Did you ever think that it would be a good idea to create little drawings or paintings on your cell phone? Neither did I; that is, until I started playing around with Infinite Painter, a free (ad supported) painting app for Android, who which does an excellent job in simulating a wide range of mediums and brushes, and remarkable true-to-life blending of colors.
This is not a perfect app in many ways (see cons section below), but what it has going for it is this: it is surprisingly fun to use; and after installing and playing with it for a few days, I found that I started to actually like the paintings that I was able to make (enough to share them publicly on this blog; see screenshots).
Version tested: at the outset, I need to state that I used the Galaxy Note version of this software, which offers support for that device’s stylus and bigger screen. You can find links to this version as well as the regular version at the end of the post below.
This program is very much a ‘cell phone’ painting app designed for finger (or stylus) on the screen painting. You will not find many of the of the tools in graphic editing software on the desktop (e.g. shape tools like rectangles or ovals, flood fill, selection tools, etc.), and the app is all the better for it. Although it does provide ‘symmetry’ tools as well as layers support.
This in excellent program. It is also flawed in many ways. Below is a list of PROS and CONS:
Realistic brushes and mediums: specifically, the blending of the colors when using a brush, is divine. It’s not that you get the ‘sense’ that you are using a brush and paints, it’s that the effect looks and feels pretty darn amazing. There are many mediums and brushes to choose from (see screenshot to the right), although I only use one which I like best. It even offers pressure sensitivity on Galaxy note.
The results are quite nice: it is fun to paint with Infinite Painter, and when you’re having fun, the results tend to be good as well (funny how that works).
Attempt at a streamlined interface: specifically, to touch one of the four circles that are on the bottom and drag outwards, which can be used to quickly change the size of your brush (as in the example below) or select variations on the current color, etc. I say ‘attempt’ because aside from this part, the overall interface is not very good (see cons section below).
Crashes: specifically, a frequently occurring crash that adds insult to injury by losing unsaved work most of the time. I lost many a nice drawing/painting as a consequence of this (but somehow still kept coming back for more).
The interface is crazy and annoying: specifically, dealing with layers, saving and loading projects, or anything that is not done via the four circles in the main display, is very hard and annoying. I still have no idea how to work with layers in any rudimentary way, despite trying.
The color wheel is difficult to use: and has to be one of the worst implementations of a color palette ever.
The undo function is sometimes unresponsive: at least on the first click. Also, it should really be pushed out into the main display, rather than be hidden in an inner menu.
Here’s a video of Infinite Painter in action:
The verdict: I love this program. I really hope it gets better (specifically, that the crashes are dealt with, and some of the functions buried in the interface made easier and more streamlined (e.g. layers, project loading and saving etc.)
If you have an artist within you then take my advice: just put this little free app on your phone and play with it. It may prove surprisingly more engaging that you may at first think.
[Thanks go to reader Panzer for the tip about this software].