I’ve already seen the hashtag #nophotoshop popping up on my social networking feeds, with tattooers drawing a line in the sand between traditional drawing techniques and computer aided drawing. In the right hands it can be a valuable tool; Thomas Hooper used Photoshop to quickly lay out the mandala design he put on my fingers, Guy Aitchison and his ‘bio-mech collective’ participants make use of Wacom tablets and 3D modeling for laying out complicated drawings and light sources. In the wrong hands it can turn tattooing into graphic design and breed a generation of tattooists who know more about fonts and kerning than they do hand lettering.
It’s potential for abuse shouldn’t automatically mean it’s bad. Time will tell.
That has absolutely nothing to do with this 3D model of a Mike Wilson painting by his old co-worker John Himmelstein. John has been interested in computer animation/drawing since the 1990s and is bridging the gap between 2D illustration and fully three dimensional models. As 3D printing becomes more affordable, ‘studies’ like this could help artists with more realistic drawings and light sources.
It’s also pretty damn cool.
(Personal anecdote: John drew the original design for my Wilson backpiece. Mike was having a hard time conceptualizing what I wanted, so John did a quick sketch to help lay everything out. The two worked together in the early 1990s in Daytona Beach.)