Masterful drawing in minutes!
"In love with drawing again!"
Whether you're drawing on paper with a pencil, or cookies with royal icing, Camera Lucida will help you to be a better artist.
Unlike hundreds of apps that enable you to create digital art, Camera Lucida instead enables you to create amazing physical art! Our app works by having your iPhone or iPad's camera pointed at your drawing surface. By watching your screen as you draw, you will be able to to see your reference image superimposed with your drawing - guiding your hand as little or as much as you want while you create your art. Better than a projector and more versatile than a light table, Camera Lucida has been fine-tuned for a decade to provide artists with the features they need to be accurate and creative.
For over a century, artists have made use of the camera lucida optical device to superimpose a live view of their subject onto their drawing or painting surface. Allowing the artist to trace what they see in front of them, the camera lucida is an invaluable aid in creating a lifelike and realistic drawing. Our app is truly a camera lucida for the 21st century!
With our Camera Lucida iPhone/iPad application, artists and non-artists alike can now draw anything they have a photo of. When looking at your screen, you'll be able to simultaneously see the image you want to draw as well as your drawing surface as you create your work of art.
With over 11 years of continuous development, Camera Lucida's functionality eclipses the competition. Check out these features:
- Advanced image filters to help you see with an artist's eye.
- Multi-device support to enable you to stream live video of your drawing to a second device.
- Support for saving and restoring sessions, including automatically realigning your camera, sketch and reference image.
- Full color palette control, including using your own paints, markers, etc.
- Use any camera on your device and adjust for tilted and mirrored setups manually, or use an in-app purchase do do it automatically.
- Secondary video feed support to enable you to draw from a live subject, not just a photograph.
- Time-lapsed recordings of you creating your drawing you can share on social media.
- Support for external bluetooth keyboards to aid in creating large art through mirroring your display.
- Advanced tools such as vertical split screen sliders, timed image fading in and out, etc.
- Video tutorials you can watch from within the app or from YouTube.
- A full user manual available from within the app.
- Customer support that you can count on and an active user community for inspiration.
To use our application, you just place your iPhone or iPad between your drawing surface and your eyes and trace what you see on the screen!
A ton of fun for artists young or old, amateur or professional, the Camera Lucida app makes a great addition to any artist's toolbox.
IMPORTANT: To use Camera Lucida, you need to fix your iPhone or iPad in place above your drawing. We use a stack of books or a flower vase to do this. Tutorials are included in the app to help you get started.
Splash art by Carolyn Hall Young, 1953-2016.
Wow! Wow! Wow! It keeps getting better!
With version 14.0 you can now use multiple iOS devices at the same time and stream the video from one device to another! With this capability you can easily create enormous art, even murals. Or perhaps you just want to draw more comfortably with your large iPad screen in front of you and your iPhone's camera poised about your drawing surface. It's up to you!
This new version also brings another long-hoped for functionality: The ability to save your drawing session part way through and then restore the drawing session at a later time. And the icing on the cake is the ability to *automatically* realign your drawing, camera and reference image.
Additionally, users who have noticed the time-lapse videos can be "grainy" will be happy to hear that the default recordings are much cleaner and the app has a new user interface for letting you pick the format and quality of the output video.
Ratings and Reviews
Best app for drawing, period
I use this app to get my size and perspective correct before painting. I am retired. I wanted to learn to paint but my drawing skills were marginal. I had taken a couple of botanical art classes at the local arboretum and these stimulated my interest even more. My problem has always been perspective. My drawings are always a little off and it makes my paintings look the same. I have been using Camera Lucida for a number of years and it has solved my perspective issues. I so enjoy using it. This newest release makes the setup for drawing simple. I have so benefited from using this program. It has not only kept my interest in painting alive, it has enhanced it. I can honestly say I am able to draw better because the app helped me get through the initial struggling phase. Thank you Peter for investing so much time in this app. You didn’t abandon it after you released it. You improved it immeasurably. If you want to draw, get this app.
Just a follow up. This is still my go to app. I use it to lay out my paintings. I use it to get my size and perspective correct. The auto focus is awesome and now I have been using the update to couple two Apple devices together which has allowed me to prepare larger paintings. I don’t know of another app that is cared for more by its author. It’s simply brilliant. Good instructions, good videos explaining how to use it. I can say that it has helped to paint which has given me years of happiness during my retirement.
I decided to learn watercolor painting but have no skills for drawing. Choosing my own photos to work from I was spending way to much time trying to make an accurate light sketch. The sketch is minimal but so important to perspective in the composition. I was reading about the camera Lucida when I found this app for my iPad. I figured out a way to use it and am so disappointed I had only grabbed scratch paper. My line drawing took very little time and the very quick painting atop that drawing was terrific! This takes so much pressure off and allows me the pleasure of experimenting with the paint and it’s effects without the very hard and tedious task of making an accurate sketch. Thanks for coming up with this app! It will take a little practice getting used to how to set up for accurate size overlay. I do need a stand but so far I have managed. Patty
Ps. I despise apps with “in app purchase” so I appreciate the way you marketed this. Reviews were positive and you were clear about it takes a little getting used to. But that is the case with all the camera Lucida options. You are drawing without looking at the paper. Kind of weird but great results.
This is so useful
Camera Lucida solved 2 problems for me: getting my drawing onto my painting paper (resizing if needed), and getting proportions and perspectives correct. That was very hard for me. I’ve tried tracing paper, tracing by impressing, light box. This app lets me get either job done quickly so I can get on to painting. I can set it up, draw my layout and be ready to paint so quickly that I hardly notice the task I used to dread. In the earlier version I had some trouble getting the calibration correct when working on an angle, but the new calibration module resolved that. It worked perfectly the first time I used it. I usually use the OSMO to hold my iPad because my granddaughter wasn’t using it any more, but one time I put the iPad on a kitchen step stool right over my drawing, and that worked just fine, too. Literally, the setup and prep to use Camera Lucida takes about 30 seconds. And, it’s way cheaper than buying a light box, projector, or any of the other devices people have tried over the years and centuries.
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The developer does not collect any data from this app.
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- Peter Moeykens
- 35 MB
- Graphics & Design
- Requires iOS 9.3 or later.
- Requires iPadOS 9.3 or later.
- iPod touch
- Requires iOS 9.3 or later.
- Age Rating
- © Peter Moeykens
- In-App Purchases
- Auto-Correct For Perspective $4.99
Some in‑app purchases, including subscriptions, may be shareable with your family group when Family Sharing is enabled.