How to use an Apple pencil with a Mac computer

the Apple Pencil cannot be used natively with Mac computers as the screens do not have the required other medium touch, but there is a way to paint or draw on an iPad using the Apple stylus and duplicate the content on a Mac. The trick is to use one of Apple’s continuity features to wirelessly share the Mac screen with an iPad. Quick sketches made with an Apple Pencil and iPad can also be inserted directly into Mac apps that accept images.

The Mac computer has long been associated with creative work, favored by many production studios in Hollywood for cinematic work and by artists around the world for graphic arts and digital paintings. Long before the existence of the iPad or any modern computer tablet, the stylus and graphics pad were developed to make computer art more intuitive. A mouse is great for selecting text and precisely aligning objects and images when composing layers, but the natural feel of a pencil is unbeatable for free-form illustrations. Graphics tablets are still available for the Mac computer, but models that include screens often cost more than an iPad, making it difficult to justify the expense for such a specialized device.


Related: What Is Continuity And Why Is It Critical To Apple’s Ecosystem

Apple offers two different ways to use an Apple Pencil with a Mac, and both require an iPad. To insert quick drawings into a document, it may be easier to use Continuity Sketch, a feature that allows iPad to be used independently for drawing with an Apple Pencil or finger. Right-clicking on a Mac document and choosing “Insert Sketch” will open a blank canvas on the selected iPad, iPhone, or iPod Touch with familiar markup tools appearing on it. ‘screen. The pen, marker, pencil, eraser, and ruler can be used to create the sketch, and pressure and tilt sensitivity are enabled when using an Apple Pencil. Press “Done” to close the drawing and the image is inserted into the Mac document without the need to save and send it, making it a quick and easy process. For more advanced drawing, a Mac paint application or graphic design application can be used along with another continuity feature called “Sidecar”.

How to use the Apple sidecar

Apple Sidecar app on Mac and iPad

Apple makes it quick and easy for Mac owners to enjoy a high-quality graphics tablet experience if they also have an Apple Pencil and an iPad. This feature, known as Sidecar, works with any Apple Pencil compatible with Apple Pencil, from the cheapest 10.2-inch iPad to the larger 12.9-inch iPad Pro with XDR display. Full pressure sensitivity and tilt information is transmitted to the Mac with screen updates appearing without apparent delay on the iPad. Since there are no cables to connect, iPad can be placed wherever it’s most convenient for drawing as long as it’s within Bluetooth range. This means that an artist can take their iPad to a sofa across a room and continue painting / drawing, unlocking the kind of freedom that allows creativity to flow.

Sidecar is known as the Continuity feature which allows Mac owners to use an iPad as a secondary display, but its ability to accept finger and Apple pencil input is what makes this feature so remarkable. Setup is done entirely on the Mac, using the Sidecar section of the System Preferences app to select any iPad that’s signed in using the same Apple ID. When enabled, options appear in the macOS menu bar that allow iPad to mirror the Mac screen or appear as an extended desktop. The combination of Sidecar and Continuity Sketch allows an Apple Pencil and an iPad to largely replace the need for a dedicated graphics pad and provides yet another reason to own multiple Apple products.

It’s also worth mentioning that this will all get even better when Apple launches its Universal Control feature. Announced in June 2021, Universal Control is similar to Sidecar in that it allows a Mac and an iPad to work together. However, where Sidecar simply turns an iPad into a secondary monitor for a Mac, Universal Control allows the iPad to continue running iPadOS while syncing seamlessly with a paired Mac. This means that someone can use the Apple Pencil on their iPad and draw as they normally would with all of their favorite apps. Once someone has finished their artwork and wants to move it to their Mac, they can move the mouse cursor from their Mac to the iPad, select the design, and drag it on the Mac. Mouse and files move from iPad to Mac seamlessly, as if they always have been, creating a pretty magical workflow. Universal Control won’t launch until Spring 2022 for macOS Monterey and iPadOS 15, but it should be Good It’s worth the wait for creatives looking to use their Apple Pencil and Mac to their fullest potential.

Next: Start Working on Mac, Recover on iPhone, and Finish on iPad

Source: Apple 1, 2

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