Pro­cre­ate 2

With a new en­gine, in­cred­i­ble fea­tures and a whole world of brush cus­tomi­sa­tion op­tions, the world’s best iPad art app has just got bet­ter.

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Price $5.99/£3.99 Com­pany Sav­age In­ter­ac­tive Web­cre­ Con­tact feed­back@sav­

When the iPad was re­leased some three-and-a-bit years ago it changed ev­ery­thing. Soft­ware com­pa­nies saw their chance to get in bed with the new shiny tech­s­late. Au­todesk’s Sketch­Book Pro proved to be a de­cent piece of soft­ware for quick draw­ings, Adobe cre­ated ca­sual vec­tor-based draw­ing with Ideas, and Am­bi­ent De­sign trans­lated ArtRage from the desk­top to the tablet.

Yet one piece of soft­ware fared bet­ter than all of them: Pro­cre­ate. Cre­ated by Sav­age In­ter­ac­tive, it was writ­ten ex­clu­sively for the iPad so the Aussie de­vel­oper could con­cen­trate on mak­ing a great art pro­gram with­out the faff of An­droid cross-com­pat­i­bil­ity or rescal­ing it to fit on an iPhone. The app was well-re­ceived and bagged an Ap­ple De­sign Award for its natty in­te­gra­tion of hard­ware and soft­ware.

Pro­cre­ate 2, then, has a cer­tain amount of pres­tige to live up to – and we’re pleased to say it’s im­proved on per­fec­tion. The most im­me­di­ately no­tice­able change is to the aes­thetic, which is brought in line with Ap­ple’s iOS7 translu­cent up­date.

Fire up a blank can­vas and you’ll see the op­tion for 4K, an­other new fea­ture. This size is be­com­ing more preva­lent in the world of dig­i­tal art, but it’s rarely used as a pre­set on tablet apps be­cause of the size of the files in­volved. Thank­fully, Pro­cre­ate utilises the 64-bit power of the lat­est gen­er­a­tion of iPads (Air and iPad Mini with Retina) to han­dle epic com­po­si­tions.

Brushes are Pro­cre­ate’s forte and even these have been made a lot more gran­u­lar

The soft­ware also taps into the pow­er­ful GPU to pro­vide some awe­some ef­fects that you’d usu­ally only find in high-end desk­top soft­ware. Op­tions for Gaus­sian Blur, Sharpen, Noise, Color Bal­ance and Curves are all avail­able to give your im­ages a bit more (or less) of an edge, and once ap­plied they can be ad­justed in­stan­ta­neously by swip­ing your fin­ger across the screen.

Brushes are Pro­cre­ate’s forte and even these have been made a lot more gran­u­lar. The level of cus­tomi­sa­tion is in­cred­i­ble: each brush has six menu pages so you can ad­just shape, grain and dy­nam­ics. We found it best to sim­ply fid­dle with the slid­ers, but there’s a com­pre­hen­sive in­for­ma­tion screen avail­able for each. That Pro­cre­ate has a vi­brant Pho­to­shop-es­que brush shar­ing com­mu­nity says it all.

The only dis­ad­van­tage to all these new fea­tures is that it lags a lit­tle on our first-gen­er­a­tion iPad Mini. It’s still smooth and sharp, but zoom­ing and mov­ing a 4K file around re­sults in no­tice­able pauses and chop­pi­ness. But it’s such a re­fined and grat­i­fy­ing app that it’s quite pos­si­bly the best rea­son in the world to up­grade to a new iPad.

Matt Hubel’s re­design of Teenage Mu­tant Ninja Tur­tles’ Shred­der be­gan in Pro­cre­ate, be­fore be­ing taken into Pho­to­shop for a lick of vis­ual gloss. Pablo Uchida used Pro­cre­ate’s curves fea­ture in his curvy cre­ation Pros­pace.

Patipat Asavasena’s art was cre­ated in Pro­cre­ate, de­spite hav­ing a pol­ished Pho­to­shop look. You’re given plenty of op­tions to achieve the per­fect brush stroke

in Pro­cre­ate. Ad­just­ment tools such as Curves and Color Bal­ance mean you don’t nec­es­sar­ily have to ex­port your work into an­other art pro­gram to fin­ish it off.

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