11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
A classic piece of software for artists and illustrators,
This review is from: Corel Painter 12 (PC/Mac) (DVD-ROM)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)I've been using Painter since version 1, and in those days it came in an actual paint tin. It's always been quite a quirky tool, aimed squarely at artists and illustrators who were already pretty competent in their respective crafts.
Painter will not make you in to a digital artist - you need to know your medium already, or be prepared to learn its digital equivalent. Although Painter has hundreds of brushes, you will in reality only use a few depending on if you're a watercolour, acrylic, gouache or spray paint artist - or oil, crayon, pastel, you name it. The temptation is to try out every brush but you really need to stick within what you know. Which isn't to say you can't experiment. I tend to use acrylics and sprays with pencils, but the style that comes out is similar to what I'd do with "real" paints.
Painter comes in a hardback book which serves as both a manual and a showcase of other artists' work. These provide some idea of what the software can help you to do but as I hinted above, you have to bring the talent. This isn't Photoshop where a lot of the legwork is done for you and you simply need to know how to use the different filters. With Painter you are the artist, the software is just your tool. Learning to use Painter well takes a LOT of practice and patience but the program is very good at faithfully reproducing the quirks of each medium. It's quite spooky actually.
Having said that, Painter works well with other tools like Photoshop, which is a far cry from the early days. Layers, filters, lots of export options and, one of my favourite features, automatic recording of your strokes. This has lots of practical uses, I'm sure, but if you grew up with Paint With Nancy or Tony Hart then you'll probably get a kick out of pressing play and watching your painting appear stroke by stroke on the screen :)
One more thing: you need a graphics tablet. Don't even think of using a mouse with this. I have a small Wacom tablet WACOM Graphic tablet - Bamboo Pen Graphics Tablet which is fine for the sort of stuff I do, but you might want to invest in something bigger (if you've never used a tablet before, give it time and before long you'll wonder how you coped without one). Avoid any tablets that aren't pressure sensitive.