The problem with Corel Painter…

Ever since I started Digital Painting the question of which piece of software to use has bugged me incessantly. A poor workman blames his tools and a good workman can produce good work with just about anything (or so they say) but personally I think if you’re going to spend loads of money on piece of software and loads of time using it then it’s in your best interests to make sure you pick the right one from the onset.

If I recall correctly when I first started digital art I was using Photoimpact 10, which was like a dumbed down version of photoshop. After a while I progressed to Photoshop elements 2.0, which was a dumbed down version of Photoshop, but perfect for learning the fundamentals. After I got my first graphics tablet and started painting digitally for real (rather than just colouring scanned line art) I ended up using Corel Painter 9.

Corel Painter had quite a few annoying bugs but as someone that had been working purely traditionally until not lot long before, the traditional media emulation was much friendlier than Photsohop’s daunting brush system. So I used Painter almost exclusively despite the irritating bugs. So when Painter 10 came out I was pretty excited and downloaded the trial version straightaway. I was dismayed to find it was even more buggy than painter 9! So I stuck with version 9 and had my fingers crossed when Painter 11 came out that it would be good. It wasn’t. The chaps at corel had managed to make it even more buggy! (in my experience of using it)

So I eventually got sick of Corel’s outdated and under-tested software and when Photoshop Cs5 came out boasting a new brush system I decided I had to try it. The whole Photoshop painting experience was just so much smoother than painter that I’ve been using it ever since. I’d pretty much given up on Painter.

And now Corel Painter 12 has just been released! I was sceptical that it would be very good, and that the bugs would be fixed. So I downloaded the trial and gave it a go…

…And it’s still riddled with a pox of bugs and performance issues. Nice brushes, but it’s just not worth the tradeoff for any professional. Stick to Photoshop, that’s what I say. At least until Corel decide to test their products properly.

I wanted it to be good. I really did! 🙁