Join 500,000+ Artists
Its' free and it takes less than 10 seconds!
I'm either really curious or very nosey, take your pick. I've been searching through posts and reading everyone's thoughts on the subject so I figured this might satisfy the curiosity of others wondering the same thing. I know it's all a matter of what works best for you as an individual with your own style and technique so this info won't affect any of my future tablet purchases, rest assured.
I see too many folks use smaller tablets... 6X8 or smaller. I saw what happened to a friend at ILM one day... all of a sudden it looked as if an egg appeared under his forearm... it was no egg. I won't go into the details; it was nearly a year before he could draw again and to this day there are still some problems. He switched hands for a while, got to be decent with it, and basically did the best he could. But even with a tablet, the small repetetive motions can absolutely screw you. Get one as large as you can... style and technique have nothing to do with your tablet. You'll adjust to what you have.
dah... maybe i won't buy that 6x8 wacom...
Vf: whhhat?? What the heck was on his arm?
Personally I like the 9X12, its a great sized tablet. really great to work with, and its not huge and cluttering to your table like the bigger ones are.
Not on, in... just hope your muscles and tendons never go through the same. It can end a career.
While we're on the subject... some folks would read a post like this and think it a good idea to exercise the muscle and forearm to strengthen it... well to an extent, but basically NO.
Your arms, just as your eyes, back, neck... need some stretching, but mostly they need rest. Try to be aware, at least once an hour, of taking all tension off of your arms, your shoudlers, etc... you have to relax the areas, or you can pay for it later. Light opposing stretches will help, but relax, melt if you can... you really need it.
I went with the 6x8 mainly because the bigger tablets were out of my price range back then.
Good point, vfx... I like to melt. Here's a tip I learned from a friend with CPS. Sleep with your hands open, fingers stretched out, instead of in fists, as much as you can.
Vf: I'm still relaly confused. Something happened to his arms, but what??
The poor guys tendons got all contorted and twisted up from too many small repetetive movements with his hand.... (because the wacom was small, he had no room to really move his whole arm and shoulder while drawing)
That is a terrible story, of course, but just for a moderate wacom user, are 6x8s too small?
just for those of you who are interested in learning more about injuries caused by repeated physical
movements like using computer input devices, playing guitar and so on.
The comprehensive term for these kind of injury is Repetitive strain injury, short RSI.
I just recommend you to search for this on google, you'll find lot"s of pages describing symptoms
i agree with giotto face about larger tablet being better. don't u guys remember basic life drawing when the instructors would tell you to draw with large movements of your arm? works the same with the large tablet.
Got one Question for the wacom people with a semi large to large pad.
How on earth can you draw with bare arms on it?
Even with a longsleeve shirt my hand eventually
gets slightly moist and shows huge friction between the pad making it impossible to make long strokes...
i'm extremely curious how you guys handle this.
I also only work on a 4x5 Intuos - I was the first one around to buy a tablet and so had no idea whether it was worth its price, thus I decided to take an Intuos (instead of a FGraphire or No Name Tablet) and go for a small one becaus of the cost. Also, I have limited space on my desk. And: I only use it occasionally, prefer to use traditional media. So for people like me a small tablet is all you need. Once you start working with it professionally or on a daily basis I guess a larger one would be better. BTW, I have mine since January 2001 and it's still doing fine.
I've used a 4x5 since Wacom first released them (like, what eight years or more?) and have never had any physical problems as a result.
Of course, I don't tend to do 12 hour marathons with it every day and when I'm not drawing I use a mouse.
The reason I went with the tiny tablet was that I had tried a 12x12 tablet before that and within an hour my shoulder was aching, my forearm was raw and the bottom half of the tablet was getting grimey. A large tablet was just uncomfortable as hell for me to work with. Plus, even when I'm drawing with traditional tools, I've never been a "move the whole arm guy" I've always been a "controlled wrist movements guy."
I keep my tablet off to the right where your mousepad would go rather than trying to put it straight in front of me or anything. In fact, when I'm not drawing with it, it IS my mousepad (I use a regular mouse, not the Wacom one).
Maybe positioning has something to do with injury risk?
The 4x5 tablet perfectly suits the way I draw and for me at least offers far more control over my lines.
But I don't claim to be representative of anything resembling "normal".
One of the nice things about larger tablets is you can map a smaller area to work in if you feel the need to. I have a 9x12 and it fits my needs perfectly. Larger tablets may be pricey but they can be a very good investment if you do a lot of cg or are going into a cg related field.
About the moisture on the tablet, I clean mine regularly and wipe off moisture and dust whenever there's noticable friction, I'm not sure there's any way to really avoid that if the way you work causes it to accumulate regularly. I guess it's just standard maintenance, I kinda find it to be similar to the way you'd have to blow or dust off a pencil drawing. Maybe someone else has a handy method to avoid this? Fingerless gloves perhaps?
