Showing posts with label drawing tools. Show all posts
Showing posts with label drawing tools. Show all posts

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Why Have Students Make Simple Animations?

Last week I wrote about having middle school students create presentations from a combination of illustrations and videos that they made. In that post I shared Brush Ninja animation tool. That's just one of many tools that students could have used to animated GIFs to include in their slides. The point of the activity wasn't to have students learn how to use Brush Ninja, it was to have students create animations to demonstrate their understanding of a process.

In the example that I shared last week students made animations to illustrate forms of energy. That topic was a fairly natural fit to illustrate with animations. But animations can be used to illustrate nearly every topic that is taught in K-12 schools. I was turned onto this idea many years ago when I read Dan Roam's Back of the Napkin and Unfolding the Napkin books. These books make the point that if you truly understand a concept, you can illustrate it with simple drawings on the back of a napkin or other blank canvas.

You don't need to be artistically inclined at all in order to make effective illustrations. In fact, in Unfolding the Napkin I learned that simple stick figures were often all that is needed to illustrate a concept. And if you do use the concepts of Unfolding the Napkin in your classroom, you will have to remind some students to focus on the concepts first before getting hung up on the aesthetics of their sketches.

Watch the following video in which Dan Roam explains the concepts of Unfolding the Napkin.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Get Creative With These Free Drawing Tools

Feeling the urge to paint or draw, but don't have access to pens, pencils, or paint at the moment? These free creativity apps can be used anywhere.

Infinite Painter Sketch, paint, and draw using over 80 brushes. You can also turn your photos into paintings. Liquify tool allows you to move, bloat, pinch, swirl, and ripple. Export your creations in several popular formats and share directly to Instagram.

Sketch Draw and Paint features a wide variety of brushes and tools. You can create a drawing or painting from scratch of upload a picture and enhance it with text or stickers. You can use the collaboration feature to create images with other people. You can crop, zoom, scale, rotate, flip, pan, and zoom with this app. Connect with other artists in the community.

Tayasui Sketches features a wide variety of tools including pencils, brush pen, oil pastel, and felt pens. These tools are realistic and the toolbar disappears while you draw. Zoom in on your drawing to see the smallest details.

PaperOne: Paint Draw Sketchbook is an app that allows you to paint and draw on your phone. Begin a drawing on a blank canvas or start with a photo.

ArtFlow: Paint Draw Sketchbook features over 80 brushes including the ability smudge and add a gradient fill. Pens are pressure sensitive and the app features a high resolution canvas. You can begin with a blank canvas or upload an image to draw on.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Skitch 2.0 - Available For All iOS Devices and More

Skitch is one of my favorite drawing and image annotation apps for iPad and Android. Many people love using it on the Macs too. Today, Evernote (owners of Skitch) announced that now Skitch is available for iPhone and iPod touch.

In addition to the announcement that Skitch can now be used on all iOS devices, Evernote announced some other new features of Skitch 2.0. Now that Skitch is fully integrated into Evernote all of your Skitch projects are automatically synched to your Evernote account making your drawings available to you any time you connect to the web. Skitch 2.0 has a new tool for pixelating parts of an image.

Applications for Education
The pixelation feature could be obscuring faces in pictures that you post online. If you have pictures of classroom activities that you want to post on your blog but you don't want students' faces to be seen, use the pixelation tool to obscure them.

For more ideas on using Skitch as a teaching tool, check out Skitch as a Teaching Tool.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Interactive Illimitably - Collaborative Drawing

Interactive Illimitably is a free collaborative drawing tool that I learned about through a comment on my post of 11 collaborative drawing tools.  Interactive Illimitably provides a place for you to create a room with a custom name in which you can draw and chat with others. To get started just select a chat font style, name your room, and specify if you want your room to allow drawing, chatting or both. To have people join your drawing and chatting room, just give them the link assigned to your room. While there is a registration option, you don't need to register to use the site.

Applications for Education
Interactive Illimitably could be used by students to collaborate on the creation of story webs. Students could also use the service to collaborate on the creation of diagrams to use in presentations that they give to their classmates.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

11 Free Online Drawing Tools

As long as there has been a mouse connected to a computer there have been tools for making drawings on a computer. Here are five drawing tools that you might consider the next time you or your students need a free and easy drawing tool.

Sketchpad is a free, feature-rich, online drawing tablet that I recently came across in my stumbling around the Internet. Sketchpad offers users the ability to quickly create drawings. Sketchpad doesn't require you to create an account in order to create and save your drawings. All of the drawing tools that you would expect to find like brushes, pencils, and a large range of colors are offered by Sketchpad. Additionally, Sketchpad offers some unique tools for creating patterns, swatches, and blends of colors.

