10 Best Free Drawing Apps You Should Try!

Learn about 10 best free drawing apps and how to choose the right one to bring your designer-dreams to life!
free drawing app adobe fresco screenshot

Artists and designers, gather up as we have some of the best free drawing apps for you! Free drawing apps come in handy a lot when you want to practice your skills and create magical art pieces on a tight budget. 

But with so many options in the market, it is hard to choose a free drawing app. That’s why we have a complete guide and 10 best detailed app reviews. So, let’s dive right in!

Why Should You Use a Free Drawing App?

Free drawing apps provide a useful platform for artists on a tight budget. Artists and graphic designers can sketch, create, and paint with limitless creativity on drawing apps. Many of the free drawing apps have similar features to the paid ones. So, they prove to be highly accommodating for beginner artists. 

The free-of-cost aspect is the greatest reason designers favor free drawing apps. But that’s not all!

The thing is:

All the free drawing apps we have reviewed have advanced features to create endless designs without paying a penny.

While apps like Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator are a great investment for high-end projects, free drawing apps are no less. They are great for beginners who want to learn and practice design and art. Also, artists on a budget can thrive in their careers through free drawing apps.

How Do Free Drawing Apps Work?

Free drawing software has invaluable tools to edit, paint, sketch, draw, and create different formats of designs. Features like curving tools, brushes, shapes, and paint-filling, assist designers in creating high-quality art pieces in less time.

Drawing app software provides accuracy and preciseness to the design due to modern implications used in software creation. 

Whether an artist wants to start a project from scratch or edit an image, drawing software always comes in handy. Image-editing features like filters, drawing, painting, and erasing tools ease your tasks to a considerable level.

Evaluate to Choose the Best Free Drawing App

Imagine you start using a free drawing app. Your design is going great until it lacks a feature that will take the art piece to the next level. 

Sounds frustrating, right? Save yourself from such a situation by choosing the best free drawing app!

With so many free drawing apps in the market, it can be hard to make the right choice. So, how can you choose the best free drawing app worth your time and effort? Consider the factors mentioned below before choosing drawing software for your designs!

Compatibility and Requirements

Not all free drawing apps work on every device. If you are a designer who prefers to use an iPad, the app must be compatible. Look for software compatible with your device type (phone, iPad, tablet, laptop, etc.) as well as the operating system of your device. (Linux, Chrome, iOS, Mac, Windows, etc.) 

Remember to ensure your device is sturdy enough to run heavy-free drawing software. Otherwise, it will be laggy and hard to create supreme designs.

User Interface

A friendly interface is as important as having good skills while designing. You should focus on your design rather than finding the relevant features. 

For beginner graphic designers, a user-friendly interface plays a big role. Look for apps with easy-to-use functions and features!

Functionality and Features

Do you want to edit images on the drawing app or create designs from scratch? Do you want to use PDF, JPEG, or SVG files on the app? Are you looking for advanced editing and designing features? 

Consider all these relevant questions before choosing a free drawing software for your designs. It would be annoying to find out later that the app lacks the features you need for your piece.

Range of Features

Anyone from the design industry knows how important it is to have customizable features with a wide range. Preciseness and accuracy are only possible when you can customize the sizes of tools such as brushes, pens, and pencils. 

A drawing app should go beyond drawing and have features that assist you in the process. Only then is it useful to use a digital art platform. Layer blending modes and working within different layers, etc., are some of the features to look out for in a drawing app.

Keyboard shortcuts can be of service while designing. Taking your cursor from one feature to the other takes substantial time. But keyboard shortcuts reduce the time to a considerable level helping you focus on your designs only!

Real User Reviews

Technological advancement allows us to search for real user reviews of any app or software online. Use different forums, groups, and YouTube videos to get reviews of different drawing apps. This will help you choose and find an app with your required features.

Best Free Drawing Apps

We all know about some of the best paid drawing apps but what about free ones? Free drawing apps are quite common among new graphic designers who don’t have hefty budgets. And they are actually a great choice with all the amazing features they come with. 

That’s why we have reviewed the 10 best free drawing apps. These reviews are based on intensive research considering important factors like user interface, accessibility, and features. So, let’s take a look at some worthy free drawing apps!

Best Free Drawing Apps (At a Glance – Top 4)

FeaturesKritaFrescoGIMPInkscape
Open-SourceYesNoYesYes
CompatibilityWindows, Mac, Linux, ChromeOS, AndroidWindows, iOSMac, Windows, LinuxWindows, Linux, Mac
File FormatJPEG, PDF, GIF, SVG, PSD, PDFJPEG, PNG, GIF, PDF, PSDSVG, PNG, JPEG, GIF, TGA, MNG, PSD, PDFPNG, JPG, SVG, AI, PDF, PSD, EPS
Advanced FeaturesAvailableAvailableAvailableAvailable
Beizer ToolAvailableNot AvailableAvailableAvailable
Brush Features100+ Brushes10 Categories including Live BrushParametric and Raster Brushes. Can add custom ones too.Custom and 3D Brushes
Best ForAnimations, comics, and artwork on beginner and intermediate levelBeginner and intermediate graphic designers.Professional editing and designing.Vector graphics designing for any level of designers.

