Slate Shortcut Tools – PaintDock

Posted on 2012/02/21 at 22:41 by daarken 44 Comments

One of the disadvantages of working on a slate is the lack of a keyboard and screen real estate. Sure you could use an onboard keyboard, but that takes up a lot of valuable screen space. You could always use a USB or bluetooth keyboard, but that sort of defeats the purpose of a small, portable workstation. The answer to the Asus EP121 and Samsung Series 7 is PaintDock. This screen overlay will allow you to use various shortcuts without taking up a lot of space. In this video Daarken talks about how to use the PaintDock and how to customize it to fit your needs.

Download PaintDock

Update – Ok, nevermind about changing the button to “enter.” I never noticed the cancel and confirm buttons that pop up in Photoshop when you transform something. Haha, man I feel dumb.

I changed my dock again. Instead of the “ctrl” button on the bottom I changed it to “save.” I also changed around a few other things to include the HUD color picker, warp, and transform.

44 Comments on "Slate Shortcut Tools – PaintDock"

  1. Ricardo Arganza · 2012/02/22 at 05:38 · Reply

    I was thinking about buying a small number keyboard and customize the shortcuts but this is far better.
    I´m curious about the fact that i always see you drawing in landscape mode. I thought one of the advantages of tablet pcs over, for example, the cintiq 12 was having the option to rotate it. I supose the position of the toolbars may be the reason, but don´t you feel the screen a little small when the document is in portrait mode?

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/02/22 at 09:23 · Reply

      Yes, the reason I don’t use portrait mode is because there isn’t enough room to paint with all of the different menus and toolbars open.

    • gmang · 2013/09/10 at 00:38 · Reply

      Don’t. I tried that, but photoshop doesn’t allow to set your shorcuts to the keypad keys (in fact photoshop doesn’t allow pretty much anything with shortcuts).

      I bought a ipazzport KP-810-16A for the task. It’s around 19$ and does the job pretty well, but it’s uncomfortable with multiple key combos (as ctrl+alt+space).

      If anyone finds a keypad in which you can define de keypad keys (not the software shorcuts) please le me know!

  2. Jack Wurm · 2012/02/22 at 18:11 · Reply

    Oh Snap! I got a nod on a video. :)

    On a side note:

    My brush size changes work with the pen in range as long as it isn’t touching and when you transform, along the top there will be a check mark and a circle with a line through it for “enter” and “cancel”. So you could use that spot on the paint dock for something else if you wanted too.

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/02/22 at 18:15 · Reply

      Hmm, for some reason I don’t see the check mark and circle you are talking about on mine. I also have to raise my stylus at least 1 inch above the surface before the brush size buttons will work. Are you using the EP121 or Samsung Series 7?

  3. Jack Wurm · 2012/02/22 at 18:27 · Reply

    I’ve got the Slate. I’ll snap a picture of my buttons and pop it up on the forum under the thread I started.

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/02/22 at 18:34 · Reply

      Ok cool. Yeah maybe the layout is different on the Slate since I’m using the Asus.

  4. Jack Wurm · 2012/02/22 at 18:46 · Reply

    Took the chance to make a video instead, which I seem to suck at.

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/02/22 at 18:51 · Reply

      Haha, oh man I feel completely dumb now. I’ve never noticed those buttons before. Thanks for making the video, I really appreciate it!

  5. Jack Wurm · 2012/02/22 at 18:56 · Reply

    No problem, been wanting to do that for a while now. Maybe I’ll make some more. It’s always cool to see what other people notice and their methods to achieve the same goals.

  6. Ricardo Arganza · 2012/02/23 at 06:46 · Reply

    Hey, Daarken. If that made you feel dumb, listen to this. I discovered my old Wacom Graphire had pressure sensitivity after nearly 3 years of working with it!!! I had no idea what the hell was that and of course that my computer had it disabled. That kind of things happen when you´re self taught.
    That´s why i don´t understand why people is so worried about how many levels of pressure has the EP121!!! XD.

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/02/23 at 10:23 · Reply

      Lol, nice! Well I think most people’s concern about the number of levels of pressure is because they are currently using an Intuos 3 or 4, which have 1024 or 2048 levels of pressure. I think they are concerned that if they downgrade to something that only has 256 they won’t be able to paint as well as they can now. I can obviously tell a difference in the pressure levels, but it isn’t enough to hinder my ability to still create professional work. Sure you might not be able to get the type of range you can on an Intuos, but it is still good.

