I have been interested in drawing my own graphics to add to my teaching products for quite some time. I have dabbled a little bit with Photoshop and Paint, but haven’t really been able to produce anything that looks too good!
I’ve tried a few different options, such as hand drawing, scanning the image and then attempting to draw over it and add colour within the program. I haven’t had much luck with this, as I have been using a mouse and the control isn’t the best. Also I’m not that familiar with these programs so it’s been difficult to know how to use them correctly.
The other day I was in a forum and teachers were talking about how they create their own clipart. One of the options mentioned was to draw on either the iPad or iPhone. I hadn’t really considered this before, so I thought I would give it a go.
The recommended program to use was ArtStudio. So off I went to the App store and downloaded the free version to my iPhone and iPad. Below is a screen shot of the main drawing page.
First impressions are pretty good. It seems quite easy to use, although using my finger doesn’t really provide very accurate control. So…off I went to the shop and bought a stylus pen. It was much easier drawing with the pen and it’s very similar to using pen and paper.
My Little Miss Two saw me drawing on the iPad and definitely had to have a go. Whenever she sees me with the pen she wants to do some drawing and we have all kinds of tantrums if we don’t let her draw ;-). She is getting quite good with the pen and spray can tool. Below is a drawing she did for her Grandma.
If you’re familiar with some of the basic features of Paint or Photoshop then you will have no problems with using this app. Some of the basic drawing features include: pencil, wet paint brush, paint, spray paint, eraser, smudge, fill, text and clone. You are also able to set white or transparent backgrounds and work with layers.
The other feature I like on this free version is the Lesson Categories. There are 4 free lessons that show you how to draw a particular object, such as a cat. It draws the lines in and you trace over them, so pretty easy.
Now I’m no artist, actually very much far from it. But I like the idea of being able to add my own graphics to teaching items that I create. And I am a believer that drawing is something I can get better at with practise.
Below is my go at drawing the cat from the Lesson Category. It’s nothing too fantastic, but it’s a start. I have played around with the fill tool to add the colour.
If you’re lucky enough to have iPads in your school, then this app is definitely one that you can have some fun with. It’s a great way to introduce graphic design to your students and the free version should be ample to get your students started. You can always use the Lesson Category to get them used to drawing in the lines. One of the things the free version doesn’t do is allow you to email the drawing. However, you are able to save the image to the iPad’s camera roll. I did this and then emailed the image to myself so I could save it to my computer.
Mmmm….now to try and master the various tools so that I can produce some of my own graphics. If I ever produce any that look somewhat good I will post them here so you can let me know what you think 😉
Have you used any drawing apps either in the classroom or to produce your own graphics? I’d love to hear about your experiences below in the comments.