking about the new generation of art. Things have gone and continue to go digital. We like things made easy for us. For someone like me who likes to draw but doesn’t do it enough, a┬áStylus and Tablet seems like an obvious solution.

So I decided to give it a shot. Drawing people is something I’m interested in, so I thought I’d see how I got on sketching Bono. You might have heard of him, he’s the lead in a little band called U2. Like me – he’s also from Dublin.

I found drawing on the tablet tricky at first. It’s a lot more daunting┬áthan simply using pencil and paper. But with this confusion, comes a lot of possibilities, techniques and styles. Access to colour, line thickness and opacity is literally at your finger tips, or in my case the end of my Maglus.

I chose to work with the free app; Autodesk Sketchbook Express. I began with using the same method I use when drawing with pencil. I sketched in guidelines for the face. I discovered a handy tool called ‘layers’. This meant I could stick the guidelines on a separate layer and turn on/off as needed. I admit that I had trouble switching between layers and it took me a while to figure it out. But with some practice, I can see they’ll be a great benefit.

I was genuinely surprised by how fast the process can be. The speed of creating an image is something that definitely appeals to me. The speed of erasing something is a bonus too – no more smudge marks or ripped paper to deal with. The ability to zoom in for detailing is very handy too.

I ran into some problems which is to be expected when using new technology. Realising that every slight tap on the screen would make a mark or line, resulted in me using the ‘undo’ feature…a lot. For a few minutes, I couldn’t understand why my Maglus wasn’t making any lines. Turns out I was trying to draw white on white.

But embarrassing mistakes aside, I was pleasantly surprised that I really enjoyed the experience of drawing digitally.

I’ve only begun experimenting, the next step will be adding colour and paint.

Can I live with or without it? Definitely with my Maglus.

If you’ve never tried using a Stylus, I say; “give it a go”. You’ve nothing to lose and might love it.
YOU TOO could be a Maglus fan*

Bono - Paula O'Connor

Bono – Paula O’Connor

*I take full responsibility for the bad puns

Paula studied Furniture Design at DIT in Dublin. She uses the Maglus for quick sketches and notes. She loves tea, coffee and yoga(but not at the same time).