Drawing apps.


These days all of my drawing is done on Sketch Club. Draw Something is over and most of the people I had become friendly with moved on to other drawing apps. I tried a few drawing apps and after drawing on Art Studio, Paint Studio, and Procreate, I decided to use Sketch Club because it seems to be the easiest one for me to use. Sketch Club has a very large, active group of people who draw a lot and post their work daily. Sometimes several times a day. There also is a very active social aspects to the app. People comment on drawings and there are competitions and groups that set challenges, so anyone who uses Sketch Club can become involved in the social activity and in the drawing.

At first I found the social aspect daunting. If people like your work they say something nice. If they like it a lot they can give you a heart. Then you, the recipient of the heart ought to leave them a message thanking them for the gift of a heart. In order to get hearts to give to people you need to win challenges, enter competitions, like and comment on drawings, and other ways within the app that I may not be aware of. I discovered that it is possible to buy hearts from Sketch Club from their web site. The purchase is made through Amazon.com and for me, this has been the easiest way for me to reciprocate hearts and give hearts to drawings I like.

Sketch Club is actually an enormous art fair. In it one can find fantastic well drawn super realistic digital drawings, amateur drawings, professional drawings, cartoons, childrens art, and tons and tons of copies of other peoples art lifted from internet sites such as Pinterest. The issue of people copying art has concerned me because not only does it go into the area of copyright infringement, it is stealing or plagiarism. Many of the artists on Sketch Club do not know the difference between using a reference and simply copying or reproducing someone’s art and then referring to the image copied as a reference.

I plan to write about this and other features of Sketch Club in my next post.

I See but Know Nothing

This digital drawing is in response to the Monkey Sidebars word Surreal. I had no preconceived idea of what I was going to draw but in the spirit of surrealist imagary, I started with an abstract composition and then let my mind respond to the colors and shapes I was creating. It is a drawing I would like to make into a larger painting. The drawing was created in the game of DrawSomething2 without any additional work done in any other application.  When DrawSomething2 works, it is a very good drawing app.

I am now firmly committed to drawing digitally. The drawing game of Draw Something has taught me a lot about digital drawing.  I have learned how to manipulate digital drawing tools and I have met  artists from all over the world.  However, recently there have been numerous problems with the game of Draw Something2.  Lost drawings, server crrashes,  and other issues have resulted in my becoming interested in trying out other digital drawing programs.  The app called Sketch Club is the most popular and has been recommended to me by several of my Draw Something drawing partners and Facebook friends.  It has many marvelous features and fantastic drawing tools, although the learning curve is proving to be rather slow for me. Nevertheless, the best thing about this app is that there are so many tutorials available on You Tube and within the app itself.  It also is a social app in that there is a chat feature and there are many opportunities to interact with other people who are also drawing. I have been using it a lot for my Monkey Sidebars drawings.

Digital drawing has made me into a miniaturist.  Previously I had been painting  very larger canvass or drawing and printing on  paper  that is 22 x 30″.  My digital drawings are on a standard IPad, 9.4″ x 6.6″ and the size of each drawing is very small.  These drawings can be reproduced in a larger size, but the fact that the drawings are so small changes the relationship of the image space in a very fundamental way.  Not only size, but the time it takes to draw an image is radically changed.  I may spend several hours on a drawing, but with an actual large drawing, it may take me days or even weeks to complete the work.  All this means a complete change in the way I think about constructing a drawing.  A digital drawing can be changed constantly.  Ideas can be expressed and tossed quickly.  A drawing on paper means that the gestures and marks are more permanent and therefore, more thought needs to be put into each line and stroke and color.  Digital drawings can be tried out in different color schemes, particularly when an app has many layers to work on.  An actual drawing is one layer.

Digital drawing is much more spontaneous than drawing on paper.  There are endless possibilities for experimentation in terms of colors, textures and shapes. This spontaneity makes it a particularly exciting format for abstract art.

Science Fiction

Monkey Sidebars word was Science Fiction

I have previously mentioned how the game of Monkeysidebars has stimulated my imagination by providing words to draw that may be unusual, provocative, or out of the odinary.

