How Artists And Designers Benefit From Using A Tablet


Tablet computers have existed for about 20 years, but the introduction of the original iPad in 2010 led to an influx of new tablets on the market. Initially, tablets were seen as niche devices for technology enthusiasts. They were big, bulky, slow and expensive. Most people regarded tablets as nothing more than oversized smartphones. Fast forward 7 years, and tablets have greatly increased in popularity. You’ll see them everywhere from coffee shops to corporate offices to restaurants. There are thousands of tablet specific applications and accessories available. Several people have completely replaced their traditional laptops with tablets, and tablets are commonly used in schools and the educational marketplace.

As a creative professional, you may be wondering how you could possibly benefit from using a tablet. After all, they still aren’t nearly as powerful as a standard computer and most importantly they don’t run full versions of the Adobe applications or any of the other creative programs available on Mac and PC. It’s true, tablets lack some of the key functions of standard computers, but there are some major advantages that tablets have over traditional desktops and laptops.


Tablets Have Several Applications Specifically Designed For Artists

In the earliest days of the iPhone, Apple released several commercials about the App Store available on iPhone. The central theme of these commercials was: There’s an app for that. The premise is that there is literally an app for everything. As the App Store continued to grow, developers started created apps that were specifically designed for the iPad. These apps weren’t just enlarged versions of iPhone apps. These apps were crafted to work on a larger screen and take advantage of the more powerful hardware included inside the iPad. There are apps for sketching, painting, vector creation, layout editing. photography. video editing, music creation and so much more. Many of these apps provided functionality that isn’t available on standard computers. These apps weren’t limited to just the iPad. Developers often create apps for both the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store for Android. This provides flexibility for artists to choose the tablet that they are most comfortable with.




There Are Several Accessories That Make Tablets More Powerful Than A Computer

By itself, a tablet is a great companion tool for your everyday tasks. When you combine a tablet with a keyboard and stylus, the possibilities are endless. Keyboards were the first category of accessories available for tablets. When you attach a keyboard to your tablet it instantly becomes a small laptop or netbook device. You can type essays, send long form emails and even create and play a Power Point presentation. Many people want a thin and light laptop for traveling, but these types of laptops are often too expensive. Tablets offer a comprise. They’re thin and light and they can accomplish most of the same things a laptop can for half the price.

A very popular tablet accessory is the stylus. A stylus makes drawing on a tablet much easier and more accurate than drawing with your fingers. As more people embraced drawing and visual planning on tablets, a new category of styli was created. This category of styli is designed to work directly with a tablet via the Bluetooth connection. These smart styli have some very sophisticated features. The primary goal of the smart styli is to mimic the feel of drawing on physical paper. You’ll start by pairing your stylus to the app that it integrates with. Once paired, the stylus can offer features such as palm rejection and pressure sensitivity.

Artists can choose their favorite creative app and purchase the appropriate stylus for that app to unlock more features and drawing control. Several companies offer styli and companion apps including Adobe, Wacom and Evernote. Samsung took the concept of the smart stylus to the next level with its Galaxy Note line of phones and tablets. This line of products included an attached stylus designed by Samsung based on the Wacom technology. The stylus offered additional features such a quick menu access, pressure sensitivity, handwriting recognition and enhanced palm rejections. Apple also offers a stylus that is compatible with its Pro line of iPads. Apple’s stylus, the Apple Pencil offers many of the same features offered by Samsung’s line of Galaxy Note devices.


Tablets Are An Affordable Alternative To Traditional Drawing Tablets Such As The Wacom Tablet Devices

For years, digital artists have spent thousands of dollars on drawing tablets. Most artists are familiar with the Wacom Cintiq tablets that can be upwards of $3,000. Wacom and many other manufactures offer lower cost drawing tablets, but they don’t offer nearly as mean features and customizations. Most modern tablets such as the iPad and the Samsung tablets can be used as a second monitor or display for your computer. This allows you to connect your tablet to a computer and use it in the same way you would use a Wacom drawing tablet. There are apps available on both the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store that allow you to use your tablet directly with programs such as Illustrator, Sketchbook, Pixelmator and Photoshop. You can combine a smart stylus with your tablet to create an affordable alternative to those expensive drawing tablets. You can also save time digitizing your physical artwork because you’ll be able to draw directly on the screen of your tablet and see your artwork appear instantly in the program of your choice on your computer.




There are some great options available for tablets and accessories. A little creativity goes a long way when it comes to using your tablet to create artwork. The possibilities really are limitless.