Before Photoshop there was… Quantel Paintbox?

Quantel Paintbox; old 1980s tech
(Image credit: Wikimedia)

Photoshop is the mainstay of everyone's digital art toolkit but before Adobe's app dominated everything there was Quantel Paintbox. You may not have heard of it, but Paintbox had some very famous fans back in the 1980s, and now its coming back, kind of.

Artists such as Keith Haring, Larry Rivers and Jennifer Bartlett all experimented with Quantel Paintbox in the 1980s. Before David Hockeny found iPad art was a satisfying way to sketch anywhere, he was splashing pixels around in Quantel's experimental digital painting tech – not an app as such, Paintbox was a chunky standalone computer.

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Ian Dean
Editor, Digital Arts & 3D

Ian Dean is Editor, Digital Arts & 3D at Creativebloq, and the former editor of many leading magazines. These titles included ImagineFX, 3D World and leading video game title Official PlayStation Magazine. In his early career he wrote for music and film magazines including Uncut and SFX. Ian launched Xbox magazine X360 and edited PlayStation World. For Creative Bloq, Ian combines his experiences to bring the latest news on AI, digital art and video game art and tech, and more to Creative Bloq, and in his spare time he doodles in Procreate, ArtRage, and Rebelle while finding time to play Xbox and PS5. He's also a keen Cricut user and laser cutter fan, and is currently crafting on Glowforge and xTools M1.