Take your art on to the road

Cre­ates a Lord of the Rings-in­spired dig­i­tal paint­ing, us­ing Wa­com’s por­ta­ble Cin­tiq Com­pan­ion

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Steve Ar­gyle paints Tolkien with the Cin­tiq Com­pan­ion.

’m tasked with cre­at­ing a promo piece for an event I’ll be at­tend­ing in Auck­land this spring. But hav­ing three weeks on the road doesn’t leave much stu­dio time. What bet­ter time to put my shiny new(ish) Cin­tiq Com­pan­ion to the test in ho­tels, con­ven­tion cen­tres, planes, restau­rants and bars?

Sketch­ing on it feels very nat­u­ral. As long as you’re near the cen­tre of the screen, it makes marks just as you feel it

IFe­bru­ary 2015 should. Near­ing the edges, the par­al­lax be­comes a bit more of an is­sue, and things don’t land quite as pre­cisely. The screen is great. Small Cin­tiqs and tablets that I’ve used have suf­fered from poor colour re­pro­duc­tion and shal­low view­ing an­gles that make it im­pos­si­ble to fin­ish a piece. The Com­pan­ion has none of th­ese prob­lems; you can work start to fin­ish on it. The high pixel den­sity is awe­some, but with one ma­jor draw­back: its but­tons and slid­ers are tiny. This ex­ac­er­bates any dis­crep­ancy be­tween the cur­sor and your sty­lus. You can size up the in­ter­face, but that comes with its own is­sues.

But by far the great­est ad­van­tage, and the rea­son to have it, is the porta­bil­ity. It’s a bit big and heavy if you’re com­par­ing it to a tablet, but not so much so that you won’t be happy to tote it around. Whether sketch­ing, or work­ing on fin­ish­ing touches, the Com­pan­ion can ben­e­fit your art and your sched­ule by en­abling you to work any­where.

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