Art Pad and Sketch Pad (different from the Sketch Pad above) are both blank slate drawing utilities. Art Pad and Sketch Pad allow users to select from a variety of drawing tools and painting tools. Art Pad has a neat playback feature that shows you the steps you took in creating your images. Both Art Pad and Sketch Pad allow you to share your drawings via email or in a public gallery.

Graffiti Creator is best described not as a drawing tool, but a text editor. Users type select a font style, enter a word, then edit the look of the word to make it look like graffiti. This would be useful for students that are looking for a way to customize the font of words that they use in a slide show presentation.

Bomomo is an interesting drawing utility that creates images out of controlled chaos. Users select a drawing utility then the Bomomo program begins randomly drawing. Users can determine where the drawing starts with their computer's mouse. Users can also select general shapes and patterns to be drawn.

Crayola's online drawing canvas provides students with a blank canvas on which they can draw using virtual markers, crayons, pencils, and paints. Drawings cannot be saved online, but they can be printed. Pre-K Teachers looking for coloring pages can create their own or have students create their own using Crayola's Create & Color tool. Create & Color provides templates for creating custom coloring pages. You can pick a background template and modify it by adding speech bubbles and pictures. Coloring pages cannot be saved online, but they can be printed.

Odosketch is a free online sketchpad that, like many similar sites, provides a blank canvas on which you can create drawings from scratch. You can save your work to a free Odosketch account, share it online, or download it. Odosketch's niche appears to be creating drawings with "charcoal pencil" effects. Odosketch is well suited to use on touch screen computers and interactive whiteboards.

Draw It Live is a nice little website and Chrome Web App that I discovered in the Chrome Web Store. Draw It Live offers a free space for you to instantly create a collaborative whiteboard to use with anyone you like. To use Draw It Live just go to the site, click the "collaborative whiteboard" link, enter any nickname you want, then start drawing. You can invite people to draw with you by sending them the url assigned to your whiteboard. Draw It Live provides a chat box that you can use to talk to your collaborators about what each of you is doing on the screen. Draw It Live offers a Chrome Web App called Simple Whiteboard that can be used offline. Of course, when you're using it offline you cannot collaborate with anyone.

Coloring 4 All offers free printable coloring pages, online puzzles, and an online drawing board. The online drawing board can be used as a blank slate or children can select a picture to color. If puzzles are what you're after, Coloring 4 All offers customizable online jigsaw puzzles. To use the puzzles just select a picture then select the number of pieces you want the picture divided into. For the webmasters out there, Coloring 4 All makes many of their coloring pages and puzzles available for free re-use.

Draw Island is a free online tool for creating drawings and simple GIF animations. Draw Island offers you your choice of four canvas sizes on which you can draw. Draw Island offers two canvas sizes for creating simple GIF animations. To use Draw Island just head to the site and select a drawing tool. You can draw free hand (or should I say free mouse?) or select pre-defined shapes to use in your images. When you're done drawing just click the save button to download your drawing or animation.

FlockDraw is a simple service that allows people to quickly and easily collaborate on the creation of a drawing. To use FlockDraw simply visit the site, click the "start drawing" button, and start drawing. To invite other people to draw with you, just send them the url assigned to your drawing board. What's really neat is that anyone who visits the url after the drawing has started will see all of the drawing motions they missed unfold in front of them. In the future you will be able to embed your drawing board into your blog or website.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

GE Imagination Cubed - Online Collaborative Drawing

Update May 26, 2011 this resource appears to have gone offline.

General Electric's Imagination Cubed website provides a clear canvas on which you and your friends can draw and type. You can use the site as to start a drawing on your own and then invite others to join you in the drawing process. If you choose, you can enable the chat feature to talk about the drawing while you're drawing.

Imagination Cubed offers shapes and "stamps" that you can add to your drawings. You can also change the background color of your drawing and choose from a wide array of drawing colors. When you're done with your drawing you can save it to your local computer. Should you want to see how the drawing was developed, you can hit the replay button to watch every stroke of the drawing process.

Applications for Education
I've become a big fan of Dan Roam's Unfolding the Napkinmethods for demonstrating and solving problems. His basic idea is that if you can draw the problem you can solve the problem. A site like Imagination Cubed allows students to work together to develop a picture of a problem and then work together to picture the solutions.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Draw Island - Online Drawings and Animations

Draw Island is a new free online tool for creating drawings and simple GIF animations. Draw Island offers you your choice of four canvas sizes on which you can draw. Draw Island offers two canvas sizes for creating simple GIF animations. To use Draw Island just head to the site and select a drawing tool. You can draw free hand (or should I say free mouse?) or select pre-defined shapes to use in your images. When you're done drawing just click the save button to download your drawing or animation.

Applications for Education
Draw Island could be a good tool for students to create images for all kinds of digital presentations. Students could create a series of drawings to create a cartoon story. Students could use Draw Island to create sketches to demonstrate or outline a concept.

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