February 27, 2013

My old Wacom is simple and cool



My Wacom Graphire4 has customizable  express keys, tablet wheel  and a pressure-sensitive eraser and cordless battery-free pen.

Hello friends and Zazzlers!

Last December I bought a new computer and I am still updating software to it. I gave this buy a lot of thought. I did not want to spend much, I do not have a lot of money these days! But I wanted a good machine. Finally I decided and bought ASUS and  picked Windows 7 because I have very old software and I was affraid it would not install on Windows 8. My main concern was Freehand because I have lots and lots of works created with Freehand. And I still use it often even if no updates to FreeHand have been made for over years. Adobe has no plans to initiate development to support it but I like Freehand because I can use it even with my eyes shut! Windows 7 worked just fine. I just needed to download new drivers for my scanner and Wacom tablet. My scanner is old but I wasn't interested in buying a new one. The Epson scanner was installed nicely and the one thing left was my Wacom Graphire4. Yesterday it also installed nicely, yeah! 


I have seen some Zazzlers asking questions about this kind of digital tablets so I am writing a few lines about it. I have this Wacom tablet maybe for eight years now. Wacom is the best brand but probably there are many others in the market that can perform as well. This is not a professional model but is good enough. When I bought it I was just an amateur and this was perfect for a beginner. Even now, that I have more experience, it still works good enough for me.  Measuring about 280mm x 260mm, with an active area of about 210mm x 150mm, and a height of 18mm, the tablet is  quite manageable and is lightweight. It has a scroll wheel at the top of the tablet and two buttons on the side to move back and forward. It has four switches on the back that allow the plastic cover to be removed. You must always work with the plastic cover on. Removing it you can place photos or other images underneath and customize how it looks. The pen has a rubber grip that has two side switches buttons; the upper switch is double click, the other one , I guess not. I stopped thinking how it works! The one on the top it's an eraser.The tablet just connects to the computer via USB cable. It's plug and play. Don't forget that you need to have some kind of graphic software installed in your computer in order to use it. Essentially, though, a tablet  it's just a mouse. You can draw, doodle, take notes and edit images. I just use my tablet when I want to paint with Photoshop. You can also drop the pen and use it as a touchpad for your computer, an alternative to your mouse.  A mouse does not have pressure.  The tablet can detect  pressure, allowing users of Photoshop or other graphic program to control the thickness or solidity of brush stroke. If you want to learn more about it you can take a look at the manual.
The seagull I am showing was one of my first paintings in Photoshop. I was learning and at the time I had no tablet. It was made with the mouse. With tablet is a lot easier!


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