Best Free Drawing Apps – Let’s Dive Deeper!

1. Krita

Best beginner-friendly free drawing app for animations, comics, and artwork. 

  • Key Features: Open-Source, Compatible with Android, Windows, Linux, MacOS, and ChromeOS, Supports SVG, PSD, PDF, etc, HDR Support, Bezier Curves, S Pen Gesture Support
  • Price: Free 
  • Rating: 4.5/5
  • Pros: Intuitive layout, vast range of brushes, amazing animation capabilities.
  • Cons: Crampy interface on small screens, frequent updates creating usability problems.

Krita, an incredibly feature-loaded art platform, is any artist’s dream app. The app is compatible with both PC and Android. So, whether you use a tablet or laptop for drawing, you can do it using Krita.

Using Krita, artists can create high-quality and unique art pieces, animations, comics, and illustrations. Features like 100+ brushes, HDR support, Beizer tool, and amazing color selection make it a high-end free drawing app.

Professional artists created Krita to help other designers create awesome designs without spending a penny. And this is visible in the precise detailing of the software. One of the notable features includes keyboard shortcuts so you can focus more on your design than the interface. 

Krita supports various file formats such as JPEG, PNG, SVG, PSD, PDF, and GIF. So, you can edit any sort of file using Krita. 

Why You Should Consider: Krita has many image creation and editing features for art, comics, and animations for freelance and beginner graphic designers. 

Visit Website here!

2. Microsoft Paint 3D

Best basic drawing app for 3D pieces for beginner designers. 

  • Key Features: Compatible with Windows, Pre-Built 3D Models, Multiple Finishes, Supports PNG, JPG, 3MF, ICO, GIF, FBX, etc.
  • Price: Free
  • Rating: 4/5
  • Pros: User-friendly interface, easy 3D modeling for beginners.
  • Cons: Doesn’t work on any OS other than Windows, limited features

One of the most common free drawing apps, Microsoft Paint 3D, turns your doodles into 3D artwork. It has a blank canvas where endless designs are possible. Microsoft has made 3D designing super easy for even beginner designers.

Check out this beginner tutorial for Paint 3D!

The touch-compatible user interface makes designing fast and effortless. Features like stickers, texts, brushes, remixing, and canvases, are all available.

Paint 3D’s magic selection tools let you remove unwanted objects from an image. It is equipped with an eraser and restorer tool to make your image as precise as possible. Other image editing features include brightness, color tuning, contrast, cropping, and rotating. Considering this, the image editing tools aren’t as advanced as other drawing apps.

It also comes with a pre-built 3D model, or you can create a shape from scratch – it’s up to you! The shape can acquire different finishes, such as shiny, glossy, or matte.

Why You Should Consider: Designers looking for a free 3D art creation app easy-to-use interface should consider Microsoft Paint 3D. 

Get Paint3D Here!

3. Adobe Fresco

Best for drawing on tablets, iPad, or Surface with amazing tools.

  • Key Features: Supports PNG, JPEG, PDF, and PSD files, Compatible with Windows and iOS, Live Brush, Open-Source, 19 Languages.
  • Price: Free, or $9.99/month subscription
  • Rating: 4.6/5
  • Pros: Realistic image creations, tons of brush options, and the digital watercolor feature are amazing.
  • Cons: Lacks some functionalities, Photoshop-like image editing is not available.

Designers can nail magical drawings using Adobe Fresco. It is a free drawing app with amazing advanced features.

Despite being a free app, Fresco’s advanced features, like live brushes, realistic brushes, and customizable tools, make it best for beginners and professionals. Realistic brushes allow you to add digital watercolor effects and adding depth to your artwork. 

The intuitive interface makes it easy to use and runs smoothly on your iPad. It is compatible with Windows and iOS devices. Also, Adobe Fresco supports JPEG, PNG, PDF, and PSD files. 

Paired best with a Surface Pen, you can use Adobe Fresco to create realistic art pieces. 

One demerit to note about Fresco is the limited features in the free version. For endless features, you have to buy one of their plans.

Why You Should Consider: Beginners and intermediate-level graphic designers looking for free basic editing and image creation tools for realistic artwork should give Fresco a go!

Check Fresco Here!

4. GIMP

Best free high-end drawing app comparable to Adobe Photoshop.

