Graphics Tablet Tutorial – Making the change — 31 Comments

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  2. Even with all your help i cant do it… I just cant make normal lines.. Really frustrated now because it looks so cool and the art people can make with these tablets are so awesome. I know it takes time, but i just cant do it… I use an ols bambo tablet from my brother, please help me?…

    • Well, maybe you’re pressuring yourself and can’t get relaxed enough to progress? Or maybe the tablet you have isn’t right, too small?
      All I can say is that I have been there and it’s very frustrating.
      My best advice is just don’t give up. Keep practicing, it will suddenly not seem so hard, like all new skills.

      • Thnx for the very fast response! I was thinking of buying a new Wacom Intuos Small, but before I spent al that money i want to know if this is something i really can do it and if i will use it. Do you think that tracing lines of a image will help me get comfotable with it?

        • I have an Intuos 3 A4 and have never regreted buying it. Wacom make the best tablets and Intuos are the best non-screen tablet they do. A smaller tablet means that your movements are exaggerated and less accurate.
          However, a smaller tablet means cost saving, so you have way it up.
          Maybe look on ebay for a second hand Intuos 3 A5 or A4?

  3. Sir, I want to personally thank you for taking the time to give us such a detailed guide on how to use a graphic tablet. I… shall try to learn from it, even if frustration is my worst enemy, because I take every little mistake as a huge failure, diminishing my will to continue. Again, thank you kindly!

  4. Is two yerar I have one, and even if I draw better than before, I still fell the same as I felt before.
    Ideas don’t flow, draw look forced and when i draw traditionally, I spend 1/10 of the tie i spend on tablet.

    Also, i saw on video tutorial that even professional and expert draw slower and worse than how they draw traditionally or with cintiq. I really really hate to draw with graphic tablet (I use it only to ink and to colour) and I believe that the time I use to practice on it is worthless, for this I don’t even practice anymore. I draw traditionally, I scan my drawing and I ink them on grahic tablet.

  5. I’m kind of late to joining the party I see x). What really helped me get used to mine in the beginning (both in speed and in accuracy) was to play osu! (a free rhythm game) with the tablet. It took some fiddling with the settings, but it’s a really fun and easy way to develop muscle memory.

  6. for the dots, slanted lines, and swirl exercise I can’t seem to get my dots a consistent size. Sometimes when I make a dot and then another the second dot affects the first dots size…How did you make the size of each dot so similar? Did you make a dot by taping the surface or by drawing the dot?

    To make the slanted lines and swirl did you connect dots or just do it free hand?

    This whole exercise has been really great by the way!

    • Thank you!
      I am not sure what software you’re using, but the latest dots should not be affecting the size of the previously drawn dot.
      The idea is that you’re using a paint brush or pencil style brush, and you’re trying to get good placement and similar pen pressure. Less of a stab of the pen, and more like a doodle of the dot.
      If the dots are all different sizes, it could be you need to tweak the pen pressure settings of the tablet.
      And the lines are also supposed to be drawn as a separate exercise to the dots. Free hand 🙂

      • I’m using Adobe Photoshop and an Intuos pen and touch. However I do experience a few glitches between tablet/computer communication which I’m not sure how to fix, so I figured thats probably what was happening here. My computer doesn’t have a CD drive so maybe the hardware isn’t downloaded correctly?

  7. I’m new to the art world in general and just received my Intuos pen touch in the mail. I’m greatly enjoying it so far but something I noticed about the “eyes on the monitor” concept. When drawing circles, I found they kept spiraling in instead of just reinforcing the shape. It was awkward feeling since the tablets true draw area was quite small but it was up-scaling to the entire monitor! What I did was adjust the tablet settings to represent a size on the screen (27″) that was closer to the actual size of the tablet (6″x4″ approx). Now my tablet doesn’t represent the whole screen, (making some buttons tricky to get to) and almost instantly, my spirals were looking like spheres again! I think my eyes were seeing something larger than the hand was actually drawing and my hand was trying to compensate. Like, if you were drawing on a big screen tv but only had a small tablet, the scaling might make your brain confused. anyways, it really was a night and day difference once I adjusted the draw area. I’m spending most of my time with simple shapes and lines and this tutorial really helps keep my mind focused and on track!

  8. YUSYUSYUSYUS! This is exactly what I was looking for!
    Bloody fuckin ell! I’ve never been able to draw well, and trying to pick up the skills via a combination of tablet and more traditional means, but been having all kinds of hell trying to make any of my lines, curves, shapes…etc, look half-decent. How come this is the only place I’ve been able to find this kind of introductory exercise? The most I’ve found is a variety of, albeit useful, articles on arm movement.
    Thanks for the awesome tutorials!! :3

    • Yes, I have the same issue. The main thing is the right speed and practice. The tremor in my case is a problem with hand eye coordination. The only way to deal with it was to practice persistently every day, until the muscle memory took over and the outcome was outweighed by the issue. At least 20 minutes Avery day, just drawing shapes.
      The speed is important, as too slow and you over think the shapes and it becomes wonky. Too fast and you have no control.
      By the way, almost no one ends up drawing perfect circles. But with practice you can learn to draw eclipses how you want them for things like wheels in perspective.
      Another thing you could try, stage your circle, draw each quarter, try some practice air strokes just above the paper first, so you know where the line is going before you commit.

      • Thaaank you sooo much fer the very helpful reply!~
        Ah, in my particular case the tremor is pretty constant. Though I’m sure I can overcome with practice. I’m working at finding that middle ground where I don’t have wobble in my lines, but not so fast where I lose meaninful control and come out sloppy for it.
        A seriously helpful idea with the circles, figuring out how to implement it.
        Thankya again 😀

  9. Thanks ! Man oh man ! I’ve been burning to drawing using my Huion & after almost a month of searching for ” Beginner ” instruction it was so nice to find your site. It’s funny how a half hour ago I actually thought about smashing it to pieces & now I’ve calmed down and have some actual exercises to work on. Thanks again and if I could share 3 similar tips I’ve run across on the web. #1 Forget drawing for awhile and use the tablet as your mouse. ( Did that for 3 days & it helped ). #2 Practice writing all the time. #3 Draw simple shapes. And now your tutorials will get me up and running. ( Oh, play mouse based games with the tablet ! – Diablo III, League Of Legends, etc. )

  10. Mark, I just want to say, it’s been 4 or so years since I found this article, not only did it save my butt with drawing, but I’m now in the media industry as an artist, and I point LITERALLY EVERY new digital artist I meet to this article.

    • Wow! that blows me away! I am very pleased that this helped you, and I really appreciate the feedback!

      Hoping the best for you Davis. 🙂

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