Wacom I can’t draw a straight line?

Okay all you venerable expert graphics tablet users….why can’t I draw even a relatively straight line from top to bottom on my brand new Intuos3 Wacom Professional Graphics Tablet without veering to the right? Is there a learning curve and I’m just behind it?

I’ve tried tilting the tablet, tilting the pen, tilting myself, messing around with the control panel settings and prefs…nothing works and it’s damn humbling.

I have a pretty steady hand usually (calligrapher for years, blah blah) but this is getting unnerving. Any tips and tricks I should know about? Any newbie wisdom would be greatly appreciated.

19 thoughts on “Wacom I can’t draw a straight line?”

  1. sorry, afraid I have no advice as I’ve been using one for years and still have the same problem. For linework still just drawing in pencil and scanning it in then using wacom and stylus to add color. good luck, practice does help a bit !

  2. It’s nice to know it’s not just me! Now I’m supposed to say “Thanks” and you’re supposed to say “You’re Wacom”.

  3. I had the same problem when I first got mine.. It just takes a little while to get used to. You’ll get the hang of it. It’s like drawing with a pencil for me now, I’m in love! lol your work is wonderful by the way!

  4. Thanks for the encouraging words and the compliment. I’ll keep plugging away. I like your “digital” concept, BTW.

  5. Huh! I had/have the same problem and I thought it was something to adjust on the Wacom. Lately I’ve figured it to be something for ME to adjust to (which I have). Also good to know I’m not the only one.

  6. Pingback: Hi there

  7. hey,

    Im actually having the same problem on the intous line. from what i can tell the hand to eye co-ordination is usually the culprit here. eliminating this isnt easy – and the more you draw traditionally, the more you change your brain back to spacial awareness – but spacial areness the mind can see and alter.

    using pens for years to write – this becomes second nature – so naturlaly drawing like this too (traditionally) actually makes your mind more comfortable.
    ive scoured for 4 years now the deepes depths of the internet, only to be told countless times – you can only choose one way of draeing. many of my friends now sketch traditionally, then either ink digitally, or traidtionally and just scan.

    they havent encountered any problems.

    moving digitally fully – it seems, requires and EXTRA touch. you MUST practice daily and try to rpelace the wacom tablet with the mouse for even browing or just using the computer. any contact will help to trigger muscle emory with the tablet in your mind – sadly – it takes YEARS to undo the ingrained muscle memory implanted there by traditional tools – something which many artists hate so, so so much.

    i have found allowing a larger tablet has helped IMMESNELY – i can get much more fluid natural movements rather little “scartches” at the tablet to form my lnes – thus resembling perhaps a smooth tombow mono 100 pencil on paper. other things is try placing a thin peice of catridge paper over the the drawing area on the wacom – making it FEEL more like traditional drawing.

    so far ive mainly been advised to use a cintiq – as you et a more natural “grasp” of the paper. this is perhaps the most difficult tihng – and im still struggling 4 years down the line. grasping paper on a desk is easy – rotating, composition, vanishing lines – they are all easy to set-up. but digitally…well not so easy if you dont know how.
    many concept artists swear by the hoizon and grid rules – ALWAYS align artwork properly and do a thumbanil BEFORE you even sketch your idea out – this way you have in inlaid refernce and an idea of wher eot place things digitally on a canvas that you can manipulate..
    sadly the manipulation of a digitla canvas still feels…”awry” and getting a brush size to fit the page how you ant it is infurating compared to the sharpene dline of a pencil. I suggest Loish’s method – dont use the full page, instead lay a background down of some type even just a rectangle of mish-mash colours this way you hav some perspective on dimnesion size before you even plan/draw/doodle – the rest is up to you my friend, but there isnt really a viable solution it seems to what you want – unless you get a cintiq aparently 0 but i havent tried one yet (too expensive!)

  8. I bought a Wacom Intuos the week before Christmas & I’ve given up. It’s just too flippin’ frustrating. My attempts at digitally drawing comics look like they’ve been drawn by a kindergarten child with a crayon. At 55 maybe I’m just too set in my ways. Gone back to my sketchbook to draw my comics now

  9. LOL YES! I kinda gave up!! ;-; Even using my trackpad and slowing my trackpad speed down on my laptop creates better artwork than the intuos itself!! LOL I feel so crap at art using the intuos. It feels like I’m a noob at drawing again…

  10. I have my tablet for 2 years already and I still have the same problem. I watch speedpaints in which people draw goddamn perfect lines with ease, and I honestly can’t understand how they do it… :'(

  11. I’ve had mine for 3 days now… and i love it. No issues at all except the first couple of hours getting used to the difference between a mouse and the pen.

    And ive got the smallest most basic “one” by wacom.

  12. I can still draw better with mouse after all Its all I had for 18 years, the tablet drives me mad for most retouching work, I cannot follow a line with the pen thing

  13. To troubleshoot my frustration, I just placed a straight edge on my tablet, drug the pen across it, and the line on the screen was all wavy. Depending where on the tablet the straight edge was placed, the straighter or wavier the line was. Seems like something defective, or maybe a bad setting? But to really see if you are failing at drawing, just put ruler or something you can trace along to guarantee you are making a physically straight line.

  14. You can use rulers to help! You just can’t use then diagonally. Use the move tool and drag out the ruler thingos with the measurements that are around your work (if they aren’t there look it up). This will create rulers, you can drag them anywhere, when you draw along them they’ll make your lines straighter. sorry I probably explained that badly but there you go theres a way.

  15. James Ketsdever

    Hey Charlie. Thanks for the tip but I gave up a while ago. Gave away my Wacom tablet. Hoping to replace it someday with a new Intuos Pro which *I hear* has a better “feel” than the old models. I noticed you can also buy a $10 glove thingy which allows you lay your hand on the surface without mucking up the work. Sounds like another usability problem solved. For a now a mouse is an acceptable second choice but I do miss me my Wacom for painting and more free form artwork.

  16. I googled this looking for answers and I through some tweaking I found a setting which seems to have helped.

    In the Wacom settings, if you have two monitors only use the monitor you use for drawing and also set to force proportions.

  17. To troubleshoot my frustration, I just placed a straight edge on my tablet, drug the pen across it, and the line on the screen was all wavy.

    In photoshop go to ‘View’ — and uncheck ‘snap’. That help my wavy line problem.

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