  • Key Features: Open-Source, Compatible with Mac, Windows, and Linux, supports both vector and raster files, 100+ Plug-Ins.
  • Price: Free
  • Rating: 4.3/5
  • Pros: Can add various plug-ins to compensate for lacking features, good community support, and precise designs for high-end art pieces.
  • Cons: Works a little slow.

GIMP isn’t like your regular free drawing apps. Its advanced features are comparable with Adobe Photoshop and come without a price. 

GIMP is one of the best free drawing apps for graphic designers of any level. It is suitable for professional design work with features like clone, airbrush, plug-in additions, alpha backgrounds, filters, layers, etc.

Compatible with various operating systems like Mac, Windows, and Linux, you can use GIMP to create magic! 

You can save images through GIMP in different file formats like SVG, PNG, JPEG, GIF, TGA, MNG, PSD, PDF, etc. So, you can work on both vector and raster images on GIMP.

All the features are easy to figure out, making it suitable for beginners. It comes with many customizable features easing the image creation and editing process for designers.

Why You Should Consider: GIMP is a perfect alternative to Photoshop for any level of graphic design with high-end editing and designing features. 

Check GIMP here!

5. Sketchbook

Free drawing app with highly accessible features.

  • Key Features: Compatible with Windows, Android, and iOS, Supports, JPG, PNG, GIF, PSD, and TIFF, 72 DPI Limit, 10 layers for 6000x4500px.
  • Price: Free or $19.99 One-Time Subscription
  • Rating: 4.6/5
  • Pros: Amazing pressure response, French curves for fashion designing, Great symmetry tools.
  • Cons: Limited DPI.

Sketchbook is a modern drawing app for doodling and sketching random ideas and high-quality designs. It is a perfect app for amateurs and freelancers. 

Sketchbook has versatile features like brush strokes, perspective guides, French curves, and image editing tools. 

All the features are arranged in a clean and easily accessible design, making it highly user-friendly. Compatible with iOS, Windows, and Android devices, every artist can take advantage of Sketchbook. 

You can add a maximum of 10 layers, which is reasonable for any artist. Not to forget the customizable brushes and symmetry tools for highly precise designs.

Note: Some features of Sketchbook are only available in the premium version.

Why You Should Consider: Interior, textile, and fashion designers and professional artists looking for an accessible drawing app should try Sketchbook.

Visit Sketchbook Website here!

6. Medibang Paint

Easy-to-use free drawing app comparable to Photoshop.

  • Key Features: Supports PNG, JPG, MDP, GIF, and PSD, Magic Wand tool, Pressure Sensitivity.
  • Price: Free or $2.5-$9/month for 20-300 GB
  • Rating: 4.3/5
  • Pros: Top-tier brushes, a wide selection of features, and pre-installed fonts.
  • Cons: Requires premium version for some features.

Packed with tools, Medibang Paint’s free version is worth mentioning here. Compatible with Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS, the free drawing app allows users to create digital art like a pro.

Medibang Paint saves your work into the cloud, so you don’t lose any designs. Also, you can pull up a whole asset library to create personal designs. 

The drawing app has various features similar to Photoshop, such as comic panels, selection tools, a magic wand, a gradient, an eye dropper, etc. With the magic wand, you can remove unnecessary details or objects from your images for a clean design.

The functioning of every feature of Medibang Paint is flawless, including the pressure sensitivity. However, you do need Stylus to enable this feature.

The desktop version of the software has keyboard shortcuts to increase your speed. It proves to have a user-friendly interface as well.

One thing to remember is that some features are only available in the paid version.

Why You Should Consider: Medibang Paint is perfect for intermediate and beginner designers for professional artwork and designs using features similar to Photoshop.

Check Medibang Paint here!

7. Inkscape

Best free vector graphics drawing app for professional designers.

  • Key Features: Open-Source, Supports PNG, JPG, SVG, AI, PDF, PSD, and EPS files, Compatible with Windows, Linux, and Mac,3D Box Tool, Vector Graphics.
  • Price: Free
  • Rating: 4.4/5
  • Pros: Power tools for professional-level designs, phenomenal user interface, light-weight software.
  • Cons: A bit laggy.

When it comes to professional graphic designing for websites, apps, and businesses, Inkscape is your best bet. Unlike some free drawing apps, Inkscape works for both vector and raster images. So, you can create high-quality and professional-level designs with Inkscape.

It is a lightweight software with a wide array of features making it one of the best free drawing apps. 

Some notable features include text tools, calligraphy tools, Beizer curves, 3D box tools, shapes tools, editing through nodes, etc. The 3D box tools allow you to create 3D designs effortlessly. You can also add fonts to Inkscape for custom texts.

