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July 19, 2006


Charles Tinney

Oh... I so want to do that with my Cintiq at home. I don't have an animation desk, but I do have a lightbox. If only a were handy with tools. :(

Rusty Mills

this is great. I remember at one point I had designed a way to mount a Cintiq in a traditional animation desk hole. This is great. What a nice way to animate!


Excellent.Would love that. Thanks for sharing.I was watching the extras on a Samuri Jack dvd and it appears that Genddy and his crew work on rotateable cintiq's embeded in animation desks as well.Very cool.


this is genius! how do you stop it falling off? I would be worried it fell on the floor... yikes!

2d lives....


This is the kewlest thing I ever did see! I put it on our blog with a pointer to you and you must be the sweetest man ever to plug the book! I owe you a beer!

Roberto Ortiz

This is one hell of an awesome home project. Man you have inspire me to try to build one.



Man, that is awesome! Can't think of any other way to describe it. Awesome!

Mark Behm

don't suppose you could show us a photo of the back where it's mounted.


The Cintiq screen is inaccurate and hot like hell. I doubt this is a good idea. It cost indescent amount of money just for show off IMO...

David N

Hi, Camilla ,

Sorry to hear about your bad experience with Cintiq.

I haven't found it to be inaccurate . When you say that "the Cintiq screen is inaccurate" my response would be : Inaccurate compared to what ? If you're comparing it to pencil and paper , then yes, I would have to admit the Cintiq is not as accurate. Believe me, if I had my way I'd prefer to keep working on a good ol' animation disc with pencil and paper. My hand connected to the surface of paper via a 2B pencil IS MUCH more sensitive/accurate than drawing on the surface of the Cintiq tablet(or any other Wacom tablet) with a digital stylus . But given the trend towards all digital production , "paperless" animation, I haven't found a better tool than the Cintiq. This has nothing to do with "showing off" with a new toy ... my company is moving to a paperless production pipeline and so are a lot of other animation companies, so I need to keep up with that trend and learn to use the new tools . For me the Cintiq allows me to keep working in hand-drawn , traditional 2-D animation style , but with the advantages of not having to shoot pencil tests with a video camera or use a scanner to capture my drawings , and my drawings can be instantly transmitted via FTP to a client or a co-worker who is at a long-distance from my physical location.

As for the heat issue , I have found that the Cintiq gets a bit warm after several hours of continuous use, but I wouldn't describe it as "hot like hell" . What version of the Cintiq did you try ? I don't know if maybe the older versions of the Cintiq ran hotter than the current one? The only version I'm experienced with is the latest model Cintiq 21 UX . I have heard complaints that older models of the Cintiq had more of a gap between the point of the stylus and the virtual paper surface because the glass was thicker on the older Cintiqs, which might be what you're referring to as "inaccurate". Again, I haven't found that to be an issue with the Cintiq 21 UX .

I keep a small clip-on fan aimed at the surface of the Cintiq to keep the air circulating and I think it keeps it cooler. The bit of warmth that emanates from the surface of the Cintiq is not uncomfortable , but again, that's my experience and your sensitivity to heat may be greater than mine.

All that said, hey , if it's not a tool you enjoy using , that's ok with me . For the work environment I'm in , trying to continue to do traditional, hand-drawn animation it's a very useful tool, a good compromise between the digital world and the analog pencil 'n' paper world .

Gustavo Pabon

You guys have the best job.
I was at the 2006 San Diego Comic Con and visited the Wacom booth. That table is hot. I want one badly. Maybe when I get my next bonus (and if the kids don't need anything). Here's to wishing.

Tony C.

This is fantastic! Could you post a couple of pics of how the Cintiq is mounted to the back?

Tomas Landgreen

Well... I'm working on a cintiq 21 also, and I distinctly remember that my old backlit animation table got so hot, that I had to turn off the light every now and then :) Cintiq is quite cool by comparison..

David N

Good point , Tomas. I've also worked on traditional animation desks where the backlight got really hot if it was left on too long.

To Tony C. and Mark Behm :

I think Steven Geer and Ronnie Williford are going to be selling the Cintiq mounting units (see Steven and Ronnie's contact info. on their websites linked above), so I'm going to hold off on posting any photos of the inner workings unless they give me permission.

