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Thread: Traditional vs Digital (Am I ready to go digital?)

  1. #1
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    Traditional vs Digital (Am I ready to go digital?)

    Hi all,

    I recently gotten back into drawing more and I’m still chipping away and working on my fundamentals. I recently acquired my friends Cintiq 13HD and I’ve been thinking about doing more work digitally.
    My concern is if I switch to digital it would hinder my learning and I my start to develop an over reliance on things such as ctrl+z, warp, transform, etc and I wouldn’t develop my fundamental drawing ability as I would traditionally.

    I’ve provided some examples of traditional my work below (copied from photo reference but some are straight copies of other art). What do you guys think, am I overthinking it and going digital would be fine, or should I stick to a more traditional approach until I’ve got my fundamentals are more developed?

    Also, apologies for the poor photo quality, I don’t own a scanner yet and had to use my phone!

    Thanks for your time!

    Last edited by Veritas71; 02-10-2017 at 07:27 PM. Reason: Added images

  2. #2
    Rest In Peace Brokenhill [Moderator] fatmancomics's Avatar
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    Just my personal opinion but if you haven't learned to draw from scratch I don't think you should be going digital.

  3. #3
    Monkey with Crayons [Moderator] Veritas71's Avatar
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  4. #4
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    If you want to go digital then go for it, but I wouldn't completely cut out traditional work. Regardless of your skill level, drawing traditionally helps you develop and maintain skills that will be useful in all types of art.

    Over reliance on digital tools such as Ctl-Z or transform can be a problem, but shouldn't be bad as long as you're conscious of it and trying to make your initial sketches as accurate as possible. If you're using digital tools to change something in your drawing then you're obviously recognizing that something is off and needs to be corrected and there's nothing wrong with using the tools that are available to you IMHO. Just try to keep improving as you go.

  5. #5
    The things you mention--undoes, transformations, etc.--exist traditionally. It's called using an eraser and redrawing something. Digital media just takes the things that you can do traditionally and makes them more accessible and flexible in their use. You don't need to redraw a line--you can change it. It's much faster.

    That being said, digital art doesn't add anything to your artistic ability. If you can't draw without it, you won't be able to draw with it. You still need to learn to paint digitally. And you need to learn how to use the digital tools as well. And the one big drawback for a lot of people working digitally is that it's so easy to change and play around with things that you can lose decisiveness. Traditional work, because it's less forgiving, teaches you to plan things and execute them more directly.

  6. #6
    The Gozerian MLaw's Avatar
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    I say start digital now but stay open to both. Being married to either will only hold you back. Even add sculpting if you can. That said, drawing is drawing. Learning that requires things that are independent of media.. like anatomy, structure/construction, etc..
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  7. #7
    Go digital, it is better to start with digital medium as soon as possible and know it well, but as you need to practice and get a better level I'd say keep an sketchbook with you all the time, the 13HD can't go with you all the time for a quick practice on the fly, normally you will use it for more elaborate work at home rather than sketching, and in my opinion you need to draw traditional sketches and studies at this point, a lot of them. Good luck!

  8. #8
    Do you have to go digital? Not really. Do which ever you like best. Or do both if you want. But you don't have to use approach X. It's all files at the end. Scannned traditional or digital, it doesn't matter. .

  9. #9
    Runs with Scissors [Moderator]
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    Traditional vs. Digital is all a matter of preference. Do what you enjoy.
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  10. #10
    I have an iPad Pro and use the Apple Pencil with it. I like to use digital for sketching out very rough ideas. What I like most about the digital medium is the ability to quickly sketch out color roughs or comps without having to physically grab markers or paints, etc. I paint mostly in acrylics and as such I have my studio set up with paints, brushes, and palettes specifically for that medium. I say that anything that keeps you interested and constantly drawing and sketching is a good thing. I also use traditional paper and ink/paints, but I usually reserve that medium for when I want to render final artwork. Plus, I can sell it as an original.

    As for your question if you are ready to go digital. One of the biggest differences that I have discovered when working digital vs traditional is the way an artist actually creates the art in terms of body involvement. When I did a lot of figure drawing, I actually discovered the benefit of working larger and using not just my hand to draw, but involving also my elbow, shoulder and body as well. You don't get that when you work in front of a computer monitor tethered to a tablet. There is something to be said for working larger and getting that initial experience in your drawing education. So I say mix it up, but if you can, get some life drawing in as that will make you adept at creating artwork that you can translate into any medium.


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