December 3, 2007
This is an outtake of an e-mail I recently received…
I need some advice; I do pen and inks and work with colored pencil…what tools should I get and or what programs should I know to make my artwork more publisher friendly. I can’t just send originals in the mail. Should I have a scanner? If so, which one? What size?…how should I go about doing this?
I’m going to answer this here thinking it may be of some interest to others.
Basically, I think you can get by with two things here, Jon. A flatbed scanner and Photoshop software.
I use a Mustek ScanExpress A3 USB scanner. At around $150 to $200, I’m pretty sure it’s the cheapest, large format scanner on the market and that’s why I’ve got one. It’s easy to use and plugs into your computer with a usb cable. If you read the reviews on it, some people love it and some people really, REALLY hate it. I like it just fine because it was really, REALLY cheap to buy. Plus, I never send raw scans to anybody, anyway. I always adjust my art in Photoshop before I send it.
Photoshop is pretty much the industry standard as far as artwork manipulation programs go. You can adjust the color and size of your work, add things, delete stuff, correct problems… most anything you want to do, Photoshop can do it. A new version of Photoshop will run around $300 to $400.
Now here’s the cool thing… if you get a cheap Mustek scanner like I’ve got, it includes an older version of Photoshop to run it with… mine did anyway. So for a couple of hundred dollars you can be set up with a functional scanner to get your artwork into your computer, and Photoshop to adjust your images and get them out of your computer and onto a disc.