Tips for Using a Graphics Tablet for Better Photo Editing

The benefits of using a graphics tablet for photo editing are huge. It’s not just about being able to move the cursor more precisely than on a mouse — it’s also about the added pressure sensitivity and pen tilt features that make drawing, sketching and painting easier than ever before.

Graphics tablets are a great tool for digital artists and photographers. They’re also useful for editing your photos. If you’ve ever tried using a mouse to edit your images, you know it’s not a good experience.

The problem with using a mouse is that it only gives you two dimensions of control. With a graphics tablet, you get pressure sensitivity and up to three axes of control — X, Y and Z. This means that you can apply more pressure to create more opaque colors and lines or less pressure to create lighter colors and lines. This makes editing much easier because you can make subtle changes with the stroke of a pen rather than having to undo mistakes by hand.

It’s also worth noting that when I talk about graphics tablets here, I’m referring specifically to tablets that include an LCD screen so that you can see what’s going on as you draw or edit images. You can still use other types of tablets (like Wacom’s Intuos line), but those don’t have screens attached so it’s harder to see what you’re doing when making fine adjustments.

The pros and cons of using a graphics tablet for photo editing

In this part, we’ll look at some of the pros and cons of using a graphics tablet for photo editing, as well as some tips to get started.


You can draw with more precision than with your fingers alone, which can help if you’re trying to make small changes to an image, such as removing blemishes or fine-tuning curves.

You don’t have to worry about smudging your photo by touching it with your fingers or hands. If you’re working on large prints or multiple images at once, this can save time and effort when compared to editing photos on a screen.


Graphics tablets aren’t cheap — they typically cost hundreds of dollars — so they aren’t the best option if all you want is an easy way to make basic edits like adjusting exposure or saturation levels.

If you’ve never used one before, here are some tips for getting started with photo editing on a graphics tablet:

Choose the right tablet for your needs.

There are a variety of tablets available, and each one has its own unique set of features. If you’re just looking for something simple that can help with basic photo editing tasks like changing layer opacity or moving layers around in Photoshop, then a basic tablet is probably all you need. But if there’s one feature in particular that you want to take advantage of — such as pressure sensitivity or pen tilt — then you’ll want to look at tablets that offer those functions specifically.

Choose the Right Software

Graphics tablets are designed for use with certain types of software packages — for example, Photoshop or Illustrator. These programs have been designed specifically to work with graphics tablets, so they’re ideal for creating high-quality artwork quickly and easily. But if you want to use other types of software (like Microsoft Word or PowerPoint), it’s worth checking whether they support graphics tablets first — otherwise they may not function properly or produce the results you want!

Buy High-Quality Styluses

A good stylus will make all the difference when working with your graphics tablet. It’s important that it fits comfortably in your hand and allows you to easily draw on your screen

Get comfortable with the pen grip.

The pen grip is an important part of any graphics tablet experience because it lets you keep your hand steady while working on photos in Photoshop or other software programs. Some pens come with an adjustable grip so users can find their most comfortable position.

Get used to the pen by drawing circles, squares and lines.

The pen has two buttons on its side that allow you to change the brush size and opacity while drawing. You will find this useful when adjusting your brush size while working on different parts of an image.

Get used to pressure sensitivity by drawing with different amounts of pressure from the pen. The harder you press down, the darker your line will appear on screen. This feature is useful if you want to create thick outlines for drawings and designs, but it can also be used for creating shadows or shading effects in your images.

Get a graphics tablet that works with your computer.

There are several types of tablets, including ones that work with Macs or PCs, ones that connect via Bluetooth or USB cables, and tablets with touch screens. If you’re not sure which type of tablet is right for you, talk to someone at the store before buying one so they can help match it up with your computer.

Set up your device properly.

Make sure you’ve got all the right drivers installed and that everything is working properly before starting to use it. Test out the pen and stylus as well as any buttons on the device itself (such as zoom) so they do what they’re supposed to do when pressed or clicked.

Practice using your new tool slowly at first so you get used to it and know how much pressure to apply when drawing on the screen or selecting items within an image editor program such as Photoshop CC 2019.