Monday, 13 July 2015

Freehand Drawing for Cutting - iPad Apps to Use

I like to use SCAL4 for designing to cut but there is one area that I just don't get along with and that is freehand drawing. Sorry, I'm used to a brush, pen or pencil that actually touches the surface! I no longer have a drawing tablet as such but I do have an iPad Mini.

Bigger than a phone but not too big to take with me if I go away. I use it everyday for reading in bed and also for drawing apps.

There are A LOT of drawing apps. Many are aimed at children, who I think, should be taught to hold a brush first but that's another matter.
So I had a look at my iPad and these are the apps I have. The ones listed with a * support a stylus, the others don't.  Now by supporting a stylus, I mean actually recognising a capacitive stylus. If you need more info, go to the iTunes store and check the app itself.

In no particular order:

Inkpad - Vector drawing

My Brushes Pro *

Touch Image Manipulator

Sketches Pro *

Bamboo Paper *

Paper by 53 *

Concepts *  Saves as vector but not in a way that is very useful to cutters.

They all have their good points. I love Inkpad but as yet no stylus recognition.

My Brushes Pro uses brush marks, some of which are easily traced, some not.  Great for doing flourishes.
TIM - I think this one has been abandoned re updating.

The last three are great for sketching and writing - even if saved as a JPEG, you can trace easily if you need to.

So, I wanted to show you how a simple drawing done on the iPad can be made into a useful cut file.
I've made two videos, one deals with the drawing in Sketches Pro and the other what to do with it in SCAL.

Here are a couple of photos, I cut out the images made in table mat and then tried it out to emboss - you could of course emboss with the Silver Bullet too.




I hope you will find them useful!  I did a heavier emboss after but it is hard to get a good photo of it! It actually looks better in the flesh.

Video One

 Video Two

Concepts, is, well, totally different. It has it's uses but I don't really think cut files is one of them. Saves as vector if you wish, but only creates brush strokes as lines. Some nifty tools in there though!

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