This week Corel launched the 2018 version of their software Painter. If you do not know, it is professional grade digital painting and art software designed in Ottawa, Canada. As for the past years, I had the opportunity to be part of the beta testers team and to get to know the new version before its official release.

The New Features That I Prefer

This year, I will not present you with a list of all the new features. For that, I invite you to visit the official website: PainterArtist. This time, I will review the new features that are of particular interest to me.

Thick Paint. Here is the novelty I prefer in Painter 2018. It is a series of brushes to create the illusion of thick paint. The effects created are even more effective than those of the “Impasto” category of the previous versions. For those familiar with the 2017 version of Painter, I would say that it is a cross between “Dynamic speckles” and “Impasto”. The effects are surprising of realism, especially if we modify some settings like the flexibility of the bristles and play with various papers. If you also have a stylus and a tablet standing rotation (which I unfortunately do not have), you should really enjoy Thick Paint.

Random Grain Rotation. This new feature enable a random grain rotation. Depending on the type of texture and medium chosen, it may make a big difference create a  more realistic, less mechanical and repetitive effect.

Here is a digital painting I created with the new Painter 2018, thick brushes and some Impasto brushes. June 2017. © 2017, Louise Lamirande.

Here is a digital painting I created with the new Painter 2018, thick brushes and some Impasto brushes.
June 2017.
© 2017, Louise Lamirande.

Natural-Media Brush Library. It is a brand new library of brushes that mimic traditional media like: pastel, charcoal, markers, acrylics, oils, and more. It makes things much easier for beginners or artists seeking to mimic traditional media in their digital artworks. Everything is placed in the same place.

Stability and Speed. Painter 2018 seems even more stable than previous versions. Even when working on a large canvas in high resolution, and then using brushes with complex functions, the software is stable. However, it is still wise practice to regularly do backups of your work regularly, just in case.

As for speed, most brushes are fast and there is no, or just a little, delay between the gesture and the result on the screen. The slowest brushes are from the real watercolour category. Obviously, using software like Painter 2018 requires a pretty powerful computer. In case of doubt, download the trial version to see if your system supports it well.

Quick Access to Brush and Media Options. This is a feature introduced in the 2017 version of the software, but it is made even more effective and complete with Painter 2018. The property bar and the extended properties bar show clickable icons for quick and easy access to contextual menus and control panels.  It is no longer necessary to search the very long “Window” menu to find what you need in order to modify the effects of a brush.

Promotional Video

More Information and The Trial

On PainterArtist website, you can find all the information about Painter 2018, all the features, a comparative table of the various versions of Painter and the technical details about the computer system requirements. You will also find a free 30-day downloadable trial version for PC and Mac.


Thanks for your visit and see you soon,

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