I'm creating this post because a lot of parents ask me what their child needs to get started with Digital Art. What do I recommend?
There are basically 2 routes: iPad vs NOT iPad.
Option 1: iPad
Using the iPad is one of the most popular options with kids nowadays. It's multifunctional, easy to use, and very popular. Kids like to fit in and having an Apple product is kind of cool. That being said, you are paying a premium for this premium product.
You will need 3 items.
1) iPad ($300-$1000+)
2) Apple Pencil ($100-$200)
3) Software - Procreate ($10)
There are lots of different tiers and generations of the product. Not every iPad works with the Apple Pencil which is paramount to digital art. This website goes over the minimum requirements if you want to go this route:
What iPads Are Compatible With the Apple Pencil?
Option 2: Computer Route (Not iPad)
This route is more aligned with what industry professionals use. It is a bit cheaper but more complicated.
You will only need 2 items + your computer.
1) Digital art tablet ($50-$1500)
2) Software ($10-$50)
The digital art tablet has a large range of prices. There are two factors contributing to this...
Brand name and touch screen.
The dominant brand name in this space is Wacom - a Japanese brand. Their leading competitor - Huion - is a Chinese brand and sells their product about 5x cheaper than Wacom. While I personally have not used Huion products before, I have a lot of friends who have used them, and they said that their product is just as good and a fantastic value. I think it's fairly safe to use Huion.
The other factor is LCD touch screen. Most drawing tablets consist of a touch sensitive surface where you draw on the tablet while staring up at the computer monitor. Most students have a tough time adjusting to this because the hand-eye coordination is more difficult. The difference in price for having a LCD touch screen is about 5x. But if you are going to buy an LCD touch screen, it's not that much expensive to buy an iPad + Apple Pencil.
If you want to go this route, here are two options that seem pretty decent.
No LCD touch screen ($50)
HUION H610 Pro V2 Graphic Drawing Tablet
With LCD touch screen ($300)
HUION Kamvas 13 Android Support Graphics Drawing Tablet
I personally just use the one without a screen, and I'll use my monitor for look at what I'm doing. This is a bit less intuitive and requires more training.
For software, I personally use Photoshop. Right now it is $20/ month - which can be a bit pricey. Other options include... CLIP STUDIO PAINT ($50), IbisPaint (Free), Krita (Free)
This is my digital painting class. Digital Painting: Drawing People and Landscapes
It is an intermediate class. I recommend you practice a bit first or look at youtube videos before you enroll.
Hope this helps!
- Mr. Chris