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Wacom tablets are a popular alternative to the mouse for painting, drawing, and navigating your computer in a more natural position. In this course, artist and teacher John Derry shows how to get up and running with a variety of Wacom tablets (Intuos, Cintiq, and more), covering everything from setup to stylus selection. He then shows how to speed up your workflow and enhance your command of the drawing surface with ExpressKeys, the Touch Ring, and other controls. Plus, learn about tablet ergonomics—which makes your Wacom even more compatible with your working conditions—and follow a few exercises to warm up your drawing arm.
When using a pen and tablet, there are times when it may be desirable to refine your hand motion. In the real world, threading a needle is just such an activity. Unfortunately, there is no magic to assist in manual dexterity. But the Wacom driver does offer such a magic bullet for fine motor skilled drawing activities for extremely detailed work, Precision mode. Essentially, the Wacom Tablet surface is mapped to the size of the screen. In Precision mode, the surface area of the tablet is remapped to a smaller subsection of the screen for more precise work.
Let's begin by taking a look at the surface of our Wacom Tablet here, and you may notice that there are these four little corner markers that indicate exactly the area that is a live area that you can actually paint and draw in, and these four corner markers in this area are mapped exactly to your screen. So, whatever happens on the tablet is mirrored on the screen. And in fact I can show you this, I'm going to draw a line here from the lower right corner, and I'm just going to go up to the upper left corner, and you can see that by drawing across the complete diagonal of our tablet, we now have a complete diagonal on the screen.
Now, let's go into Precision mode, and by default, you can get to Precision mode by going to the third key down, your ExpressKey, and when I press this, this puts me into Precision mode. I'm going to position this so that we're going to be right in the center of the screen here, and now I'm going to draw a line, same length, this time from the lower left to the upper right, and you can see how much smaller that surface area is indicated on the screen.
So Precision Mode squeezes the size of this tablet down into your screen for more precise work. you can also even get more precise, and to show you that, I'm going to go to the Wacom Preferences, and if we go down here to our Settings to Precision Mode, I'm going to take this all the way down to Precision Mode and if you select it, it calls up this slide,r and this slider allows me to essentially adjust the size of that box, which is reflecting the degree of precision you're going to get by changing the active area on the screen.
So, let's take this to its ultra fine mode, we'll say OK. Let's go back to Photoshop, and once again I'm going to draw another line here by going into Precision Mode, and I'm going to draw the same line again, same diagonal from the lower left to the upper right. And you can see that that line is now even smaller. You aren't likely to stay in Precision mode for long, but when you need it, it really helps threading the digital needle for precise pen and brush work.
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