GPU-driven digital painting application enables the creation and sharing of customizable tools for generative art projects.
If the trend in digital art is to replicate traditional tools to the nearest degree, where does that leave artists who want something completely different? Meet Black Ink: Bleank’s new digital painting software that makes uniqueness, and custom, one-of-a-kind brushes, a priority. Black Ink’s open beta is available now.
What once was limited is now limitless. By using Black Ink’s “Controllers” -- a simple, node-based visualization tool -- artists can tweak every parameter of a brush, from size and pressure control to complex mathematical behaviors. Realizing the nuanced look generative artists have been searching for is now a matter of preference. Load the program, start adjusting and see how your brush develops in the real-time preview window.
“Black Ink doesn’t want to show you something you’ve already seen, it wants to help you create something you haven’t,” said David Toyou, lead programmer and co-founder of Bleank. “The exploration of the brush system is an untapped engine for creativity; art has always been personal, now artists have a better way to personalize it.”
For generative artists, Black Ink offers a few components that change how they can approach their art at a core level.
Customized Brushes = Freedom. The ability to imagine brushes at every level takes away the bonds most generative artists are shackled with today. Every brush created can also be paired with Black Ink’s other functions, such as gradients and image-based color, to increase the amount of options a creator has at their disposal.
GPU-Driven = Fast. Black Ink’s speed is driven by the GPU, enabling artists to work at 10K with no lag. High performance is matched with simplicity through a simple user interface that always keeps the user focused on the art, not the program.
Community = Sharing. Built for artists of all skills levels, Black Ink is also a place where artists can collaborate. Along with the beta comes a new community forum that will promote the sharing of brushes and brush parts in progress. Users can discuss, give tips and critique each other’s work as they strive for something different.
“For a long time, concept artists and designers have used randomness to get their desired effect,” added Toyou. “They called it the ‘happy accident.’ With Black Ink, the control they needed is finally there. No more hoping that the next click makes it right.”
The Black Ink beta is currently available on Windows PCs with Mac OS planned for the future. The discount beta is priced at $44.99 and is accessible both through Bleank’s website and Steam. For users that would like to test it first, the Black Ink demo can be downloaded for two hours with full functionality before it switches to restricted mode. To get involved in the beta, users should download the trial and start posting feedback on the Black Ink forum or Facebook page.
Jennifer Wolfe is Director of News & Content at Animation World Network.