I have never had a problem using a 4x5. I would love to have a larger one, but I have been unable to afford it. I have been using mine over a year (wacom graphire2). This is the first time I have heard of anything bad coming from using a tablet so small. I have no personal complaints.
I had a problem with pain in my wrist before I got the wacom at work also, and it's pretty much gone away.
I also want to suggest that you keep "soft" stuff under your arm and elbow when working on the pad/mouse for hour+
It really helps your arm rest.
I have a 6x9 at work and a 9x12 at home, and I find that the smaller size is easier for me to work with since the 9x12 is hard to fit in my lap.
I REALLY like the new pens better with the squishy grip. My 9x12 has the pencil-like stylus, it sucks because I get sweatypalm and it gets all slippy.
I've had the same problem about the moist getting all sticky on the tablet...
I found that one way to reduce it is to place a piece of paper on top of the tablet. I'm using wacom graphire, which has this plastic sheet on top. Take a piece of paper and fold it in the ends and place it around this plastic sheet...
This technique also gives you some friction for the pen, which sometimes makes the feel more natural... or at least, I think!
When i was playing online games with LOW sensi... after a while i noticed a bump on top off my hand. next to the wrist.
When to the doctors and he said its GANGLION.. swollen tendon. option i could operate it or leave it and it would stay like that. i was like wtf! so i decided to leave it. considering that this could be low sens related and bascially RSI. so i increased my game sens to high and it disappered after like couple a weeks. I stoped playing games no want to try and start drawing again! I still have a tiny bump but this is cause i havent rested it for a long period.
I do use a wacom smallest one of em all intus2. I do find it diffult to draw with it [ not of cause of hand ] but size. When i am on the comp i put the table on my lap and draw as putting it on the table is just worse for me. imp if some one wants a natural feel a big tablet would be good. I wana get a bigger one!
My advice is to make sure you rest your hands arms and body. Read about RSI etc. Once the tendon becomes weak it will stay weak. Unless you rest it for a loooong time!
[ I need Motivation ]
Repetitive motion stress can be pretty ugly. But I find it very difficult to believe that a small tablet (6x8 or less) can be solely responsible for experiencing injury. If someone is already doing a lot of typing, gaming, or similar activity then a tablet can certainly aggravate the situation. But the aggravation wouldn't be any more than you would get from drawing in your sketchbook or taking notes.
True, true. Depends on what kind of work you are doing also. When I sketch in my 8.5 x 11 pad, I don't go "full-bleed" to the edge, so the 6x8 fits my subjects for tablet work just fine. If I did alot of finished landscapes or enviroments with alot of detail I might find myself suffering from tablet envy. So far, the 6x8 does that trick, no health problems to date. Beside the fact that a budget minded student (or pro for that matter) will see that usually the realEstate / $$$ ratio supports the 6x8 also.
Wer den Harnisch anlegt soll sich nicht ruehmen wie ein der den abgelegt hat.
i have 12X12...i think it's too big, but i've had it over 3 years so it's all i know. so i love her..i mean errr it...
I used a 3 x 4 (active area) wacom pen partner for 3 - 4 yrs fine for when your starting out or have never used a bigger tablet before. Not so great for sketching digitally but fine to lay colour down on a pencil sketch. I found it too small to get any real movement and therefore hampered my digital stuff.
Recently upgraded to a 6x8(active area) old wacom ultra tablet(like been around for about 8 yrs i think) which incorporates the tilt of intuos but only 256 pressure levels(same as pen partner), Made it much easier to paint completely digitally, however the pen partner pen was actually much better imo than the ultra pen with was too thin to hold. Luckily this tablet lets you use pen partner pens on them still with the tilt function?? so i figure all the pens are made to accept this and only the tablets are different?
however i then decided to get a intuos as i saw a bargain on ebay badly advertised no details at all about which tablet it was, so i took the time sent an email and got the reply with like 10 minutes to go before the end of the bid, was pleasantly surprised when i got a pratically brand new intuos 2 6x8(active area) for a third of the retail price
All i can say is the feel of the tablet the weight of the pen and the increased pressure and arm rest on the tablet have impressed me lots. I am most of the time not aware of the tool im using unlike with my previous tablets. And would reccomend getting an intuos to anyone.
My next purchase is going to be a bigger wacom i wanna see what using an A4 oversize would be like.
I’m too poor to buy that many tablets so I just have one 6x8. I want to use a big one they have a 12x18 at school but once I start drawing I don’t really notice the difference that much.
I got mine from school - 5 finger
i have a 4 x 5 wacom and its fine in that little area you draw on you dont even move that much anyways, its not like you are swinging your entire arm around to draw a huge circle you go in a little small area on the tablet and it is pretty big on the comp screen.
I use my 4x5 Intuos2 because I really can't afford anything else. They're so damn expensive! (But I guess it's worth it because Wacom Tablets are THE tablets to buy...)
I hope to save up 'nuff money for a nice 12x12 by the end of high school...
That and a nice 21" Mac IBook!
For now, I can't complain. Most kids my age don't even have a Wacom...