Maybe Photoshop Can Really Work On The iPad

Many photographers already use a tablet like the Wacom Intuos to work in Photoshop. You would think that an iPad would be even better because you can touch the very screen that you work is on but it's not that simple. Due to a number of issues like lack of pressure control and the fact that your hand itself will "select" parts of the screen, the iPad never took off as a professional tool. That is until I saw this video.

Brian Yap is a professional illustrator and by using Adobe Ideas for the iPad and a Nomad Compose Stylus, he makes illustrating on the iPad look easy. If Apple eventually decides to create a stylus that can compute pressure, the iPad could be a game changer in the photo retouching field.

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20 Comments

Jason Zeis's picture

"You would think that an iPad would be even better because you can touch the very screen that you work is on but it’s not that simple."  You forgot a comma!

Anthony Sulser's picture

Is this necessary?

Elliott Montello's picture

Yeah but there are always pros who can make anything look good no matter what they are using I mean check this guy paint a picture perfect Mona Lisa in Microsoft Paint its amazing. https://youtu.be/uk2sPl_Z7ZU

I dare say this takes a little less skill than painting by freehand using MS Paint. He was tracing a lot of his work (not to take away from the skill he has, but you get my point).

I'm sure I couldn't reproduce what was done here, but I could get a damned sight closer using the iPad and Adobe Ideas than MS Paint!

and the first time the iPad crashed and you lost all your work, you'd be the first to throw it under the bus. Literally. Pressure sensitivity and auto-save. Then perhaps it would be worth considering.

JimmySchaefer's picture

No kidding right, you would have to know 100% sure that IOS would not crash and trust me, seems to crash on the simplest things like loading Facebook.

The Facebook crashing you mention is caused by the Facebook app and its issues, not the iPad or iOS. 

Some things have an autosave feature built into them. Again, it's all about the app.

Your concerns are valid, but your'e both putting the onus on the wrong entity.

You're right. The facebook app is abysmal. Even using Safari and facebook will cause Safari to crash. But I have seen a LOT of crashes on my iPad. A lot. I would never trust anything but the most casual use of Photoshop on an iPad.

Another reason why people need to get off the idea that Apple is something special. Could just get an Asus Slate and have Wacom pressure sensitivity out of the box. Not to mention its been out for years.. 

I can't agree more I have a slate ep121 and love using it for PS zbrush and lightroom. It's also great to bring on location for wireless transfer not to mention it's only a little bit more than a top of the line ipad with twice as much power and speed with a full os inside.

Peter Kremzar's picture

Actually. Microsoft Surface tablet that was introduced recently offers much more than Apple iPad. While iPad is more or less a consumer and entertaining device, the Microsoft Surface is a true computer made for professionals with a true operating system not just a phone OS like iPad.

First. Stylus.
We all know that you can’t do any serious photo retouch with your fingers. Many retouchers only use Wacom tablets for that purpose. Well. You can buy a stylus for iPad but it’s use is very awkward. You can’t touch the tablet surface with your hand or fingers while drawing. On the other hand Microsoft Surface has a stylus with the proximity sensor integrated. The proximity sensor that the Surface has switches off the Touch functionality as soon as it detects the pen is close to the tablet surface. From that moment the Surface behaves just like a Wacom tablet. And this way you get a cheap Wacom Cintiq tablet worth at least US$1200 but at the same time it offers you much more than just being a tablet.

Second. Color management
It is essential for the photographers to have the correct colors through all the process. Currently Windows 8 is the only widely used tablet OS with the color management integrated. I know that DataColor Spyder 4 Elite offers you some kind calibration when your iPad is attached to your Mac. But again this type of calibration really looks awkward to me and the results are quite questionable. And are you willing to buy another calibrator for your iPad just because you already had X-Rite calibrator before?

Third. Windows 8 Pro is a true OS (operating system).
It is not derived from a phone OS like iOS or Android. As such it runs several applications that we already use on our notebooks or desktop machines like Adobe Lightroom, Adobe Photoshop and others. You can’t run these on an iPad or an Android tablet.

Nice expansion on what I was mentioning. May have to look into that also; have been waiting around to see if a new Slate pops sometime soon.

Also, it's hard to tell but it sounded like you thought the Slate was an Android tablet; like the other Asus tablets such as the Transformer. The Slate is fully Windows and comes with a Wacom digitizer stylus. From memory (quite possibly off) the slate had around half the level of pressure sensitivity as an Intuos tablet. Possibly lower though.

the  slate and the samsung series seven have great pressure 
sensitivity the only thing i recommend is getting a new pen they have to be the wacom penable pens. the default one is not so good. 

The digitizer pen that ships with the Asus slate is about 256 levels of pressure sensitivity though you can buy one that gives 512 levels of pressure sensitivity as well as a programmable rocker button. The Intuos3 line gave over 1,000 levels of pressure sensitivity but the Intuos4 and 5 double that.

While the video is impressive in its own right, I'm still pretty skeptical of what an ipad can offer a professional photographer or retoucher in terms of post production. Because of Apple's OS, we still can't run Photoshop proper on it so we're relegated to far more basic controls that, with skill and patience, can still give good results. But a professional work horse like Photoshop CS(#), offers several far more effective tools giving a more effecient workflow.

Technology is always advancing though and I wont be suprised if there is ever an ipad that can run the latest version of Photoshop or some equivalent program.

Peter Kremzar's picture

I'm sorry for my mistake. I didn't mean to reply to you directly but when I pressed Post button I noticed it was too late.

The text I wrote was actually from my blog post that I wrote a while ago ;)

Awesome ... wow 

If someone plans to do that then better wait for the Samsung 10.1 Note Tablet or take a look at the Lenovo. It's much closer to a wacom tablet with it's true digitizer than the "normal" tablets.

Zachary Price's picture

I'm just glad that you guys told us what stylus he was using.  As I was watching this, I wondered which one it was and assumed I'd have to Google a few images before finding it because nobody ever puts out the info.  Thanks FS's!

personally i've been waiting for this for quite some time... http://tenonedesign.com/bluetiger.php

Samsung 10.1 Note uses also Wacom technology.