Review: Voice Painter
Yet another graphics program, but with a twist!
This application takes its cue from a combination of the various paiting program, with some of the fireworks programs thrown in, and a dash of Ocarina tossed in for good measure.
Voice painter starts with a simple black screen, and a few buttons on the bottom. Three of these buttoms represent that various paiting modes, which I describe as "smooth", "jagged", and "in-between". There also is a down arrow that is used to save your drawing.
So you start to take you finger and draw on the screen, but nothing is happening! "Damn!" you yell, only to find that the program starts drawing in response to sound. (Okay, that didn't happen to me, but it would be cool if it did).
Any sounds triggers the drawing. Clapping, talking, singing, even just blowing into the mic will draw some pattern on the screen. Depending on the drawing mode you have chosen, the lines that are drawn are relatively smooth (curves, round edge), jagged (sharp angles and turns), in between. Stop talking and the drawing stops. Start again and a new line is drawn.
There is some perecived response to things like beat, volume, and tone of the sound, but I wasn't able to discern a strong correlation. I made identical sounds and tones at times (or at least what seemed to be the same tones and sounds) and I got two different kinds of lines being produced. On the other hand, if you do something with a clear beat, on every down-beat you can notice a change in direction of the line that is being drawn. And when I would whistle a constant note, the drawing line just sort of circled around and around until I change the pitch or something. So it does detect changes in the tone - it seems that there simply isn't a consistant response.
Which is sort of sad - it would be cool to be able to try to control the drawing by changing the volume and/or the pitch. As it is you are sort of at the whim of some random generator that will respond to you music - you can still create some nice images, but you aren't controlling it too much.
While using this program, I thought it would be really cool to use it as some sort of iTunes visualizer, so I started up a song, and then entered the program. Unfortunately, music will not run in the background while using this app, so you can't use it to create cool visual effects for your songs.
I would like to see the implementation of some more drawing modes. Maybe some sort of starburst effect, which would be cool with heaver beats or percussion sounds. Or maybe being able to choose the colors you want - that would be rather interesting as well.
Pros: A cool idea for a program, can get some really cool images
Cons: Can't work with music playing in iTunes, limited ability to "control" the drawing with sound
All in all, I really like the idea of this app. It takes the familiar idea of a drawing program and twists it around. And I think it is off to a good start...it just leaves me wanting more. More control, being able to use iTunes music playing, more options. As such, I think this is a great start to the application, and I really hope they continue to develop it. And at only $.99, it is almost worth purchasing it so that you can get any future updates! Three and a half stars (out of five) for a great start.
* = No redeeming qualities or features, probably not worth it even if it is free
** = Few redeeming qualities, or is simply isn't worth the price
*** = Some good features but also some clear flaws.
**** = A solid app, worth the money if interested, a few flaws or problems or slightly overpriced
***** = Top of the line app, no problems or drawbacks.
Price is factored into the ratings. Ratings are lowered if I feel the price of the app outweighs the benefits/enjoyment/features it provides. Likewise, an app that is a good value for the money will have a higher rating.