ArtPose & ArtPose Female Edition
These rather nifty iPad apps put fully adjustable 3D mannequins in your pocket
Price £1.99 each
WCompany Shawn Ogle ith iPads fast becoming a dominant medium for portable digital art, it’s no surprise that an entire ecosystem similar to PCs and Macs has sprung up. Instead of Photoshop and Painter we’ve got Procreate and ArtRage, and instead of Poser – the software for manipulating a virtual mannequin - we’ve got ArtPose.
Like the best apps, ArtPose is elegant in its simplicity. Fire it up and you’re presented with either a male or female anatomical figure, depending on which version of the app you’ve bought. A drag of the finger rotates your view, and pinch or punch gestures zoom in and out. Icons in the four corners change the scene, adjusting haircuts and lighting, taking snapshots, moving the camera and adjusting the angles of various joints.
The latter is particularly easy-to-use, with spheres appearing above joints and swipes of the screen adjusting the angle and rotation of limbs. Like Poser, your model can be contorted into some very unusual, unnatural positions, but thankfully ArtPose includes a few predefined poses (for example,
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org running or skydiving) that you can alter further to achieve the perfect stance. You can then use the camera icon to take a JPG snap and then import it to your art program of choice so you can sketch around it, or use it as reference.
The models are of a high quality, and the Unity engine adds some impressive lighting effects. It’s a shame you can’t export figures as transparent PNG images so that they can be imported as a layer in Sketchbook without the slightly annoying backdrop. We’d also like to see a few more body types, but these are undoubtedly planned for further updates. Overall, though, this is a useful and well-priced app and a must-have for iPad artists.
Altering the lighting can produce dramatically different results. The red and green spheres enable you to bend and rotate joints – sometimes a little unnaturally.
Preset hand poses remove the fiddliness of bending individual knuckles and fingers.