  7. Ricardo Arganza · 2012/02/23 at 12:00 · Reply

    Totally agree. There´s also another common belief. This days i work as freelance illustrator (not much) and as a model in art schools. In these schools, i see that many students believe tecnology can replace long hours of practice or the knowledge of the basics. Most of they think that if they could afford a 24HD Cintiq and a expensive Mac pro the could be the next Frazzeta.

  8. Jack Wurm · 2012/02/24 at 14:57 · Reply

    Forgot to leave this here the other day. This is only for Samsung 7 Slate users:

    It’s a spin off of PaintDock that has setups for most of the major art programs.

  9. jeremy · 2012/03/09 at 10:01 · Reply

    i just installed the paint dock and it rocks. but im curious, did you replace your isd drive with his? or feel the need to use the secret lab program to tweak your pen curves?
    iknow i get frustrated with how “squiggily” fine lines feel when sketching on the ep121…

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/03/09 at 12:01 · Reply

      I tried using the pressure curves app, but it didn’t seem to make any difference.

  10. CKMoore · 2012/04/21 at 11:41 · Reply

    Hey daarken – does this paint dock work if you have your screen set to “full screen mode”? (without the menu bars).

    I ask because I generally prefer to work without having to have the menu bars open – leaves more space. Plus, if the paint dock works, you could have a short cut on there to bring up the menus or change the screen mode.

    I once made something similar to this using autohotkey (which this uses), but I ran into a problem when using the full screen mode. You can set auto hot key to always be on top – but if photoshop is set to full screen mode, it’s also set as always on top. I couldn’t find a way to control which is actually on top, which means the autohotkey menu would sometimes go behind photoshop.

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/04/25 at 22:04 · Reply

      Yes, I can confirm that it works in full screen mode without the menu bars. I am working on the ASUS EP121 in Photoshop CS5.

  11. David · 2012/05/26 at 20:23 · Reply

    Thank for this tip, it’s great! Although I don’t have the bottom four shortcuts showing up when I use this. I am also using an Asus EP 121, any ideas why?

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/05/27 at 17:18 · Reply

      Mine is customized, so yours might look different.

      • Rusty Shackleford · 2012/06/02 at 15:58 · Reply

        would you know how to resize it? I can’t seem to figure it out. The txt doc only seem to resize the what you see, but not the icons.

  12. Rusty Shackleford · 2012/06/03 at 16:40 · Reply

    nvm I found out….I set the resolution text display to small

  13. Fenris · 2012/06/15 at 08:20 · Reply

    Does it works with the Fujitsu St5112?

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/06/15 at 10:11 · Reply

      In the video I talk about how I wasn’t sure if it would work with the Fujitsu since the Fujitsu isn’t multi-touch. I also mentioned how I saw someone ask about it on the forum that I linked, so you might want to take a look there and see if anyone changed the code to allow it to work with the Fujitsu.

      • Fenris · 2012/06/23 at 17:42 · Reply

        And don’t you know a software that could do that for the Fujitsu?

        • daarken
          daarken · 2012/06/23 at 22:49 · Reply

          No I don’t sorry.

  14. Justin Spice · 2012/07/07 at 23:10 · Reply

    hahaha i was just gonna ask you what to do about not having a key bored when painting on a tablet. I just got the asus and not having my shortcuts really slowed me down. this is perf! you are the man! thinks for all your inspiration information and help!

  15. Justin Spice · 2012/07/07 at 23:26 · Reply

    Also I had a few questions and comparisons. i installed Cs2 on my Eee slate just because its such a lighter program than Cs5 but i continually had trouble with it crashing… I got almost 3.5 hours of nonstop drawing time at full brightness with both WiFi and Bluetooth turned off. not sure how that compares to Cs5. if its no diffident I may switch to cs5. don’t know if you had a preference or any suggestions based on your experience.

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/07/08 at 01:24 · Reply

      My brightness is always turned down to 50%, my bluetooth is always off and sometimes the wifi is off. I probably only get 2-3 hours max, but I would have to time it again to be sure. Personally I like CS5 more than CS2 now because of the features. I never have any problems with crashing.

  16. Justin Spice · 2012/07/08 at 01:38 · Reply

    whooa! idk if i could handle that! i’m hardly ever away from an outlet. but for long drives and things of that nature it sucks… i just got mine like 3 days ago and i’m tempted to get the Series 7… such a beauty. ps thanks for the input!!!

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/07/08 at 10:51 · Reply

      The Samsung Series 7 only has about a 3.5 hour battery life too, so I wouldn’t make the switch thinking it has that much of a better battery life.

  17. Justin Spice · 2012/07/08 at 16:58 · Reply

    Ohhh really! right on! saved me time and money! thanks a ton for all the help man!!!

