Any artist – whether established or aspiring – knows the value of keeping their tools updated, and you might find yourself considering new gadgets to kick off the new decade. However, with new technologies being launched every so often, picking the right tools can be quite a challenge. A great rule of thumb is to consider how your new purchase can cater to your needs. For instance, it was previously discussed in our post ‘Best Tablet for Students to get Started with College!’ that light-weight and sleek tablet PCs are best suited to college students, as they make it easier to move from one class to another. In the same vein, artists need to closely examine gadgets and see that they answer their needs. Here’s a list of things to consider when deciding what gadgets to buy to kick off your artist journey in 2020:
Today every type of artist has a need for a laptop. HP’s discussion on how to pick the best laptop for artists emphasizes that there are a number of features to keep in mind when choosing a new device. Here is what you need to look out for:
All software demands a unique performance from your laptop. If you work with Adobe Illustrator or any similar program, you will want to purchase a laptop that has the newest processor so you can be assured that it can handle everything from basic design to advanced editing.
Performance or touch screen
Usually, laptops for design can also be used for gaming since they brandish the same type of graphics cards and hardware. However, they don’t usually have touch displays that allow for freehand drawing. Do you prefer a 2-in-1 laptop or one that provides more freedom when sketching?
As an artist, you will most likely need a laptop that has a graphics card that can handle high-definition images. You should also check whether it is compatible with the kind of programs you are using.
If you work with files that take up quite a lot of space, looking for a laptop that has a competitive storage space is a must. Laptops designed for artists usually have up to 2TB of storage, which can easily store photos and artwork.
Of course, price is also a principal consideration for many artists. There are drawing laptops that are at a number of price points. Devices that are more portable and flexible usually cost less, while powerful ones cost more. Here is a list of some of the laptop’s you might want to check out:
HP Spectre x360 15t touch performance laptop
Lenovo Flex 5
Dell XPS 15
Technology has enabled artists to create art with just a tablet and a stylus. The Guardian’s guide to tablets listed some of the things you should consider when buying a drawing laptop:
In checking tablet size, you should consider the size of the active area, as well as the size of the overall device. Consider the type of art you are making and use it as your guide in choosing tablet size. If you like to move around and draw in different locations then more compact models may better suit you.
Responsiveness pertains to the speed in which the lines you draw show up on the screen. This depends on your tablet’s drivers, so, before you buy one remember to check the kind of software it can handle and check out customer reviews to make sure it won’t lag when you are working.
As an artist, color accuracy is extremely important as it gives you an idea of how your art would look in print. There are certain applications that you can use to manage how colors are presented on your screen but of course, it would be better to have a tablet that already has good color accuracy.
Resolution refers to the number of lines per inch (LPI) the display of your tablet has, and a higher LPI generally means that you can add more detail to your drawings. Larger drawing tablets tend to have a greater resolution than smaller ones. Below are some of the tablets you might want to take a closer look at:
Samsung Galaxy Tab
Microsoft Surface Pro
There are certain gadgets that specifically made for artists, and they are collectively called peripherals. Creative Pro’s article on peripherals pointed out some aspects you should inspect, such as:
Pressure sensitivity (Drawing Tablet)
Drawing tablets have a pressure-sensitivity level ranging from 300 to 3000. Going for those with a greater number will enable you to make finer distinctions in the thickness of the lines you draw. Beginners can start with tablets that have at least 1,024 pressure levels, while more experienced artists should have at least 2,048.
Controls (Drawing Tablet)
Drawing tablets usually come with function keys that can be programmed according to your needs. Sometimes the controls can be found around the drawing area of the tablet, other times it’s on the stylus pen.
Concept Art Empire’s article showed that styluses come in three different kinds: battery-powered, rechargeable, and EMR. Battery-powered styluses are usually thicker while the rechargeable ones are slimmer and can fit comfortably in your hands. The newest of the bunch, EMR styluses use innovative electromagnetic frequency for power so you are saved from worrying about extra batteries or having an available power source.
Software compatibility (Scanners)
You can usually get a decent scanner at an affordable price but the downside is that the software drivers of scanners are very rarely updated. So, even if your scanner works perfectly fine, you might not be able to use it with your new computer or an updated operating system. Remember to buy a scanner whose software is not only compatible with your devices but is also easy to update.
Huion INSPIROY Q11K
Canon LiDE220 A4 Scanner