Saturday, September 7, 2013

My Studio Office for the Scrollsaw Workshop

I get questions from time to time about my design studio. I thought I would show you my desk and tell you a little about the hardware and software I use to design the patterns and produce the videos.

On the desk there are two Dell computers. I use an I5 for pattern design and an I7 for video editing. Each computer has two 23 inch monitors. I use a single keyboard and mouse for both systems. I use a Microsoft utility named Mouse Without Borders to allow me to use the single mouse/keyboard to move from machine to machine. Works great.

I have two printers. The Epson Artisan 837 inkjet printer for color and a HP LaserJet P1006 for black and white printing of the patterns. The Epson also has a nice scanner that I use to scan artwork into the computer for use in CorelDraw.

The white drawing board is a Staedtler 999. I do all the hand drawing for patterns and my comic strip on this board. On the pullout keyboard tray is a ArtOGraph lightpad 930. It's used to trace my pencil drawing to ink before I scan them into the computer.

The microphone on the boom arm is a Samsom C01U usb mic. I use it for voice over in some of the videos and when I use to do the audio tips for the blog. It also works well with my Dragon Naturally Speaking voice dictation software. I sometimes use Dragon to help me get through my email. I actually never get through my email but Dragon can sometime help.

My pattern design program is CorelDraw X5. I'm one version behind. CorelDraw is a vector based graphics program. It's ideally suited for scroll saw patterns. I am able to create fine line patterns for good print quality. CorelDraw has a bit of a learning curve but once mastered it is very full featured and powerful. 

I use Corel Paint Shop Pro X5 for all the photo editing for the blog and pattern book illustrations. I like Photoshop better but PSP is much cheaper and does everything I need.

I use an Intuos 5 graphics tablet for digital drawing when needed. The pattern are mostly completed with a mouse. If you need a graphics tablet this one is very nice and worth the extra money over the cheaper models.

My current video editing software is Pinnacle Studio 16. They recently purchased Avid Studio and rebranded it with their name. I was a huge fan of Avid Studio and Pinnacle seems to be supporting it well so far. I was not a big fan of the earlier Pinnacle products.

All the programming for the scroll saw application like Stence Printer and the Key Chain Maker are codded if Delphi 6. Delphi is an object oriented programming environment. It's native code is Pascal. I have used this environment for years but they were also bought out a few years ago so I'm still on an old version.

There are several other applications like Adobe Dream Weave, Camtasia Studio, Filezilla and others I use to keep the blog running. Most of this software has been purchased with the kind donations I receive from you all. 

Typically I start working on the blog late at night after work and family time. If you watch the time stamps on the blog entries you will see I generally don't sleep much. I use to get away with three to four hours sleep a night but as I get older that don't work so well. 
Every pattern is designed the night it is posted. A question I get often is if I have a archive of patterns that I pull from to post. Nope they all get done the night before you see them. I generally have two or three hours to get the email answered, update the blog and design a pattern for the next morning. Luckily I have two volunteers who make the Community forum and the pattern catalog run smoothly. Russ keeps the forum going and Frank updates the daily pattern into the catalog that he kindly designed. Without those guys it would get really tough to keep up.

That's probably all you can stand about what I do. I have shown my woodworking shop before but never my studio. I thought a few of you tech folks might find it interesting. If you have any questions about any of the software or hardware I use feel free to ask.

This is the end of the daily posts. Keep scrolling for lot's more scrolls saw fun!
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Wooden Vases on the Scroll Saw Book $12 Each
Each digital book is available for download immediately after payment.
The books are $12 per edition and contains eight unique patterns each.
Watch the following video to see how easy these beautiful scroll saw vases
are to make.