  18. Juan Carlos Ramos · 2012/08/19 at 19:13 · Reply

    Hello Daarken, just wanted to give many thanks for such an awesome tool! The paint dock has been very useful on my asus tablet. At some point I will post some work from it. I use PaintoolSAI and CS4…In the meantime, you can see some at Again thanks paintdock rocks!

  19. JC Cappelletti · 2012/09/03 at 10:52 · Reply

    I love the PaintDock. It makes the Slate complete. I’ve had great success in making a version for each program I use, with one exception. For some reason, when I launch 3DS Max, only the number keys and the modifier keys respond. All of the letter keys are disabled. Even stranger, the same keys are disabled on the bluetooth keyboard as well, when Max is active. What did I do wrong? Anyone else have this same problem?

  20. Ron Chan · 2012/11/07 at 12:18 · Reply

    Please help!

    I think I messed up computer up pretty bad, and I know barely anything about programming, so I’ve no idea how to fix it :(

    Paintdock seemed to work fine at first, but after a couple installs and restarts, it bugging out on me now. It seems to have given Windows the command to shut down touch for everything but Paintdock, but it isn’t giving it the command to reactivate it. So, touch ONLY works for paintdock, and during the login screen, before windows starts. As soon as windows starts, even without running paintdock, all of my touch is dead.

    I ended up here because I upgraded my Asus 121 to Windows 8. This was a HUGE mistake, as it ruined its ability to handle stylus drawing properly.

    In looking for a solution, I found and tried several different tablet drivers and Paintdock. This helped, but I think there is just no solution to get Windows 8 to work right for drawing with the 121, and that makes me super sad. But now, with the stylus AND the touch malfunctioning, my poor 121 is even more useless.

    I know this is a very specific problem, and that Paintdock wasn’t meant for Windows 8, but any insight you have on this would be greatly appreciated. Thanks very much if you can look into this at all!

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/11/07 at 14:35 · Reply

      Paintdock disables touch everywhere except for Paintdock, that is part of its features so that when you are painting you don’t leave any stray marks. Just close Paintdock and it should enable touch again. If not, just go to your control panel and enable touch manually. Maybe there is a specific conflict with Windows 8, but I haven’t used Windows 8 before so I can’t really give you any help in that regard.

      • Ron Chan · 2012/11/07 at 20:27 · Reply

        Shoot, I wish it was that simple, haha. Windows 8 doesn’t seem friendly to stylus drawing at all. As far as I can tell, they removed a built in way to turn touch on/off, so even though mine is stuck in off, there’s no way for me to turn it back on.

        When I have Paintdock open, it functions as it should, with touch disabled except for the paintdock buttons, but when I close Paintdock, touch does not reactivate, and Windows is stuck that way. Even after a shutdown cycle, it remains in this state, like it got confused and now thinks off should be the default state.

        I’ll continue to poke around Windows for a way to undo this, but I may have to resort to a system restore.

        Let this be a warning to anyone looking to update their Asus EP 121 to Windows 8. Don’t do it! As of now, the Windows and Wacom drivers just don’t get along well enough for it to be usable for art creation.

  21. Ben Donahue · 2012/12/12 at 22:35 · Reply

    Hey Daarkem, I’m currently trying to use this for artrage 3. If I was to make my own buttons, would it be as simple as painting over original buttons or would that mess up the code in some way?

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/12/13 at 12:27 · Reply

      You can edit the buttons in any image editing software to make them look like whatever you want. As long as the button names are the same as the names in the code, you shouldn’t have any problems.

  22. Ben Donahue · 2012/12/13 at 12:46 · Reply

    Nice, thanks for the all the info!

  23. Allan · 2013/02/06 at 19:08 · Reply

    Daarken, do you have any idea how to make paintdock work with PS on a regular pc? I find its shorcuts very good and practical to use with a stylus!

    • daarken
      daarken · 2013/02/06 at 20:17 · Reply

      I think it only works with the Asus and Samsung Series 7. It might work with regular computers, but you would have to change the code in order to make it work. I would just Google it and see if anyone recoded it to work on PCs.

  24. Manuel · 2013/02/16 at 14:27 · Reply

    I have the Samsung Ativ smart PC pro.
    When I run Paintdock, the touch is still enabled and the where ever I click on the paintdock it always only klicks the 2 buttons on top, wether my finger is on the left or right half of the panel. Can I make it work?

    • daarken
      daarken · 2013/02/17 at 00:40 · Reply

      You should check the forum that I linked because I believe the developer posts there. I actually wouldn’t know, especially since I’ve never used the Samsung Ativ before. I do know that this was created specifically for the Asus EP121 and Samsung Series 7, so that could be why it is acting weird on your computer.

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