Happy weekend, everyone! Today I wanted to share my absolute favorite design tools. These three programs I’ve found to be the most user-friendly, inexpensive (if costing anything at all), and FUN to use! I want to first say, I am no expert. My background is dabbling in web development. I’ve tried using Photoshop, and it’s a wonderful program, but I found it tough to get the hang of for me personally. Some people might be thinking, “what?! Photoshop is simple.” However, I wanted to share what I use to design digital prints because I know if I can easily use them, anyone can! (And if you’re great with all the other programs, I commend you!)
So let’s get started!
Canva is the bomb for designing pretty much anything. There is a version for iPad, however I prefer to use Canva on my desktop. In my opinion it’s just easier to use with a mouse. You can create marketing tools, picture mockups (like what you see above) logos, signs, flyers, invitations, templates, the sky is the limit. I personally pay $9.95 per month to get the Pro version, but I wanted access to everything they offer. However, you can do SO so much with the free version as well, and that’s strictly what I used for a long time.
The only thing canva doesn’t have is a drawing feature. You can create some beautiful artwork though using shapes, and elements, and a bazillion fonts (you can even upload your own fonts to use). The next two design tools I’m going to talk about are used for actual drawing.
With Canva you can also edit photos. My favorite thing to use Canva for is uploading art creations, and adding it to frames in beautiful room mockups like what you see above. If you’re a creative type, this is such a fun program to mess around with!
The next one is:
I love using Procreate on my iPad (it’s called Procreate Pocket). This drawing app is really amazing. I know there are paid versions, but I can simply create everything I want with the free version. You have access to a million different brushes, color palettes, textures, you name it! I know a lot of people like to use the Apple Pencil with this program, but shhh don’t tell anyone, I don’t even use a stylus. This is the program where I create a lot of my abstract art prints, like these:
If you google Procreate creations sometime, you will see absolutely gorgeous creations that people have made. It’s truly a creators dream and is super easy to use!
I also use Sketches on my iPad or even my phone. I don’t prefer to use the desktop version because you can’t really draw that way. I’ve sat in waiting rooms before while making art creations on my phone with both Sketches and Procreate! So fun. Sketches is similar to Procreate, but they both have different features too. It’s mostly just finding which you like better, and I chose to just have them both. I paid a one time $5.99 payment to get the upgraded version of Sketches and have access to all the tools, but you certainly don’t have to!
Here a few art prints I designed with Sketches on my phone!
The great thing about all three of these programs is that the free versions give you access to so much creative potential! You can definitely make awesome designs with the free versions, and that’s something I love about them all.
I hope this blog post has shared some helpful tips for my fellow designers! As my favorite saying goes, “a creative life is a happy life!” Let me know what you love to use! 🙂