Great graphics tablets for designers and artists

Designers can work faster and more accurately with a graphics tablet while artists can explore a new world of creativity. But which WACOM is right for you?

11 Jul 2017

Not to be confused with the iPad, a graphics tablet is a tool used by artists and designers. They connect to your laptop and come with a digital pen so what you draw on the tablet appears on your screen.


Get the best from Adobe

The best-known graphics tablets are made by WACOM. They’re designed to work with Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator for professional and enthusiast designers and photographers. Plus, painters and those who love sketching and drawing are catered for too – with software like Corel PaintShop and CorelDraw.


How do they work?

WACOM tablets come in different sizes with varying levels of spec and software to suit certain types of art, but generally they’re a flat, almost book-like device that you connect to your Windows or Apple Mac computer.

It sits flat on your desk or work surface and connects to your laptop using your USB socket or wirelessly through Bluetooth. They come with a digital pen that you use to draw onto the tablet’s surface. What you draw then appears on your screen working with the software you’re running – provided it’s compatible.

The pens are designed to work the same for both left and right-handers.


What is pressure sensitivity?

One of the most important features is the pen’s pressure sensitivity. This is measured in number – the higher the better.

Sensitivity, put simply, affects whether you’re creating fine lines or thick ones, and how much difference there is in between. And programs like Photoshop and Illustrator are built to get the best from it.

Which WACOM is right for you?


The professional or student designer

In a nutshell: You’re working in Adobe Illustrator day in/day out whether at uni or in a home studio.

Professional fashion and graphic designers demand tools that help them to work with speed and accuracy and to get the best from industry standard software.


And that’s why WACOM tablets are loved in the creative industries. They’re ‘much more precise than the pen tool in all programs,’ one professional designer told us.

‘They are really good for cut-outs… and much, much quicker than a mouse. You can also set the buttons on the pen for whatever you want them for, like right click or double-click.’ She works in Photoshop, InDesign and Illustrator. Designer

With the Intuos Pro you can:

  • Work with pens, brushes and markers - the pressure, angle and rotation of your pen is recognised
  • Control line width and opacity with precision thanks to high pressure sensitivity of 2048
  • Get more from Adobe Illustrator – tools like Paintbrush and Blob Brush have pressure-sensitive features built in
  • Get more from Photoshop control lightness, darkness and opacity when using the Brush tool
  • Save time with Express Keys – 8 buttons on your WACOM tablet you can program for regular keyboard shortcuts for Photoshop or Illustrator
  • Use your fingers to zoom or scroll by setting up gestures on touch-enabled drawing surface


The artist

In a nutshell:

You’re a painter, and you want a digital experience that feels just like your brushes in oil and acrylic

You call yourself an artist. You may be a semi-professional painter, or a weekend watercolourist. Either way, painting is – and always has been – a part of you.

You describe yourself as an artist even though that may not be what you do for a living. Painting is – and always has been – a part of you.

You love nothing more than getting out your brushes and oils but the hustle-bustle of modern life means you don’t always have the time. Transform your laptop into a mobile art studio with an Intuos Art tablet.

Intuos Art pen

With it you can: 

  • Switch between brushes, pencil and markers with the versatile pen (1024 sensitivity)
  • Paint oils and watercolours with Corel Painter Essentials 5 software
  • Be creative with the large 10-inch surface
  • Easily undo mistakes and carry out other common keyboard shortcuts directly from the tablet with 4 Express Keys
  • Use your fingers to zoom or scroll by setting up gestures on touch-enabled drawing surface
  • Explore new techniques with access to online tutorials 


The eternal doodler

In a nutshell: You’re into painting and drawing as a hobby and you want to make your designs digital
You’ve been drawing for as long as you can remember. From childhood scribbles at the kitchen table to more accomplished work for GCSE art and beyond.

You’ve always stuck to pencil and paper but you’re restless to try something new. Open new doors with an entry-level tablet like the Intuos Draw. It was designed specifically for drawing.Intuos graphics tablet

With it you can:

  • Start digital drawing for less than £55
  • Draw right out of the box with built-in Autodesk SketchBook studio
  • Go from delicate lines to heavy shading with precision (pen sensitivity 1024)
  • Work on the go – the 7-inch tablet can be easily slipped into your bag with your laptop 
  • Undo mistakes directly with the tap of a button by programming the 4 Express Keys with common shortcuts
  • Learn new tricks with access to online training and tutorials 

From Apple to Windows 10 - find your perfect laptop to go with your WACOM

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