Analog or digital creativity?

A friend made a remark about artistic creativity, and suggested that an artist can be more free working with analog tools compared to digital tools. Many people have ideas about this, without really knowing what it’s like to draw and paint digitally. For me it’s not about deciding if it’s better to paint with real, analog watercolours or digital watercolours – every way to paint or create art has its benefits and way to be creative. To me it’s a matter of what one likes to work with and also, how the result will be used. When I know that a drawing will end up in print or digital publishing for example, then I might as well work digitally from start so that I can control the quality better. But, others have other ways to create drawings and I think part of the creative work is to find working methods that suits you and give you the result you want.

Anyway, I started to paint eyes with the purpose to show how I work digitally, but also with ”digital analog tools”. Note: I just painted my inner image of what eyes look like, I didn’t look at any photo.

Brown eye, I used any digital tool that I wanted to use and I worked with layers.

This is the first eye I painted. I used Tayasui Sketches on my iPad Pro. I had no limits to how I could use the digital tools, I used many kinds of brushes, shapes, layers and blending effects.

Green Eye, I used ”almost analog digital watercolours”. It was difficult to get an exact shape though, so in the end I just couldn’t stand the imperfection and used a circle shape so that I could erase the edges and get a better circle. I also added a black circle as a pupil.

I really tried to work in an analog way with Tayasui Sketches. I used wet watercolours and let the colours blend as long as the digital paint was ”wet”. Then I added some details on the dry paint. I worked in only one layer.

But, it was really difficult to get the pupil black enough and I couldn’t stand that the shape of the eye wasn’t a circle, so I gave up my ambitions and used a circle shape so that I could erase the edges until the eye became a circle and I added a black circle as the pupil. And yes that means that I added layer to this otherwise ”analog digital painting”.

Blue Eye, I used digital airbrush, shapes and layers.

I just couldn’t help myself, once I started to paint eyes, I had to do one more… This one is made in Tayasui Sketches using the digital airbrush tools, shapes and layers.

Grey Eye, using digital oil, pastel and chalk in ArtSet

I told myself that I shouldn’t paint more eyes, but then I got the idea to try to do it in ArtSet. ArtSet is digital of course, but it is so analog that it’s almost annoying. No layers. You can’t change the size of the brushes, except for the oil paint – there you get a set of brushes and can choose how thick you want the paint to be. The tools for blending the paint are a bit clumsy to use.

I really tried hard to paint this eye, but in the end I couldn’t stand the imperfect shape and also, the paint looked smudgy and flat. So, again, I decided to open the image in Tayasui Sketches, work on the shape and also use airbrush to soften the smudgy paint, add a black shape as the pupil and of course, to do all this I used layers.

So, would it be more creative to use analog tools? I did think the thought of painting an eye with real, analog watercolours, but, just the thought of it makes me feel trapped into something that I don’t like. I am a digital girl (eh, woman, I am 55 actually) and digital tools feel more easy and natural for me to use.

I think that every artist can release their creativity best with the tools they prefer to use. Simple as that.

Happy Apple shareholders!

Something happened with the Apple shares today. Suddenly the price started to climb up again. When I write this blogpost it’s about ten dollars increase since yesterday and if you look back one year it’s not such a big event – but if you look back to one week ago, it’s something in the economic debate climate that has changed.

Today people laugh at Samsung. Poor Samsung who just launched their new Big Galaxy S 4 and guess what, after a years complaining about Apple not being innovative enough, it’s Samsung’s time to get the complaints. It seems Samsung tries to do what tech people always have done before Apple entered the scene: they invent technical features that the average customer or user doesn’t really care about. They do it just to be able to add another feature to the list, not to make life better for the user.

This is what I read in today’s reviews, so I haven’t tried out a Samsung Big Galaxy S 4 myself.

Still, it’s kind of funny that this should be enough to get the Apple share price increase. I guess we are a lot of people who has waited for the day to come when Apple starts to climb up again and we can’t yet be sure that this is the turning point, but let’s hope so.

I read one interesting comment on Seeking Alpha, by ”scott trader”:

”maybe just maybe samclone doesn’t know where the puck is heading because of aapl using other new suppliers….”

Actually this is exactly what is bound to happen at some point. It’s obvious that Samsung has not only been one of Apple’s suppliers, but also a shameless copycat and since Apple has started to buy their parts from other suppliers, Samsung can’t get their usual sneak peek and inspiration from Apple’s innovation before the products have been launched. Now they have to stand in line and wait for Apple to launch their products like the rest of the world…

If that’s the reason to why Samsung Big Galaxy S 4 disappointed the market, then I think Samsung has yet a lot of disappointments to come. Because, Apple creates products that are grounded in humans, not in tech. Apple is about design and function built to make a difference. Samsung can’t copy that.

And, by the way, it seems like Samsung shares dropped today…

The value of design

Every day we are surrounded by a lot of items that someone has deigned. Some people notice the design, see how smart the designer has been with the pedagogic or function so that it gets easier to use the item. This is also valid for digital design.

Others don’t seem to care about this at all. Maybe they see that something looks better than something else and believes that design is a question of looking good. Others don’t even see if something looks good, they think anything can do… Often it’s very hard for people like us that works with designing print and websites, to understand that so many people doesn’t seem to care a bit about if it’s possible to read information, if it makes sense, if it’s possible to find what you look for and if it feels nice and interesting to read. Design takes part in every part. Design supports function.

The old wailing about Apple was built upon the idea that the devices looked good, but didn’t work so much better than a PC – well, the PC-people did of course believe that PC was a lot better because of a lot of technical functions that they were babbling about frenetic. Then it all changed. Apple is the most valuable company in the world. That’s because they work in a holistic way so that technology and design walks hand in hand to give the customers a good user experience. You can’t just go for technology and neglect the design. Over and over again Apple has showed that they care deeply about design. And it pays off.

It’s interesting to see that the PC and Android people don’t seem to have understood the meaning of how technology and design leads to success – working together!

Friday’s verdict when the Californian court made it clear that Samsung has copied Apple in several ways shows it so well. Some of it is namely about the design, for example the shape of a square icon with rounded corners. I think that the Samsung people better understands that the part of their copying that consists of more technology would be important, but that they haven’t thought about design as ”really important”. I think that they put a lot of effort in solving a lot of technical issues and then the design has just been like a little cherry on the top, something you just add in the end. Nothing important. ”Just do something that looks good! Apple seems to have a good sense for design – try to make it similar!” Just like that. And it got even funnier when they copied Apple’s boxes, but without thinking about if they would be easy to open…

I wonder if they now have understand how it all goes together? Or do they only think that it’s unfair?