An Interview with Hansol Huh, creator of SketchTime
In the past weeks, I was lucky to beta-test SketchTime on the iPad and the iPhone. Since I have been knowing Hansol Huh, the developer behind the app for a while, I asked him for a quick interview. Hansol lives and works in Seoul, South Korea.
Hansol, what do you see right now when you look outside your window?
That’s very saddening question. Seoul is packed with too many people, buildings and traffic. I hate this city. I can see just cold winter from my office window.
Ok, next to something more warming Tell us a little bit about the idea behind SketchTime.
SketchTime is an iOS app aiming to be handy for quick sketches and taking notes. I made this app for everyone who love scribbling and sketching often anywhere anytime. I really like this quote by Antoine de Saint Exupéry:
“perfection is finally attained not when there is no longer anything to add, but when there is no longer anything to take away”
I just wanted to make the simplest sketch app in the world which has only the absolute necessary features and for the artists to use them easily and quickly. In particular, I hope this app will become useful for designers, artists, architects, and cartoonists, and that it keeps evolving from their needs.
What was your personal motivation to develop SketchTime?
I am a person who sketches and scribbles very often even in a bus and subway. So I think I need some sketch app which can replace my moleskine. There are already plenty of painting and note-taking apps out there. But I couldn’t find the right app for quick sketches. Full featured painting apps have too many features and options to control. (For example, If I want to change the size of pen, I have to tap a pen option button, change the size in slide bar, close the option panel, then finally I can draw with a different pen size. This can be too tiresome sometimes for quick sketches.) And most note taking apps are focused on only taking notes. They have no zoom control or various pen size. Moreover, some of them are a bit sluggish. With these reasons in mind, I wanted to make a simple and light-weight sketch app for myself and people just like me.
How important is community feedback for you during development?
It’s absolutely important to me. We designers and/or developers tend to think they do understand users, but it’s hard to play both roles. 3 guys (YongWoo, Simone, and Benjamin) have helped me to beta test this app. They’ve told me what they feel uncomfortable with, and what they would need. And watched their using behavior through their drawings. For example, square pen tip and marker blend mode was requested by testers, and I added those features.
You started working 100% as an IOS developer now, and you already have quite a range of art apps out now, can you share any next plans?
The next is “Typedrawing V3.0″. I’ve been putting off the update of TypeDrawing for a long time. It’s time to update it now. It will be not just a update. It will be a huge upgrade. You’ll see I am planning to release V3.0 no later than this April.
What do you think about the mobile art movement and do you know of any art.shows or meetings in the asian area?
I think It’s still in the beginning but it is growing fast. Anyone can start to draw and paint without real brushes and papers, and her paintings are saved as data. These are big merits compared to traditional fine art. Data could be copied, regenerated, and mixed. They can be evolved like live cells. And this movement and evolution keep motivating and inspiring users and developers.
I can’t see any strong activities yet in asia. (I don’t know exactly) I think it’s mainly because we asian don’t have common language, like english for american and european. In Seoul, there are some small activities, but they are still in their infancy.
(This interview was done via mail. All artwork by Hansol Huh)