Amaziograph isn’t a pro-level app, but it’s one of those apps that really shines on the iPad Pro. Pick up an Apple Pencil, spend $2 on Amaziograph, and start to re-discover the fun of creating tessellations and mirrored images in just a fraction of the time it takes to create them manually.
The mechanics of Amaziograph are dead-simple to learn. You choose one of 10 initial grid types, each with different kinds of mirror or tiling effects. Then you just start drawing and watch as your strokes are multiplied across your screen. This is one of those apps where the act of creation is really part of the experience. There’s a genuinely soothing effect to seeing how your drawing can come to life as you add a little line here, a circle there, and finish things off with a blast of colour. It can feel like you’re drawing with 10 of your greatest clones, and they’re all perfectly in sync with you.
The iPad Pro’s graphical prowess is definitely on show here: I’ve drawn as fast as I could all over the screen with 25+ different hexagons, and I didn’t feel any slowdown. In fact, I filled up the screen with ink before I had a chance to see if the tablet would drop any frames or show any signs of lag.
The app is fully Pencil compatible, and I’d argue it’s really meant for the Pencil. You can draw lines with your finger, of course, but it just feels clumsy in comparison, especially when you realize there are no tools in the app for creating straight lines. You’re free to adjust details like stroke width, colour, opacity, and softness, but drawing straight lines or creating rigid shapes is all up to your hand-eye coordination.
If you’re looking for a little more customization beyond the initial 10 patterns, you can adjust the positioning and density of the grid. You can push the
I didn’t buy this app for practical purposes: but purely based on the “that’s awesome!” factor of seeing on the App Store for the first time. However, if I had to come up with a semi-practical use for Amaziograph, it would be for wallpapers.
This app makes it so easy to make abstract patterns and colour in the white spaces so that making a new Holiday wallpaper for my iPad Pro took just a few minutes. The trouble is that I have to resist the temptation to make the patterns too complex, otherwise it becomes impossible to read my homescreen.
It’s easy to draw bugs in Amaziograph, but it’s also fairly easy to find them. In my few hours of drawing, I’ve found multiple instances where the controls simply froze up and wouldn’t respond to any touch. I had to open multitasking mode and kill Amaziograph before it would take any further input. This has actually been a very rare circumstance on iOS 10, and so it can be quite jarring to experience, especially in an app that is otherwise very fluid. You don’t seem to need a particularly busy canvas to freeze Amaziograph either: just tweaking the grid or colour controls can be enough.
Just Buy It
There are a few little problems with Amaziograph, but it’s such a preposterously fun and simple app to spend time with, that it’s well worth the $2 purchase. This is a fantastic showcase of how great a tablet app can be, and it really shines on the form factor. I don’t think an equivalent app would have been nearly as much fun on an iPhone or Mac — this is something you want to enjoy on a great big touchscreen, and preferably with an Apple Pencil in-hand.