Waiting for Godot

Monkey Sidebars word was Absurd

I drew an imagined otherworldly landscape in reponse to the words Science Fiction.  The word Absurd made me think of Samuel Beckett’s classic play “Waiting for Godot” now playing on Broadway.  I’ve seen the play several times and each time I came away from the drama with many questions and numerous ideas about the meaning of life and art. This isn’t abstract and I used a Google  reference I had seen some time ago referring to the play. But in this case I wanted to express the isolated loneliness engendered by the dialogue in the play. It is a fairly literal depiction.  Sunday’s word is quagmire.  I don’t have that drawing yet.

Monkey Side Bars is a twice-a-week drawing game where you are challenged to a piece of art on a specific theme. The game was created just a few weeks ago by several artists who had been posting their art on Instagram.

I noticed that several times a week a number of the pictures on Instagram said Monkeysidebars.  It looked like a fun game and I wanted to find out about it. I asked one of my Facebook artist friends how could I get in on it and she introduced me to the other players and to the game. The game works because the people who participate enjoy the challenge of creating an interesting drawing. They also get pleasure out of seeing everyone else’s work on the reveal day.

Players take turns selecting the theme for each round. Everyone submits their drawing at the same time on Wednesday and Sunday.  An interesting word is selected by different members of the group.  The word needs to be illustrated in no particular style.  Artists can do the drawings in DrawSomething or in any other digital app or by hand using traditional materials. More information about the game, word lists, members, and how to join can be found on the Monkeysidebars Website. The different time zones are listed here. A listing of the Member Monkeys’ Instagram Galleries can be found here. My Instagram Gallery is here.

 

 

Previously I wrote about my interest, perhaps addiction to the mobile app called Draw Something2 by Zynga.  I have been drawing continuously ever since the latest edition of the application was published.  The application has a lot of features but it also had and still have a number of bugs in the operation of the various aspects of the program.  One of the most vexing problems for some people is the need to limit the file size for each drawing.  The game calls this aspect the Ink level.  An increase in the ink level is probably what most serious players would like to see improved. Some people complain of numerous crashes whereby their drawings are lost and drawings disappear from galleries that each game player has where their drawings are displayed. Eventually, it will be impossible to exhibit every drawing because there are so many players accumulating large galleries full of their art.

Another side effect of DrawSomething has been the creation of a community of artists who collaborate and share information with each other via chat and through communication by using a mobile app called Instagram . It is there that a group of artists have joined together to play a game called Monkeysidebars.  Each week  two words are chosen by different individuals. Everyone playing the game has to draw their interpretation of the word and every Wednesday and Sunday, at exactly 5PM CST for me, but whatever time is the equivalent time in other parts of the world, everyone posts their drawing on Instagram at the same time.

A group of more than 50 artists living in Australia, Italy, Holland, England, and all over the United States participate. They often chat with each other prior to the time of submission. The drawings submitted are beautifully rendered pieces of digital art.  Not everyone who plays this game is using DrawSomething2 for their digital drawing.  A number of these artists are using more powerful drawing programs to create their masterpieces.  Most of the artists draw on tablets or smart phones, but there are also some who participate using traditional art materials that they scan or photograph in order to create a digital image. Monkeysidebars, or MSB has become my new addiction.  I get a lot of pleasure out of the count down prior to the 5PM posting. All of my drawings can now be seen on Instagram.

Bird

DrawSomething bird

Draw Something 2 is the upgrade to Draw Something. It is now much more than a charade game. It has become a full service drawing application with a number of drawing tools, including a watercolor brush and a highlighter tool.  There are patterns and a stamp tool as well as a crayon and an air brush tool.  It is possible to draw very realistic and  complex images. The charade aspect of the game is transformed, but there are still many players who want to play a game and do not want to try to draw something in a more advanced way. In addition, there are many people who play the game who do not want to learn to draw.  They just want to play a game on their tablets or smart phones. The serious artists who draw on the game  have created an enormous digital art gallery of their work. Anyone who plays the game has access to all of this amazing art.  Their art can be followed and artists become very popular with a huge public who is also playing the game.  In my case I have at this time, September 2013, over 27,000 followers. That number amazes me.

A consequence of the social aspect of DrawSomething2 is that the many players who are addicted to the game have started Fan Facebook pages where players can ‘friend” each other and engage in activities related to the drawing aspect of the game. Many artists belong to these Facebook groups and are able to display the art that they create in galleries provided by Facebook for the different fan sites.

At the same time, many of these same artists send their pictures to another app called Instagram.  It is on this site that the friendships among the players continue to expand because IG has a system of hash marks (#) and @ signs that refer artists to each other and to similar subjects.