Art Appstravaganza (pt.1)

Since I have a lot of Apps, getting to them one by one might get a little tedious. So the first Friday of each month will be Appstravaganza days. Several Apps of the same type, category etc etc will be rolled into one super review. They’ll most likely be terrible write offs that aren’t even worth sneezing on with some good stuff thrown in. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll watch me flip out on wasted money that could have gone to otherwise bettering my sad little life and you’ll definitely feel a lot better about yourself.

Remote Palette
Version: 1.1
Compatible: iPhone, iPod, iPad - iOS 3.0
Price: $1

Another unfortunate dollar lost due to my insolence and naivety. The dream of unifying my tech into one beautiful monster was still fresh when I got this and I really, really love the idea, believe me. It’s a simple concept. Get this App for the iPhone/iPod and the other for the iPad (or another iPhone/iPod it’s just best realized with the iPad.) Opening both, they connect to each other via bluetooth and communicate over that connection. The iPhone/iPod becomes a palette where you select your brushes and colours while the iPad remains solely as a canvas to be painted on.

The downside is that this App is used only as a toy. When it refers to everything as finger painting and even gives black and white drawings to colour in, that’s when it dawned on me that this App wasn’t meant for what I thought it did. It doesn’t even do that well. There’s no undo/redo, erase is hidden like a bitch, I lost my progress 3 times in the 30 minutes I spent using it to give a demo of what it can do because of its clumsy interface. You can’t even select the precise colour you want, you have a selection of 23 shitty colours.

You can only save it to pictures, no gallery, etc. etc. don’t get it, it sucks shit.

Inspire Pro
Version: 1.2
Compatible: iPad - iOS 3.2
Price: $8

Another one of my firsts. There’s an iPhone/iPod version but the one I’ll be looking at is for the iPad. This was in the time before SketchBook when I was looking for bargains to deliver what I wanted. Had I gave it more chance as something by itself, it’s a pretty good App surrounded unfortunately with sad menus and ugly logos. It has no layers but rather relies on a simplicity of painting for the love of painting.

If I were to use it again I’d simply paint because it has the replication of paint brushes down pat. It was quite educational in testing the physics of paint without getting your fingers smudged or making mistakes you can’t ever take back (not a fan of physical paint as you might have guessed.) The results I got from it are indeed impressive and it was a good start. However it’s an App that can be so much better but I’ve yet to see an update in the many months I’ve had it. Layers for one can make it easier to separate pieces of the painting so that I don’t have to worry about them clashing.

Then again maybe that’s the interest and appeal in it. If you’re a patient person it has my recommendation but be warned that it doesn’t work with you half the time.

ArtStudio for iPad
Version: 3.22
Compatible: iPad - iOS 3.2

Price: $3

The feeling that this’d replace SketchBook was very brief and optimism with me is like a dismembered thumb in the piranha tank. Always they have potential and this had all the features I was looking for, auto save and custom brushes (it maxes at 6 layers but I figured it’s probably a hardware thing.) Auto save does what it does no problem and custom brushes does exist, behind a metal curtain that is.

Navigating through the menus and getting through this App is like an obscure Olympic Event, there are so many rules and interface issues it’s not even funny. It’s nice to have the whole page just for doodling and painting, however I’m a fickle person and I can’t imagine someone using the same brush stroke, opacity, colour, layer, etc for more than a minute. As I said, it has the features but you have to find them and figure out how to use them.

My one complain with SketchBook that made it unappealing to use was the number of presses it takes to change the brush. This one requires more presses and a lot more thinking. It’s useable however only barely and you can do so much better for the price. The only two things I’ll give it is it has selection tool and it exports in .pdf which I didn’t know was so freaking hard to do. If you have layers, you should be able to export as a .pdf. Not complicated people.

Do NOT want. >:(

So there you go. My disappointment splashed on a word processor screen with a blinking cursor while I drink myself into a stupor. These are just my opinions but I like to think that other people will agree with me when they spend no more than 5 minutes with them. There’s so much better out there and I’ve found a few of them, yet my satisfaction isn’t quenched when I believe art on the iPad can be so much more easier and accessible.

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