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It's a draw

Today's computer can help you write letters, pay bills, or one of dozens of other tasks.  It also lets you be creative and have fun.  With your computer you can draw a picture, personalize your stationary, or design a flyer--even if you don't think you have any artistic ability or are computer savvy.

Easy invitations : use you home computer to create stylish stationary for weddings, birthdays, and other occasions
Patty Hoffman, Megan Eisen, and Josh Eisen.
Gloucester, Mass. : Quarry Books, 2005.
Easy Invitations presents stylish projects created using a home computer that are easy for beginners to achieve, yet sophisticated enough for professional designers. Includes paper and typeface selection advice, party planning tips and anecdotes, and an extensive Tools #38; Techniques chapter to ensure you are ready to design and print your own professional-looking invitations in no time. Book jacket.
     

Use your computer to create wedding invitations that will be more original (and maybe less expensive) than those you could purchase. Or, use the razzle dazzle of color and all sorts of fun graphics available on computer, to create signs for your garage sale.  It will be the sign that stands out--the one that gets people to your sale. Don't overlook the fun of getting the family together and using your computer and graphical software to draw a whimsical picture to go on the refrigerator.

Creating 3D game art for the iPhone with unity : featuring modo and Blender pipelines
by Wes McDermott.
Oxford : Focal, c2011.
Revolutionize your iPhone and iPad game development with Unity iOS, a fully integrated professional application and powerful game engine, which is quickly becoming the best solution for creating visually stunning games for Apple's iDevices easier, and more fun for artists. From concept to completion you'll learn to create and animate using modo and Blender as well as creating a full level utilizing the powerful toolset in Unity iOS as it specifically relates to iPhone and iPad game development. Follow the creation of "Tater," a character from the author's personal game project "Dead Bang," as he's used to explain vital aspects of game development and content creation for the iOS platform. Creating 3D Game Art for the iPhone focuses on the key principles of game design and development by covering in-depth, the iDevice hardware in conjunction with Unity iOS and how it relates to creating optimized game assets for the iDevices. Featuring Luxology's artist-friendly modo, and Blender, the free open-source 3D app, along side Unity iOS, optimize your game assets for the latest iDevices including iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPad and the iPod Touch. Learn to model characters and environment assets, texture, animate skinned characters and apply advanced lightmapping techniques using Beast in Unity iOS. In a clear, motivating, and entertaining style, Wes McDermott offers captivating 3D imagery, real-world observation, and valuable tips and tricks all in one place - this book is an invaluable resource for any digital artist working to create games for the iPhone and iPad using Unity iOS. * Circumvent the potential pitfalls of game development with professional techniques like "Static and Dynamic batching", "building models on the grid", "lightmapping with Beast", and "animation blending" to improve your game's performance and content creation workflow. * Visit www.wesmcdermott.com, to gain access to the book's official website where users can login to the resource portal to download extensive video walkthroughs and get information on the FREE iPhone/iPad app, "Tater's Training Trash Yard." The app showcases the core concepts and techniques covered in the book by demonstrating the content's performance on your iPhone or iPad.
     
AutoCAD 2011 essentials
Munir M. Hamad.
Sudbury, MA : Jones & Bartlett Learning, c2011.
AutoCAD® is the premier PC-based drafting tool that has been used by millions of engineers, draftsmen, project managers, and engineering students since its inception in 1982. AutoCAD 2011 Essentials, Comprehensive Edition provides new and seasoned users with simple step-by-step procedures on how to create, modify, annotate, and add dimension to any engineering drawing. Use the accompanying DVD to set up drawing exercises, view all of the book’s figures in full color, and draw with a trial version of AutoCAD 2011. Over 100 workshops throughout the book simulate a full real-world project from concept to completion, without overlooking any of the fundamental commands and functions of AutoCAD® 2011.Material added to the Comprehensive Edition:-Use all advanced 2D drafting commands-Know the most important advanced techniques-Create Dynamic Blocks-Create, Edit, Extract Block Attributes-Use External Reference for team collaboration-Know all about Sheet Sets-Know all about CAD Standards checking-Utilize the more advanced layer functions-Use Autodesk Design Review for Markups-Use the Markup Set Manager
     
