Archive for December, 2009


painting with the iPhone

December 12, 2009

Who has an iPhone?  Have you discovered the joys of the ‘Brushes’ painting app?  There are some very basic free painting apps for the iPhone, but its worth paying the £2.99 for this app.  Here is a link to it. It comes well recommended.  David Hockney, never shy about using technology as a tool for his art (photocopying, digital photography), has been experimenting with painting using this application on the iPhone.


First sketch of men at a bar



Simple drawing using the free app


Since I am inseparable from my new ‘toy’ I thought it would be wonderful to be able to use my phone to sketch with, since it would save me having to remember to kit up with a sketchbook when I’m out walking (though, she hastens to add, of course nothing can ever replace the feel of pen and paper).  I started with a free painting app and the drawings I did are here… but I soon opted to pay for Brushes.

Brushes is simply fantastic.  Its like using Photoshop, only EASY. Its got the most important features for a painter: different brush sizes, different textures, including some choice of patterns, a huge range of colours, all from very transparent to solid, and with a great tonal range.  There’s a rubber, there are layers, but most of all, it is so quick and easy to use.


First go at painting with Brushes



doodling with Brushes



Christmas tree with pattern tool



sketched on a walk, finished at home


I am still a novice, but so far have sketched trees out on a walk with my dog, sketched men drinking while sitting in the corner of a pub, and overlaid paint strokes on top of a photo of the corner of a room.


paint overlaid on photo of sitting room corner


Interestingly, rather than feeling as though I was cheating by overlaying photos, I felt this was a great way to examine tonal ranges in flesh colours, by using the dropper tool to get the photo to help me select the right flesh colour.  So good for learning about colour and tone as well!  I really suggest you explore this option if you are into painting and have an i-phone.


Abstracted from a photo


Here’s a movie showing the stages of development of a drawing that I did this morning in about 15-20 minutes.