As Inkscape is a vector graphics drawing app, you can create highly scalable designs through it. The files are also lightweight, unlike raster images. 

Inkscape supports various file formats like SVG, PNG, JPEG, PSD, PDF, EPS, and AI. It is compatible with Windows, Linux, and Mac. 

Why You Should Consider: Graphic designers looking for a free vector graphics drawing app should consider Inkscape for web and app designs.

Visit Inkscape Website here!

8. Artflow

Turn your device into a canvas using Artflow’s free version.

  • Key Features: Open-Source, Compatibility with Mac, iOS, Windows, and Android, Supports PSD, PNG, and JPG files, Infinite Undo and Redo, 300 DPI.
  • Price: Free o $6 One-Time payment for the Pro plan.
  • Rating: 4.2/5
  • Pros: Straightforward functions, cleanest brushes for precise drawings, amazing blur tool.
  • Cons: Limited touch gestures.

Artflow is a phenomenal free drawing app for beginners and hobbyists. The user-friendly interface allows any level of artist to use the app without any confusion.

The free version of Artflow has enough features for advanced-level artwork. Some notable features include 80+ brushes, infinite undo, opacity control, pressure sensitivity, blending layers, a maximum of 13 layers, etc. 

The features of Artflow aren’t clustered on the screen, providing it a clean design. 

You can add a maximum of 13 players with 300 DPI – probably an artist’s dream feature.

Not to forget the keyboard shortcuts Artflow allows. These shortcuts save a lot of time and help you focus on your design more than ever. 

Artflow is compatible with various operating systems like Mac, iOS, Android, and Windows. So, you can turn any of your devices into a real-life canvas.

Why You Should Consider: Best for beginner-friendly features and interface for hobbyists to create professional art pieces.

Get Artflow here!

9. Artweaver

Beginner-friendly best free drawing app with advanced-level features for Windows.

  • Key Features: Compatible with Windows, Customisable Brushes, Supports PNG, JPEG, GIF, PSD, and BMP, Team Collaboration.
  • Price: Free or $41.16 for the Plus version.
  • Rating: 4.2/5
  • Pros: Has plug-in support, and a wide array of brushes.
  • Cons: Noticeable lag.

Perfect for beginners and professional designers, Artweaver is a must-try if you want a free drawing app. 

Artweaver has notable brush features such as realistic brushes, circular brushes, etc. The realistic brush feature brings life to your artwork! Most of its features are comparable to Adobe Photoshop.

The canvases are highly customizable so that you can satisfy your clients with a desirable size. It also helps with creating a specifically sized art piece.

The best thing about Artweaver:

You can work with a group of artists on the same design for high productivity and a lot of exposure. 

The extensive help file lets you learn every app feature, making it highly beginner-friendly. 

Unfortunately, Artweaver only works on Windows, so Android, iOS, and Mac users can’t use this software.

Why You Should Consider: Artists looking for advanced features for realistic illustrations on Windows should consider Artweaver.

Visit Artweaver Website here!

10. Paint.NET

Best image editing app for Windows.

  • Key Features: Compatible with Windows, Supports PNG, JPEG, GIF, PDN, and BMP files, Plug-In Integration.
  • Price: Free or $7 for Trialware License
  • Rating: 4.1/5
  • Pros: Image quality remains the same, with high-level retouch features.
  • Cons: Limited brush features.

Looking for the best free drawing app for basic image editing with powerful tools? Try Paint.NET for free!

The image editing tools of Paint.NET, such as multi-layer editing, skin retouching, etc., make it a great app for professional-level editing. The best thing about Paint.NET is that the image doesn’t lose quality, no matter how much you edit it through the app.

Paint.NET is compatible with Windows and supports different file formats for image saving. 

You can add various plug-ins to the app to compensate for missing features. These integrated plug-ins run smoothly on Paint.NET.

Why You Should Consider: Paint.NET is perfect for photo retouching and image editing on a basic level. 

Visit Paint.NET Website here!

FAQs

Can I use free drawing apps for professional work?

Yes, many free drawing apps such as Inkscape, Krita, and Fresco have advanced image editing, creation, and design features. These features are comparable with high-end paid apps. 

Are free drawing apps compatible with all devices?

Free drawing apps aren’t compatible with all devices. You have to look into the compatible devices that the app allows. Some devices are compatible with phones, while others are with PCs only. All apps also work on different operating systems.

Do I need a stylus to use a free drawing app?

Using a mouse or laptop screen, you can create digital artwork on free drawing apps without a stylus. However, some features in drawing apps only work with a stylus.

Are free drawing apps safe to download?

Certified free drawing apps are definitely safe to download. While downloading any free drawing app, look for its reviews to ensure authenticity. Never provide any password to an app for safety reasons.

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