Working on a Cintiq: Pros and cons

To get, or not to get a Cintiq? I get this question quite often ◠◡◠ It may be a big step for the hobbyist, but a nice investment for a professional artist.

I recently got this question:

What do you think about the differences between using a Cintiq and not using this tool? I’m an illustrator and I have some difficulties illustrating some of my works digitally.

I work with web design, but that is not what I want to do for live, you know? And I feel that my pencil & paper works so much better than my Illustrator/Photoshop techniques (even with years of experience on this programs, it isn’t as intuitive as using a pencil or a pen). It was a big step, talking about money, for you to get one? Do you think that investment comes back after increasing the illustration qualities with the Cintiq?

I’m trying to convince myself with the cost x benefits. It’s a big step for me buying one, but I think there is some future for me on this field.

Hey, thanks for asking! For me, it was definitely worth it. When I gradually moved from traiditional, to digital art, I started out with a mouse at first(Yikes!). Then with a Wacom Intuos2. I loved it, it was awesome for painting, but my hand wasn’t really steady for drawing line drawings. So in 2009, I decided to invest in a used Wacom Cintiq 12WX(I prefer the smaller models) And till this day, it still works like a charm  Actually took a while before we became friends(I almost sold it again..!), but today I’d say that it’s been a life saver! At least for me, been using one ever since ◠◡◠

Here’s my experience of pros and cons working on a Cintiq.

Yours truly, Z and my Cintiq


Precise sketching

Most of us probably know the difference between fine lines, and shaky lines. I find it extremely hard and time consuming to draw finer sketches or line art on a regular Wacom tablet. So when it comes to sketching, you can guess by now, which one I’ll prefer using ◠◡◠ 

You speed up and save time

Just sketching itself will become so much more efficient, once you get used to it. For instance, transferring to a Cintiq, I don’t even scan my sketches anymore. I just scribble down the ideas on a piece of paper, and then I just draw it again using the Cintiq. I love shortcuts!


The display is not quite there yet

For rendering and painting, an additional regular monitor is still a must. Since Cintiqs(in my opinion) don’t really have the capacity of showing accurate colors and contrasts… Yet! It’s getting there, though ◠◡◠ 

So yeah, hope this answered your questions!
If you ask me then YES. It’s a great investment. If you aim to draw and paint for a living, then this will definitely make your life easier. Oh and no, I’m not sponsored, in case you wondered ◠◡◠

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Thanks for reading! 



  1. Didier Duroc 29 April, 2016 at 20:43

    Hi Andrea,
    Your advice helped me to buy my first cintiq 13hd. One year later, and one comic album later, I still love it!
    The only con is the fragility of cables and plugs.
    Yesterday, I tested the iPad pro and its stylus. Very impressive for sketches, but I will look more further before buying this expensive tool. I would like to read your feeling about it too.
    Best Regards

    1. Andrea 2 May, 2016 at 13:26

      So glad to hear that, Didier! :D Congrats to your comic album! Do you have it showcased somewhere?

      Yeah I agree, the older versions seem to have more robust cables, and less ports to accidentally break. Oh, never tried the iPad pro and stylus. I barely use iPads, but if I ever get the opportunity to try that combo, I’ll make a review!


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