Many of you have got in touch to let us know how much you enjoy the videos that we often feature. We certainly find it inspiring to see how others use the iPad to creative content both weird and wonderful. When you see for yourself what is possible using an iPad and just a handful of cheap apps, it gets your creative juices flowing.
Though and Ellen and Andre have used a number of additional hardware and software components to create this superb cover of 'Rumour Has It' by Adele, there is no denying that it shows the iPad can be an important part of a quality music creation project.
With each hardware and software update the iPad makes more of an impact on the music creation landscape. As an example, the latest version of GarageBand includes an option to copy and paste audio tracks from other apps, hence opening up the possibility of producing complex tunes using just the iPad itself. Interesting times...
Find out lots more about Ellen and Andre's music here.
Suffice to say we are desperate to get our grubby little mitts on this one. If only!
The Alesis iO Dock has been promised for what seems like a very long time. Finally seeing it in action we have to say it looks really awesome and could solve a lot of the headaches around connecting devices to our iPads. It is nice to see it being used with GarageBand too.
Here's Apple's own iOS 5 overview to whet your appetite for the official release this Autumn. It is the usual high polish, and often parodied, affair with mostly Scott Forstall (naturally) talking up the new iOS developments.
We must admit to being quite excited about some of the new features, but we think one of the biggest developments for wider iPad adoption will be the independent activitation of the device. No computer needed. That's the future folks!
What about you? Is there anything you're particularly looking forward to following the iOS 5 and iCloud announcements?
iPads displaying beautiful refractive Prisms; Artists creating images live on their iPads; members of the public interacting with music creation apps and fractal models projected onto the walls with creativity oozing out of every corner - this is Future/Canvas an exhibition currently taking place in San Francisco.
It opened a few days ago, on 6th June, to coincide with this year's WWDC and is a showcase of all things creative to do with the iPad.
The exhibition features the work of several iPad artists from our Flickr group (an awesome pool of talent you should really check out) such as David Newman, Julia Kay, and the super talented Benjamin Rabe, as well as other artists.
The video below of the current Future/Canvas exhibit was posted by Leo Laporte's TWiT network and gives a nice sampling of the event for those of us that can't be there. We wish there was a bit more video of the artists at work but we're sure you will enjoy it anyway.
For those who are curious to see the new iOS5 features running on the iPad, 9to5mac.com have posted this video of the Developer Beta in action. Looks good!
Wow! We absolutely love this! Dare we say that the intro sounds better than the original classic by The Cure? It just sounds a bit more epic to us. Francis admits that his vocal performance might need some work, but keep in mind that it was recorded using the mic on his iPhone headset. Also note that not one single external instrument was used, it's all GarageBand native.
"Here's my full song recreation on the iPad 2 featuring of one of my favorite songs growing up, The Cure's Just Like Heaven.
Everything was done in the GarageBand app from scratch. No external instruments were used. For the voice, I just used an iPhone headset's mic, which worked adequately but not the best. It would have probably sounded better if I were a better singer. haha
There were a few bugs I found out while doing this. Some notes will cut out after the app "optimizes for performance". I discovered that the fix for this was re-quantizing the tracks.
The guitar also has a lot of limitations (esp. on the range of the fretboard) which is annoying.
The interface is also not as intuitive as it should've been ( no level envelopes nor automation) but hey, this is the first song I've mixed partly on the toilet.
Anyway, it was a fun first attempt and the iPad GarageBand app is definitely a great creation tool!"
On the way to Woodstock is the new reference/coffee-table iPad book from 955 Dreams, the developers of the History of Jazz, which became one of our favourites earlier this year.
Much of what we said about the History of Jazz in our review applies to the Woodstock app, it utilises a similar UI, integrating with YouTube and iTunes in the same way.
For those too young to remember this era and/or with a passion for music and its history, it is a fascinating read!
Being such an interactive experience, it is difficult to explain exactly how the app works in words, so we made this video for you. We hope you enjoy it and if you have had a chance to try 'On the way to Woodstock' be sure to let us know what you think of the app.
We have been waiting for the Album App by Dreamix Studio to receive a much needed update because in our opinion it was missing some key features at release.
Following the recent 2.0 update though we feel the Album App is much more accomplished app and we recommend you have a look at it.
The app now includes essential features such as deleting pages (added in 1.1 to be fair), re-ordering pages, sharing to Facebook and Twitter, plus, importantly for us, AirPrint (so that we can create PDFs of our albums).
Whilst some of the UI interactions are still a little quirky, it is a great app to use for building personal albums that you want to display on the iPad or share with others, including some useful page layouts and fairly straightforward page editing tools.
If you skip some of the more gimmicky bits and pieces and stick with a fairly plain theme you could even use the Album App to create your portfolio and share it with potential customers.
We have been playing with the app for a couple of weeks and the nicely produced video below from Dreamix Studio is a good representation of the app in action.
As always, we are interested to hear what you have to say, especially if you have tried the app yourself. Check out the video below, and let us know what you think.
Yesterday we highlighted the new high resolution canvas options in both ArtRage and SketchBook Pro (4 and 3 megapixels, respectively), if you missed that article it might be helpful to read it first and come back here to follow the discussion.
Because of the performance hit when painting with these new multi megapixel canvas options the doodler might find the standard resolution a more pleasant painting experience. However, if you plan on keeping your artwork and presenting it at the highest possible quality then surely the extra detail is worth the slowdown.
Preservation in print
If you were to present your ArtRage painting in print, at 1024 x 1024 you could just about get away with an image size that was no bigger that 12cm square. Go for the high resolution canvas and you can print up to 24cm square. That's enough data to allow your painting to be printed in a glossy magazine without the reader noticing the pixels. Certainly at that resolution large inkjet photo prints will surely shine.
Retention on a Retina class display
Most iPad artists might only ever display their paintings on the iPad screen, but that doesn't mean you should forego the megapixel canvas option. The next iPad is almost certainly going to come equipped with a Retina class display, that's 2048 x 1536 pixels. Any paintings created using the standard canvas options will look soft and perhaps even dull on a Retina class display, whereas multi megapixel paintings will fulfill the full potential of such a display.
Unleash the GPU
Of course, Procreate fans might just be able to have their cake and eat it. By enlisting the mindblowing power of the SGX graphics processor Procreate can run at speeds that ArtRage and SketchBook Pro can only dream of. The Procreate high resolution update can't come soon enough.
Painting Credit: Shaun Mullen. A fellow Brit and one of the best iPad artists we know!
Recent updates to both ArtRage and SketchBook Pro have finally pushed through the multi megapixel canvas barrier. SketchBook Pro struck first on May 13 with an optional high resolution canvas of 2048 x 1536, but then ArtRage hit back on May 27 with an unprecedented 2048 x 2048 canvas. That's a whopping 4 million pixels!
Both multi megapixel canvas options are limited to iPad 2 users and both have a performance hit. We haven't done any exhaustive testing to see just how much of a performance hit is present on each app, but it might be enough to make some of you think twice.
That in our opinion would be a shame. Head back here tomorrow when we'll explain why these new multi megapixel canvas options are so important and why we think you should consider using them.
Many thanks to reader Bill Pham for the heads-up regarding the SketchBook Pro update. Much appreciated Bill.