The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 is a lot of things: from a productivity powerhouse through to an illustrator’s best friend. We take a closer look at the new S Pen stylus accessories for the new Z Fold3, and how you can make the most of it.
If you’ve ever seen or loved a Samsung Galaxy Note device, you know the S Pen: a small stylus that can be used for everything from note taking to a handheld media remote.
Even though there’s no new Galaxy Note this year, Samsung has brought not one but two S Pens to the party for use with the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3.
Here’s what they both do.
What is the S Pen Fold Edition?
The S Pen Fold Edition is the smaller, go-everywhere kind of stylus. If you’re a Galaxy Z Fold3 user who loves to take notes, doodle over images and draw the occasional sketch, you’re going to want to check this out.
It’s slimmer than the S Pen Pro, more portable and features a slim 1.5mm pen tip so it feels more like a real pen than a stylus.
It only works with the Galaxy Z Fold3, and doesn’t use Bluetooth which means that while you don’t have to charge it, you also can’t use it for things like Samsung’s Air Command features.
But because the S Pen can’t be docked with the unit this time, you get a snazzy leather case for your device when you purchase which has a built-in nook for the stylus.
What is the S Pen Pro?
This is the one that I prefer to go for. Especially if you have multiple Samsung devices.
The S Pen Pro is bigger, heftier and more capable than its smaller and more portable sibling.
It has its own battery – with a claimed life of 16 days – and Bluetooth which means it can work cross-device on everything from your Z Fold3 to your compatible Galaxy tablets.
In fact the Bluetooth in the S Pen Pro is so clever, you can smart snip something on your phone, store it in the S Pen Pro and drop it onto another device like a tablet or laptop (as long as they’re both signed into the same Samsung account). Crazy right?
The S Pen Pro is an illustrator’s best friend, and I went and found one to put it to the test.
Tips for getting started with the new S Pen
Over the years I’ve shared my process with my audience online (on Instagram, Youtube and now TikTok), and I want to share how I create work on the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 so you can get the most out of it too!
What inspired my illustration?
I loved the idea of including a glowing pink roofed phone booth as a subtle nod to Telstra in this illo. When I was looking up photos of the phone booths I loved the beacon like glow they had at night – this prompted me to paint a night scene so I could capture it and balance it with the glow of the stars and the moon.
I’ve also based the palette on the Telstra brand colours The rural landscape is a nod to Telstra’s coverage – I think they have the largest coverage out of all the telecom providers, so no matter how far you are, they are there [Ed: we do! Thanks Sha’an!].
While creating, I loved the big, 6.2-inch screen! The bigger the screen, the better when it comes to creating, editing and viewing images and illustrations on a phone.
Also, the S-Pen has always been a mobile game-changer for me. The fact that there is a phone stylus that is pressure and angle sensitive akin to those used on professional graphics tablets is awesome. It means that I have a studio in my pocket AND that I can create wherever I am without also carrying a tablet or sketchbook.
Colour is such an important part of my work and so I always start there by creating a palette to pull from.
Next, create a loose sketch, and bring down the opacity so you can use it as a guide. Fill in the large blocks of colour first.
Then add texture. Drawing with the S-Pen on the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 is a completely different experience.
Unlike a regular stylus, the S-Pen uses pressure sensitivity which means that you can vary the size and look of a line using pressure alone – no fiddling around with settings – we don’t have time for that we have things to make!
Lastly, we’ll add some of the finer details. Voila – your work is ready to share with the world!