November 30, 2009

One thing leads to another; or why the plain brown socks aren't done.

A few weeks back I mentioned to Tina, a friend of mine and fellow knitter, that I really needed to find a different human-computer-interface device. Using a mouse for more than just a few minutes really makes my wrist hurt. I just knew Tina would have some insight, she makes her living doing creative things on a computer. Right off the bat she said "pen tablet" (or something along those lines). Hmmm, I hadn't thought of that.

I thought about it for a while, then did some online research so I'd know about pricing; and Wednesday decided to buy and try. What better time to break in a new to..., errr, device than over a holiday. I found a pretty basic but serviceable model, and as so often happens, there was additional software in the box. So I  scored a newer version of photoshop than what I'd been using, and painter essential 4 by Corel. ( I remember using CorelDraw years ago.)

Now, when I was a girl in grade school, one of my joys was paint by number kits. Anyone remember those? Do they still sell them? Well, this painter essential program is like a paint by numbers kit for my computer, but so much better. Mistakes are erased with a click, the paint can't spill or dry out and it doesn't make the room smell funny. I have an unlimited color palette and numerous brushes, pens, chalks and paper types to experiment with. And I have. And I can wholeheartedly report that using the pen tablet doesn't aggravate my wrist at all.

But discovering this meant I made almost no headway on the plain brown socks. The heals are turned and I working up the legs now, but I bet I'd be clear up at the ribbing by now, if not for playing with digital paints. And I thought I was just getting a mouse replacement!

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