Adobe Photoshop Touch lets you modify your photographs on your iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch. I’ve written about it in the past, but this version has been tweaked and updated since then.
You can work on photographs taken directly with the iPad camera, or load images from your Camera Roll. You can also carry out a Google Image search or pull an image in from Facebook from within the app.
You get a range of effects and filters to apply to your photos from the basics like blurs, glows, and drop shadows to stylized looks like Old Photocopy and Glass. If you use regular Photoshop a lot of these will look similar.
Applying adjustments to any photo is easy – you can just select the effect from a series of thumbnails and then drag your finger horizontally on the slider to increase or decrease the strength of the effect. You can also add text to your images quite easily.
You can also save your images to the cloud with a free Adobe Creative Cloud account. This will let you sync your files or wirelessly transfer your work to other devices and to Photoshop CS5 or later on a Mac or Windows PC with your layers and resolution preserved to take your ideas even further.
Processed images can also be saved back to your Camera Roll or shared via Facebook, email or sent to a printer.
Teachers who are using iPads in their classroom should take alook at Photoshop touch if you want something to allow your students to work with photographs, but at £6.99 for the iPad version it might not be something you’d buy for the whole class, rather for specific needs. The iPod Touch/Android versions are cheaper though, at £2.99 so might be more within your budget.
It needs to be mentioned that Photoshop Touch requires at least an iPad 2 or iPhone 4S and iOS 6. It won’t work on the iPad 1 or earlier iPhones.
Let me know what you think in the comments.Read More
The 9 11 London Project is a new UK educational charity that has been set up to mark the tenth anniversary of 9/11 and to ensure that the legacy of those events is one that builds hope from tragedy. Its purpose is to ensure that this and future generations have the opportunity to be taught about the events and to understand the causes and consequences of 9/11, in the US, UK and across the world.
The website contains educational resources for History, PSHE/Citizenship, RE, English/Drama and Art/Design. There’s also an image and film bank and interactive timeline of the events of the 20th century leading up to 9/11. A section of the site offers guidance on teaching controversial issues such as this.
Check out the resources at : http://www.911educationprogramme.co.uk
In addition, the 9/11 London Project website is currently running a competition offering students the chance to win a trip to New York this September (8-12th), which will include a visit to the 9/11 Memorial. The winner in each category and the two runners-up will all win a trip to New York for the 11th anniversary. In addition each of the two category winners will receive £1000, plus an additional £1000 for the two winners’ schools.
All students have to do is say how they think 9/11 changed the world. The website wants them to use their imagination and send in an original, creative and thoughtful piece of work as either a 5 minute film or a 1200 word essay.
You can get more information here.
Beautiful Curves is a cute little drawing application, creating almost organic-looking artwork. According to its creator “Beautiful curves simulates that little bit of randomness in life, where you never know whats going to happen next.”
It’s a fun application, which would work on your interactive whiteboard.Read More
Just a quick link to a website that might be of interest to primary/elementary teachers. Bembo’s Zoo is based on the book by Roberto de Vicq de Cumptich. The idea behind the site is to use a font called Bembo to create 26 different animals, one for each letter of the alphabet.
So for the letter “A,” the letters that make up the word “antelope” are manipulated to form the creature’s outline. Similar things are done for “bison” and “crab,” and so on all the way through to “yak” and “zebra.”
On the IWB you could use with the screen capture tool and see if the students can work out the word from the animal. Or use it to inspire their own creations.
Check it out at : http://www.bemboszoo.com/Read More
I’ve always been a big fan of Serif products* – they provide a much more affordable alternative to the likes of Photoshop or CorelDraw. Just out is version X5 of their popular DrawPlus vector drawing package.
As well as creating standard vector drawings – SerifDrawPlus X5 also lets you generate both Keyframe and StopFrame animations which you can export as either animated .gif files, or as Flash .swf files.
DrawPlus X5 contains all the drawing tools you’d expect. There are lots of pre-set document types including posters, greetings cards and banners, to kick start your designs.
New in X5 is The Shape Builder Tool which can be used to combine simple shapes, including the built-in palette of QuickShapes, into more complex shapes. Dragging between the shapes combines them, and clicking on shapes that overlap will split and create new objects. It’s quick and easy to use.
An instant 3D conversion tool lets you convert simple objects into 3 dimensional shapes. There is also new Styles tab that lets you quickly apply various preset shadows, glows, bevels, feather edges, textures, text effects and more. The user interface has been improved, including the option to display larger tool icons if you wish.
Serif DrawPlus X5 is an excellent product when compared to similar products produced by Corel and Adobe. It can’t do everything these can, but it does enough, and the price should make it very attractive for schools. A single licence for DrawPlus X5 is about £80. It’s also worth looking at the Serif Design Suite which packages up DrawPlus along with MoviePlus, PhotoPlus and WebPlus. A 100 user licence costs around £2600 plus student licences are also available. More info here.
