David Jon Kassan, a Brooklyn based artist I wrote about in 2008, recently posted a short (7 minute) video to YouTube in which he is shown in time-lapse Finger Painting on the Apple iPad from the live model.
The iPad, for those who have been living in a cave in Tierra del Fuego until this morning, is Apple’s new touch-screen device, so Kassan is painting with his finger, a pretty blunt instrument compared to a brush, pencil or stylus.
Kassan is painting in Brushes, a very capable digital painting app for the iPhone and iPad that allows for most of the basic tools of digital painting, including, of course, the ability to zoom in on the work.
Though it doesn’t allow for variations in pressure, a factor most of us who do digital drawing and painting have come to rely on, it does allow for changes in brush size and opacity, as you can see in the video.
(For another mention of the Brushes iPhone app, see my post on the New Yorker covers of Jorge Colombo.)
Most of us associate digital painting with work from the imagination, particularly given its popularity in concept art and science fiction and fantasy illustration, but a number of people use it to sketch or paint from life.
I’ve used a laptop, Painter software and a tablet and stylus to sketch and paint from the model, but it’s a bit of an awkward proposition. The lack of pressure sensitivity seems a fair trade-off for the easy portability and simplicity of the iPad (though you would want to make sure it was well-secured to your easel – grin).
Unlike the use of similar applications for the iPhone and Nintendo DS, the iPad is large enough to do more than small sketches. Kassan takes the painting pretty close to the state of a finished portrait.
Kassan has updated his website since I last wrote about him, including new work, a blog, and more videos.
In particular he has released a new three-hour instructional DVD, Drawing Closer to Life (images above), that follows him through a day in the studio, documentary style, as he develops a fully realized charcoal drawing (using the same model as in the iPad painting, if I’m not mistaken). There is a trailer for the video here.
[Via Daring Fireball]