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Drawing Tools for Animating:

By Steven Mussey, M.D.
When animating with a computer, you have several options:

1. Draw the picture on paper, scan it, clean up and color the image on the computer.
Good for folks who still prefer the feel of paper.
Post-production work needed.
Not as smooth as drawing straight into the animation program.

2. Draw the picture using a standard Wacom Tablet attached to a computer.

Wacom tablets offer quality pen on “paper” experiences.
Unless you opt for an expensive Cintiq, you must learn to draw with your hand in one
spot while the drawing appears in a different spot.
Not very portable.
Ties you to a desk.

3. Buy a Windows Tablet PC.

Highly portable.
You can draw and watch your image in the same place.
You can draw anywhere.
Can be expensive.
Hardware choices confusing.

So, what about buying a Windows Tablet PC? This is NOT the same as an iPad or Android Tablet. This is actually a laptop computer running Windows 7 and using a convertible screen that is also a Wacom Drawing Tablet.

As of September 2011, this is the list of current tablet pc’s to consider:

Tablet PC’s with Intel Integrated Graphics:
Fujitsu Lifebook T731
HP EliteBook 2760P
Lenovo ThinkPad X220 Tablet

Tablet PC with additional Graphics co-Processor:
Fujitsu Lifebook T901

In a later post, I will review the Fujitsu T901 as an animation platform.

Hint: I really like it!

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