10 Ways People Are Using The iPad To Create Content, Not Just Consume It

Rana Sobhany

One of the first, lame criticisms of Apple’s iPad was that it would only be useful for consuming content, not creating it.


Sure, the iPad is great for reading web pages and watching videos. But it has also become a very potent, very cool device for being creative.

Its creative use cases range from a DJ kit — that’s iPad DJ Rana Sobhany pictured — to a tool for making amazing illustrations and music.

And app developers and artists are creating new uses all the time. Let us know if we’ve missed something cool.

Amazing paintings

Via art site Koikoikoi, here's Brooklyn-based painter David Jon Kassan using an iPad to paint.

Smule CEO Jeff Smith tells us that the Magic Piano app for the iPad has the highest engagement of all its products -- roughly 3X its engagement for some of its biggest iPad hits. Users have played 'Twinkle Twinkle Little Star' more than 735,000 times.

Via Robert Scoble, here's a video of pianist Lang Lang playing on Magic Piano.

Writer and illustrator Debbie Ohi is writing a novel on her iPad

Debbie tells us that she has been testing a number of iPad writing apps, which you can read about here, for her iPad novel project.

She also made this drawing on her iPad, of a friend reading on an iPad.

And, she says, 'I also use my iPad for writing songs for my music group to learn, character sketches for a picture book I'm illustrating (written by Michael Ian Black, coming out from Simon & Schuster in 2012), performing music (I'm going to be jamming with a chamber music group next year) and MUCH more.'

Amazing stop-motion images made out of light

Check out this amazing stop-motion imaging collaboration between creative agency Dentsu's London office and design studio Berg, via Wired

Making Future Magic: iPad light painting from Dentsu London on Vimeo.

Rana Sobhany, the world's first iPad DJ

Rana has spent the last few months travelling around the world, performing as an iPad DJ. Here's a video she did with Robert Scoble explaining her setup.

Photo editing

With Apple's iPad camera kit accessory, you can bring your digital photos right into your iPad, and edit them with apps like this one, Photogene. Here's a demo, via Chris Pirillo:

Recording music: Not ideal, but possible!

Here's what it looks like to record the vocal track into an iPad, using an app called Studio Track. Much more about the project here.

Using the iPad to exhibit art

Here's the first roving iPad art exhibit, by Claudio Arango, from this April:

Blogging and Tumblr-ing

Famous Tumblr user 'Poobah' -- OK, he's my father; read more about him here -- spent the summer on the road, doing a lot of Tumblr blogging from his iPad. He says Tumbleroo (pictured) is a pretty good app. (Note: Some of his content may not be suitable for your office.)

For the sake of research, I've also written the text of this post's mainbar on my iPad. (I can't do most of the production work on an iPad because our CMS doesn't support it, and the iPad doesn't have enough memory to manage all the browser windows I would need.)

Sheet music

You can display (and, in theory, also create) sheet music on an iPad, which means never dropping a big paper book while you're turning pages again. And, similarly, some apps allow you to use the iPad as a teleprompter.

BONUS: Of course, the iPad DJ needs an iPad in her music video

Yes, that's my face in the video. (The first face once the iPad boots up.)

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