However, I'm pretty sure anyone who owns a Cintiq could backwards engineer the design of the mount from looking at the back of the Cintiq and figuring out how it could be mounted inside the hole space where the lightbox unit was mounted under the animation desk , but since Steven and Ronnie are going to be making them available at a very reasonable price I'd just suggest you order one from them . The piece will be manufactured from wood and teflon. I'm one of those guys who doesn't own the tools or have the inclination to make something like this for myself if I can just order one pre-made from someone else. (If for some reason Steven and Ronnie decide not to build the mounting units I'll post detailed photos with their permission.)

Mark Behm

Thanks a lot David. A secure mounting system would be a serious advantage to anything I could cobble together. :)

Here's another Q for you. How do you guys find the texture of the surface under your hand? Do you use a cotton glove to get closer to that paper friction? I have a tabletPC and it's an issue when I draw "with my shoulder" and don't lock the edge of my hand to the screen.


What's on top of the book on the shelf? It looks like a hashish pipe to me.
Interesting feature........

David N


Nope, just a regular old pipe , like dad or grandpa used to smoke (unless of course your grandpa smoked hashish...)

Thanks for that , K .

Colin Giles

This is SO cool. I use a tablet PC ad this is the next step up for me to take one day!

What software are you using btw???

David N

Colin -

Several of the photos above show Flash open on the Cintiq screen. However, the program that is actually best to use with the Cintiq (for the natural drawing feel) is Mirage from Bauhaus Software.

In the second set of photos , starting with the guy in the green hat (c'est moi) the software being used is Mirage . A couple of earlier posts on my blog show some examples of rough "pencil" drawings done in Mirage.

Colin Giles

Thanks Dave! I'm gonna definitly chack that out.

Great Blog btw.


Wow, killer setup!!!

..and im stuck here working with my generic 6X8 tablet.


Hey guys! Awesome Awesome idea. May I ask you one question though? What program is used in the last picture? (the one that says "it rotates!") Thanks A LOT! in advanced! :) Yuval :o)

David N

Yuval -

The program is Mirage by Bauhaus Software .


Yuval Karmi

Thank you so much! yet again, this is a truly awesome idea. You might want to check out the discussion about it in bitey castle forums. The Website owner, 35 years old Adam Phillips - A former special effects animator for disney said, and that's a quote: "when Fox studios was still doing feature animation, they had a prototype built of exactly this thing. A friend of mine was working for Fox at the time and he was one of the lucky animators who got to test it.

It was a special-built thing though (not by Wacom) and it had paper-flipping buttons in the top left. It also had proprietary software, which is what it could be if that screenshot isn't Mirage.

Several animators were asked to trial it during production but the concept died in the arse some time later." Thanks again for commenting back!


THis is an awesome set up!!


I can't remember whether it was the first or second season but there was some 'making of' stuff with Genndy Tartakovski and the Samurai Jack guys doing exactly the same thing! Kewl then, kewl now. One question - how many artists find the older slimmer styluses (styli?) were more pleasant and 'intuitive' as it felt more like a pen than a thick marker. I'm going to be talking to a Wacom rep and wanted to see what others think. David?

Aguinaldo Lazarini

Hello everybody´s!!! Great idea this the use the cintiq tool for make animations drawings cartoons and other styles!!!
Congratulations 21 ST CENTURY ANIMATION DESK!!!
See you guys, good luck and sucessfuly all!


I guess my wacom tablet is obsolete now? =(
nice blog by the way!


David N

Well, I hope the Wacom tablets are not obsolete ! I have a good ol' Wacom Intous 2 at home, still going strong . (the Cintiq is at work ,but I'm still saving up to get one at home , but until then Intous 2 for me )

Daniel Domingos

Demais adorei o trabalho de vcs, vou ficar ligado para ver se consigo aprender um pouco com vcs. Valeu um abraço e até mais...

(Daniel Domingos Brasil)

Dave Redl

Beautiful! I made somthing like this a while back, but working on a computer, you need constant access to your keyboard for hot keys and occasional typing. I borrowed my Dad's circular saw and pieced this mess together! (Click on my name for the link) I can see the keyboard thru the acrylic piece on the bottom, but unfortunately can't rotate the thing.

This is using the precursor to the Cintiq, the PL-400! (Can't even find these things anymore!)


Peter Walser

What type of Cintiq do you use? Looks like a Cintiq 21UX.

This is great! The Cintiq may be a bit too expensive for me right now. I might like to just get a graphics tablet for now.

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