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What Drawing Art Program Is Best For Artists

Free Vs Paid Drawing Art Program For Art

The benefit of a free drawing art program is that it is free.  The downside is that there are limitations to its capabilities and user experience.  On the flip side of this are paid art programs.

Paid art drawing programs can be expensive but they offer more options with a better ux.  If you are on a tight budget I might can help you discover an option that will benefit your artwork.

These systems are necessary for digital art and many forms of new media art.  Ultimately the end product is often used in conjunction with other systems for animation or gcode output.

Free Drawing Art Programs That Work

You will not find this option in the best of lists online.  I spoke with several freelance artists and discovered that in terms of a free drawing program they prefer ibisPaint.

While it may be limited in brushes the user can watch ads in order to gain new ones.  There are also options of being able to save the files outside of the program for distribution.

A key to this art program being liked by artists is that it allows for pressure sensitivity.  This is pending you have updated your Mac or Android versions to allow for this.  Older system software will need to be updated.

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How does ibis compare to Gimp?  Gimp is truly free but it can be more complex for some users.  How does this work?

Ibis will have near 15,000 brushes that can be obtained whether “earned” or purchased.  Gimp on the other hand is a little unique.

With Gimp you can use any brush from any system and import it as long as it is an ABR format.  This means that Gimp can use Photoshop brushes to create art.  Now you begin to see its flexibility.

So what is the problem with Gimp?  It is not naturally intuitive.  For example where Ibis has pressure sensitivity already turned on, it will have to be configured in Gimp.

Brushes are easier to implement in Ibis whereas you may need to import brushes into Gimp.  Due to this some users find Gimp to be a more complex art program.  You really need to dig into the software to get the most out of it.

Of course, there is Clip Studio Paint, Krita, Sketchpad, and Adobe Illustrator.  Each of these have strengths and weaknesses, many of the best features will be behind paywalls.  Thus the problem of this idea of “free”.

Here is where Gimp really shines if you can learn its quirks and adapt to the interface importing things you need.

Paid Drawing Art Programs That Perform For Artists

Drawing art programs that are paid aps can range widely in cost.  I will give you two options that offer the most.

If you are on a budget give a try.  This drawing program will run ten dollars but offer the widest range of drawing options for the money.

The problem with procreate is range and power.  It also is not as flexible as Gimp but for many artists it does not have to be.  It offers a better ux with intuitive understanding in ease of use.

The other end of this paid spectrum is the full version of Adobe Illustrator.  The benefit to Adobe is its full range and power.  It has little in terms of limitations although it can run hundreds of dollars depending on what you need.

Note that if you decide to participate within art courses of any kind that a specific art program may be required. Adobe is a popular program to use and a artist can find specific courses on using it.

How To Determine Which Art Drawing Program Is Right For You

It is not as simple as looking at the software and trying a few to see what fits you best.  There are a lot of other factors to consider. 

This is especially true when you begin to work with aspects such as vectors to gcode or animation.

Gcode is needed when you are taking an image and turning it into an electrical output to a physical machine.  The machine then cuts or creates a physical piece of art.  Notably cnc mills or 3d printing uses these kinds of code.

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If you create animation with systems like Maya or Blender, you will want to use an art program that works well with it.  For example, you can import a 3d model from Maya into Procreate to paint it by dragging and dropping the file.

Why would you need these options?  It really comes down to flexibility.  You always want your systems to be as cross compatible as possible.

There will always be those moments where one piece of software will do something better, or in a way you desire, than others.  This is especially true when you are outputting an image into electrical signals via gcode.

To determine which art program is right for you one will need to consider the full range of what you need.  From inception of the art to its final production each transition by process needs to be considered.

Art Drawing Program For Graphics Tablet

If you are a graphic artists then you will know what a Wacom tablet is.  These are great tools for digital art but they do have their own issues.

The core problem behind the Graphic Wacom tablet is the proprietary software running it.  This places you into a sandbox where many limitations exist.

Understand that generally speaking the average artist will have no problem residing within its native art programs.  Those who are reaching beyond will need an alternative.

MyPaint, designed by Martin Renold, will allow you to reach beyond those limitations.  The art program is designed to work with graphic tablets rather than be an add on for something like a pc.

The foundation of the drawing program is based within Linux so its user interface is a little different than Windows users will be accustomed to.  Also due to its flexibility it may take a little more time to master.

The biggest perk of this art program is that the art brushes the app uses is open source.  This means that you can download packages used by other artists freely.

This will allow you to break free of the proprietary software but be willing to face a steeper learning curve in the process.

Which Drawing Art Program Is Best For Beginners And Children?

Artists that are learning new media art will not need advanced art programs.  Artweaver for example has a child friendly interface that is easier to learn with.  This is better for kids than other drawing programs I have mentioned thus far.

A next step forward for kids would be Microsoft Paint 3D.  This too is great for kids to learn with.  It is limited in options and abilities thus I would not recommend it for more advanced artists.

Both of these will expose necessary learning fundamentals to children allowing them to understand needed concepts.  The limited range of the art program will prevent them from going too far and being overwhelmed.

Beginning digital artists that are older I would still suggest Gimp or Adobe products.  While these are more advanced they are also incredibly well documented online.

Tutorials will guide you through the many learning curves and options which the art program possesses.  There are also some online courses one could take for these systems.

Are Web Based Art Drawing Programs Any Good?

There are web based art drawing programs such as Kleki.  The greatest issue with these systems are their limitations.  These limitations are in every regard from interface to brushes and near zero effects.

The web based programs remind me of the old school Microsoft paint that may allow simple drawings but nothing more.  Any aspiring artist would be better off downloading any of the free drawing programs available from many different brands.

Digital art has become a popular format to make money in art. It is for this reason that an artist should use the best that they can find. Competition can be high especially within fan art or concept art.

Should All Artists Use Art Drawing Programs?

Traditional artists may see little use of art drawing programs.  Nevertheless, should traditional artists use them?  I say yes.

Why?  Speed of building future art concepts and developing further artistic creativity is at the core reasons behind them.  These drawing programs require little investment and allow an artist to quickly create potential visualization of a concept.

This will allow an artist to not only save time, but also materials and canvas.  If changes to the concept need to be made it is easier to alter the digital representation than a physical canvas.

Art programs are no longer limited to those who work with 3d modeling or gcode based systems.  Animation has become easy for hobbyist or amateurs to partake in.

Furthermore, these basic drawing programs offer more than enough power to give traditional artists enough tools to build concepts for their canvas art.

Learning by copying, tracing art, or using key elements in production can be done with ease. This is a revolutionary art medium that all can benefit from.

Which Drawing Program Should Artists Stay Away From?

Avoid any drawing program that wants to nickel and dime you to death.  In the end you pay more than if you would have bought the full version of Adobe Illustrator.

Each item you need or use should not be behind an individual pay wall.  Add on packages should also offer real value to the overall system rather than really granting you access to one needed feature.

Avoid any drawing program which does not allow for cross compatibility to other systems.  It is not likely that you will forever remain within one sandbox.  You will need other art programs.

You should be able to save your art into multiple formats.  This should be a standard practice with every digital work of art you produce.  Different formats of the original allow for greater future flexibility.

Any art program that does not allow you to save your work locally to your machine is a system I would not use.  Clearly this removes any flexibility or cross compatibility.