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Using a pen display

Using a pen display provides you with in-depth training on Design. Taught by David Lee as part of th… Show More

SketchBook Pro 2010 Essential Training

with David Lee

Video: Using a pen display

Using a pen display provides you with in-depth training on Design. Taught by David Lee as part of the SketchBook Pro 2010 Essential Training
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Using a pen display
Video Duration: 7m 10s 2h 28m Beginner


Using a pen display provides you with in-depth training on Design. Taught by David Lee as part of the SketchBook Pro 2010 Essential Training

View Course Description

In SketchBook Pro 2010 Essential Training, David Lee shows how to use SketchBook Pro's powerful tools and unique marking menu interface to make digital drawing and painting a natural experience. This course covers setting application preferences, selecting brushes, picking colors, choosing the right drawing tools for each project, and working with pen tablet and pen display devices. Exercise files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Exploring the user interface lagoon
  • Customizing brush settings
  • Creating a texture brush
  • Refining a sketch with blur, smear and sharpen tools
  • Creating illustrations with layers
  • Using the Symmetry tool to mirror drawings across the X or Y axis
  • Using the ruler tool to draw and position precise straight lines
  • Using the Ellipse tool to draw and position precise circles, ellipses, and curves.
  • Saving projects
SketchBook Pro Wacom

Using a pen display

In this lesson I'll show you how to draw using a pen display. The pen display is one type of input device for working with SketchBook Pro. I am working on the Cintiq, which is available from Working on a pen display is similar to a tablet PC. Except that pen displays need to be connected to a separate computer. If you do decide to draw on a pen display I recommend purchasing a new dedicated computer. So we can work with the most recent operating systems and with Internet access for future SketchBook Pro downloads and updates. One of the first things you'll notice is the size.

There are smaller more compact pen displays. However working on a larger scale lends itself to achieving greater detail. Larger scale requires minimal zooming while you draw. Before using your pen display please carefully follow the install procedures. You may also need to calibrate your pen stylus and adjust Preference settings found in your Device Manager. To make drawing on a pen display a comfortable and natural feeling experience let me show you some adjustments. There are two major adjustment paddles located at the mounting base of your pen display.

The paddle on the left lowers the angle for display. This is handy if you prefer working on the top of your drawings. The lever on the right raises the angle of your display. Raising allows you to work in an upright easel like fashion. As I grab the sides in the corners of display notice that it tilts, very much like a drawing pad or an animator's wheel. The pen display overhangs most desks enough to provide almost 180 degrees of rotation, perfect for sketching detail and perspective of difficult to draw curves in geometry.

On each side of the pen display are hotkeys. Hotkeys provide customization of frequently used tools and image controls. Please reference the main menu tabs of your device to properly save your own personal settings. Let's have a look at the pen display. What I have here on sisplay is a drawing template. You can find those on your Autodesk design community website. I'll go ahead and go to my Brush tools and open that and select the Pencil. I'll also select the color blue.

And the reason why I'm using blue is that it'll allow us to see our line drawing above our template. I'll also open our Layer Editor so we can keep track of what is locked, which is our background layer, and also what is active, which is highlighted in red. To begin a sketch what I am going to be doing is I am going to be creating an environment. I'll be drawing the interior of a room, so to begin I am going to go ahead and press down on the Shift key on my keyboard. I'm going to establish the horizon line. And this will give me some idea of the interior space.

Next, what I am going to do is using the guidelines I am going to draw a line right on top of the display, almost like tracing a line to establish my floor lines. Next, I'll draw a profile or a footprint of where my furnishings will be in the room. Then what I'll do is establish the height of each of the furnishings. And I'll use the guidelines from the template below on the first layer to create my drawing, again growing each element from the bottom.

I'll mark approximately where they are going to meet. And then I'll add details such as the bottom of the cabinet, perhaps legs of the cabinet. And I'll probably add a shape. I'll put a little vanity stool. What I am doing right now is drawing through and this allows me to properly align all of the elements of my drawing.

In some cases a drawing gets a little busy. You can always grab your Eraser tool. I'll go ahead and turn on my Resize Brush tool, keep it nearby. And I'll erase out some of these guidelines because my objects are now defined. However, I'll still keep my alignment details to the floor so I'll know how to properly locate the legs and details. I'll go back and activate my Brush. I'll move my Layer Editor over to the one side and I'll find the center of this wall. By crossing an X and locating that I'll go ahead and reset what I don't need.

And this will be the location of a mirror. I'll use my guidelines from the template below. I'll go ahead while I am up here, establish a ceiling, the back wall. I'll move my Editor down. See how useful having a template in the background is? Then what I'll do next is go ahead and erase out some of these guidelines so that I can start to think a little bit about detail.

I can grab my Marquee Selector or actually my Lasso Selector. Lasso select an object, which is this mirror frame. I'll copy. I'll paste it. I'll use my Move and Zoom key to position it and scale it down so I can create the frame for my mirror. I'll deselect that. And then what I will do is I'll use my Move and Zoom tool to get a little closer to establish a center of my cabinet. I'll put a sink bowl.

I'll draw a little faucet and handles. And I'll go ahead and erase that what I don't see. And I'll now complete the drawing. I'll go ahead and put a countertop. I'll zoom back out. I'll add some cabinet doors, perhaps a drawer.

And I'll finish up by erasing all the other lines that I don't need. And what's the last detail to do is create some legs for my vanity stool. I'll go ahead and put two arches, some support rods. And erase that all of the support and all the guidelines, which will allow the vanity bench to stand proud. We enclose our Layer Editor. Our basic drawing is complete.

Sketching using the pen display is another way to use SketchBook Pro. I encourage you to practice and develop your skills on this device. SketchBook Pro offers drawing tools enabling beginners, experienced artists and designers the ability to create highly precise illustrations.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about SketchBook Pro 2010 Essential Training .

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Q: The grid files the author uses in the course aren't included in the exercise files. Where can I find them?
A: The grid files are background template files that are provided with an Autodesk subscription, which comes with purchase of any Autodesk product, including Sketchbook Pro. To sign up for a subscription, visit and click Create an Account. You'll be prompted to enter your software license number, so make sure to have that handy.





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