AutoCAD 2011 essentials
Munir Hamad.
Sudbury, Mass. : Jones & Bartlett Learning, c2011.
Hamad, an Autodesk Approved Instructor and certified Autodesk AutoCAD Master, offers instruction for newcomers experienced users on AutoCAD 2011. It is intended to be used as a self-teaching instructional guide. Topics include drafting, setting up drawings, useful construction commands, working with blocks, hatching, text and tables, plotting and dimensioning drawings, inquiry commands, and template files. The guide is well-illustrated and includes a DVD-ROM. Annotation ©2010 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
     
Photoshop Elements 9
Barbara Brundage.
Farnham : O'Reilly, c2010.
Elements 9 offers much of Photoshop's power without the huge price tag. It's an ideal tool for most image-editing buffs -- including scrapbookers, photographers, and aspiring graphic artists. But Elements still doesn't come with a decent manual. This bestselling book will help you get the most out of the program, from the basics to advanced tips for both Windows and Mac. Quickly learn your way around. Customize Elements to suit your working style. Get to work right away. Import, organize, and make quick image fixes with ease. Retouch any image. Learn how to repair and restore your old and damaged photos. Add some pizzazz. Give images more zip with dozens of filters, frames, and special effects. Find your creative flair. Create scrapbooks, greeting cards, photo books, and more. Use advanced techniques. Work with layers, blend modes, and other tools. Try out your new skills. Download practice images and try new tricks as you learn.
     
The Web collection revealed : Adobe Flash CS4, Dreamweaver CS4, & Photoshop CS4
Sherry Bishop, Jim Shuman & Elizabeth Eisner Reding.
Clifton Park, NY : Delmar Cengage Learning, c2010.
With the release of AdobeÆs Creative Suite 4, the integration that Web developers and graphic designers had only dreamed about is now becoming a reality. The Web Collection Revealed Premium Edition is the first book on the market to feature Adobe Dreamweaver«, Adobe Flash«, and Adobe Photoshop« all together in the same text. Readers gain practical experience with the software as they work through end-of-chapter learning projects and step-by-step tutorials. An integration chapter demonstrates how to move from one application to the other while creating a Dreamweaver Web site that incorporates both Flash and Photoshop files. Full-color illustrations and a user-friendly design combine to create a solid learning experience that reveals how to master the latest features of these popular applications.
     
Blender studio projects : digital movie-making
Tony Mullen, Claudio Andaur.
Indianapolis, Ind. : Wiley Pub., c2010.
Learn how to get professional results from BlenderStart from scratch-the way it happens in the studio-and create fully rendered objects with Blender open-source 3D animation software and this real-world, roll-up-your-sleeves guide. No time is wasted-this book plunges straight into step-by-step instruction designed to help you build skills and create solid assets for film, video, and games.Blender is gaining clout in professional settings, and you can get a running start with this series of hands-on tutorials that encompasses multiple disciplines. The book includes a DVD with starter, intermediate, and final files, as well as movie files to help you every step of the way. Helps you harness Blender, the free, open-source alternative to commercial CG packages such as Maya and 3ds Max Presents projects that start from scratch and encompass multiple disciplines, thoroughly teaching you the Blender software Shows you how to use Blender attributes and tools for professional results Allows you to emerge with finished, renderable objects and assets for use in film, video, or games Includes a DVD with starter, intermediate, and final files, plus movie files for referenceThis unparalleled book contains everything you need to know to take your Blender skills to a new level.
     

Graphical programs are available for most computers with options of interest to the novice or the professional. The easiest way to get started with computer art is to understand what type of computer system you will use. Then you can decide which graphics software package is both compatible with your system and will your needs. Make sure to check with your home system to see if there is a free program already included.

If you do need to go shopping and buy a new graphics software package, first determine what exactly you plan to design. Ask yourself the following questions:

  1. What sort of options do you need when you create your computer artwork?
  2. Do you need color? If so, how many?
  3. How much do you plan to spend on a computer graphics software package?
  4. How hard is it to learn to use the software? Can you get books to help?

Art programs

Paint Shop Pro
Photoshop
Corel Draw
Paint

Whether y ou have a project in mind, or just want to explore the possibilities--It's time to draw something new with you computer!

Let the fun begin...

Article by: St. Louis Public Library staff