Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Advance Review of Living Sketchbook, Vol. 1

Brad Teare of the blog Thick Paint had a chance to test out the Living Sketchbook™ app, and he wrote a review of it:

"Imagine being invited to your favorite artist's studio and getting a chance to thumb through his or her sketchbook. That's how I felt when I previewed James Gurney's new sketchbook app Boyhood Home.

"I'm super busy right now–I'm preparing for a major landscape show–and I initially thought I would quickly thumb through the images, perhaps delve into a few I found intriguing and get back to work. However, after experiencing a couple pages of Boyhood Home, I was hooked and retired to my overstuffed chair to linger over each page.

"Surprisingly, the digital sketchbook experience actually was as intriguing as thumbing through a favorite artist's sketchbook. It's a different experience, of course, but has unique advantages.

"The book is divided into three modes: the sketches, which you can zoom into, a video with voice over, and often an additional video feature, like a digital sidebar. The videos are about one to two minutes long and for my taste about right, allowing Gurney to share tips while not slowing down the experience. As you can see in the screen grab above you tap the icons in the upper right depending on which feature you want. Tap the image and the interface fades away. The "i" button gives you information regarding the medium and subject matter–which in one case informed me about a sketching device known as a white gel pen–which I immediately noted for addition to my plein air kit.

"The sketchbook is 25 pages long and includes a page showing Gurney's tools and media (primarily gouache and casein). Be sure to use the pinch and zoom feature on all the images as it allows you to see incredibly close detail. The zoom feature alone makes this well worth the $5 price, but the fusion of video, voice over, and images makes this as close to actually being in a cafe with Gurney, discussing how he created each sketch. The first volume of the Living Sketchbook app will be available March 20 for $4.99 for both iOS and Android phones and tablets.

"For the tips and inspiration alone I eagerly look forward to more sketchbooks."
Living Sketchbook, Vol. 1: Boyhood Home is the first in a series of sketchbook apps. It is now available for iOS on Apple phones and tablets at the App Store, and for Android devices at Google Play
Thanks, Brad Teare. Check out his blog "Thick Paint."
App coding and development by Dan Gurney.


sketcher said...

I don't have a tablet or Android phone. Can I view this on a lap top computer?

thank you

Robert said...

Looks incredible James. Great idea. I remember asking you a while ago what you intended to do with your sketchbooks and whether you were going to sell them, and you weren't really sure at the time, but you really came up with a great idea since then. I won't be surprised if other artists follow in your footsteps with this. Congratulations.

Linda Navroth said...

Any chance this can be made to work on computers as well? I can't afford to buy a new phone to be able to view it!

Robert said...

Linda Navroth, I coincidentally just bought an At&t Alcatel Android phone for $20 on sale at Best buy. I think it's only about $30 regularly. I don't use it as a phone, just as a device for apps.

Linda Navroth said...

Robert--sorry for being a tech dunce, but does that 'prepaid' mean you have access to AT & T wireless via a wifi connection?

Robert said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Robert said...

Linda, I never signed up with at&t to connect the phone to a phone plan, but I do have a wireless wifi router to connect it to. I just use it as a small tablet computer.