My Apple Pencil finally arrived last week. I’ve been experimenting with it in whatever free time I have.
Overall, I like it quite a bit. It paired easily and charges quickly. It’s got a great feel to it. Mostly, I’ve been drawing in Procreate, which I like quite a bit. It does a lot of the things that Photoshop does and has a pretty quick learning curve. I do wish it had a straight-up magic wand tool to select an area.
I adore the different brushes, especially the pencil, graphite and chalk ones that create a really natural tool. They’re better than anything in Photoshop and at least on par with Painter.
The problem I’ve had so far is line fidelity. The iPad Pro is almost too good. I’d like to be able to tweak it so there’s a little more smoothness to my line, the way that I’ve done with my Cintiq and Manga Studio. I can make a pretty crisp line with a brush, but the Apple Pencil isn’t a brush and doesn’t have the same feel.
I’m following the same learning process I did with the Cintiq, Manga Studio and my Nostromo where I forced myself to do a drawing a day using that tool. That’s been helping a lot. The Captain Cold sketch below took almost two hours to do. The Wonder Woman one took less than an episode of Castle. That’s improvement.
The iPad Pro is doing what I expected it to do. Ultimately, I wanted what I call an Eighty Percent Device. Something where I could get 80% of the way to finished. With my current setup, I’d be able to at least create tight pencils for projects. I’m working on getting my inks where I want them. And I’m finally going to be able to sit on the couch and color comics pages! That will work well for me. Ultimately, I’ll still need to take it over to the desktop and tweak and finish those files off, but being able to do 80% of the work on the iPad when I need to makes my convention travel schedule a lot more manageable, so I’m definitely happy with my purchase.