ICT Teachers should definitely take a look at the free teacher resources for using Serif products to support/teach the OCR Nationals, 14/19 Diploma, DiDa etc. These include ideas for projects, step by step guides, pupil worksheets and course materials. It’s an excellent set of resources, and much of it is free if you contact Serif. You can also download some free samples immediately. Take a look here : http://www.serif.com/Education/CurriculumCourses/
As an aside – you can also download and try out free versions of older Serif Software here.
*Disclosure – Over the past few years I have written some of the Serif training materials for the OCR Nationals and 14/19 Diploma, namely the Multimedia, Computer Graphics and Web Design modules. I was sent a free copy of Drawplus X5 to look at, but I have not been paid for this review.Read More
With the right software an interactive whiteboard can become a massive graphics tablet – it is a very different drawing experience to using a mouse. Here are 10 great websites that all Art teachers should have bookmarked. Most are free online drawing packages, but one or two a slightly different, but still worth exploring. Enjoy!
1. Aviary : http://www.aviary.com/ and also http://www.aviaryeducation.com/ An excellent free suite of tools for image editing – painting, vector and more. Also includes a sound editor thats worth investigating. There’s a regular version of Aviary, but now an educational version too.
A very simple sketch package. Quite neat effect, a bit like using watercolours in a sketch book.
Sketchpad is quite a fun paint package that works in your browser. All the basic tools you’d expect are here.
The Google Art Project is basically applying the Google Street View idea to the world’s art galleries. Visit some of the greatest galleries in the world and explore their paintings without leaving your classroom. Well worth a look.
An oldie but a goodie. Paint in the style of Jackson Pollock, but without the mess. Works great on an interactive whiteboard. Click to change colour.
Bomomo is still a favourite of mine. Each “brush” creates some very abstract effects as you move your mouse across the page.
One for the younger students – choose from a variety of crayons and felt-tip pens.
A very impressive, full-featured paint package. Lots of great features and it’s free. A paid version with extra features also available.
This is not a drawing program, Moodstream mixes images, movies and sounds to help the creative juices flow. Is hard to describe, but worth a look. Play with the sliders to suit your mood and see what turns up. Make sure your sound is on.
This is a free, online flash application which allow you to design your own name or logotype in graffiti-style. TGC comes with several fonts from throwups to bubble letters to wildstyles. The program also have an array of different tools that will help you further enhance your design. Great for designing fun titles for presentations too.
What do think of these resources? Got another one you want to share? Let me know in the comments!
Here’s a very interesting website for Art teachers or anyone interested in art. The BBC has announced the public beta launch of a new initiative to bring the UK’s entire collection of oil paintings to the Internet for the first time. It’s called Your Paintings.
Even if you’re an art-lover and have trawled the length and breadth of the country’s galleries and museums, there’s still a good chance that thousands of paintings have escaped your eyes. The project has already collected 63,000 paintings and they are aiming to get all 200,000 in the UK.
The BBC has now partnered with the Public Catalogue Foundation and hundreds of galleries and collections across the country. The collection will be presented in Your Paintings, a dedicated section on the BBC’s website, and they will be made available to view by anyone, anytime, for free.
The BBC is enlisting the help of the public to crowdsource the mapping of the content of the paintings, with a Your Paintings Tagger.
Find out more at : http://www.bbc.co.uk/arts/yourpaintings
Art teachers – this site will let you search by artist, by theme or by collection. It’s an excellent resource already, and will obviously grow over time. Well worth bookmarking.
Related site : Don’t forget the excellent Google Art Project too.Read More
Here’s another site to add to my list of excellent online paint packages. Psykopaint has been created “as a new tool to enable users to express their creativity with a mimimum of knowledge and skills”. It lets you paint over the top of an existing image using a variety of different tools. A slider will let you reveal the image underneath. Or you can just start with a blank canvas.
It’s great fun and well worth taking a look. http://www.psykopaint.com
Here’s a follow up piece to my blog post from last January about 10 Avatar Generators for Profile Pictures, which proved to be very popular. There’s obviously a lot of interest in these kind of websites!
Here are 5 more sites which let you create cartoon versions of yourself which your students (or you!) can use as an avatar in place of their own photograph.
Clay Yourself lets you create a version of yourself in modelling clay. Lots of choice. (Thanks Lara for the link!)
A quick way of producing a sketch version of yourself. Limited choice of options.
This lets you recreate yourself as an M and M sweet from the adverts. Probably going against the school’s healthy eating agenda… (Technically it’s “Become an M”)
This lets you recreate yourself in the style of the characters from the Lloyds TSB banking adverts.
Grabba Beast lets you build your own monster from a large library of body parts, some scary, some cute. Plenty of weird and strange designs. This would also be great for creating characters for digital storytelling.
If you haven’t already checked out the other 10 great sites, then go and take a look at the blog post from last year. If you want more of these sites, the full list can be found on my Delicious list here: http://delicious.com/dannynic/avatarRead More