How To Mac Reviews

The 8 Best Free Drawing Software for Mac

Written by John

The retina display with vibrant colors on a Mac is the perfect companion for any digital artist. Your appetite for creating beautiful art will be served well by using the best-in-class drawing software on your computer. However, with premium drawing tools like Adobe Illustrator and Corel Painter costing a bit too much for your liking, you might need other equally good options to satisfy the artist in you.

Especially with the release of the macOS Big Sur which features a lot of design changes, as well as allowing customization of the document icons of your apps, your itch to find the best drawing software that doesn’t burn a hole in the pocket must be greater than ever.

We know what it feels like to let out the artist in you without being limited by tools and features. This is exactly why we’ve researched and found the best free drawing software for Mac with features on par with premium software.

The 8 Best Free Drawing Software for Mac

1. Krita

Krita draw app for mac

Pros:

  • Wide range of brushes and tools for drawing.
  • Fully customizable user interface.
  • Easy to use and beginner-friendly
  • Support for plugins
  • Lightweight with low memory and CPU utilization

Cons:

  • The graphical interface is a bit old and needs improvement.
  • Icons of drawing tools are not very descriptive.
  • Needs constant updates.

A free open-source draw app for mac, Krita is made by artists for artists. It is ideal for use for artists of all skill levels. It has all the features and tools needed to create stunning concept art, illustrations, visual effects, and animation. Constantly rated as one of the best free drawing software available for graphic designers and illustrators, Krita offers a customizable interface with many configurable options to help save time in editing.

A repository of brushes for multiple unique functions allows users to choose the best one for their needs. Users are also able to create their own brushes and tag them. From brush engines, styles, and stabilizers to pop-up pallets and an advanced resource manager, Krita has all the professional tools needed at your disposal to create incredible designs.

Visit Krita Site here

2. Pencil2D

Pencil2D free mac drawing app

Pros:

  • Intuitive and easy to use interface.
  • Suitable for beginners.
  • Ability to use layers.

Cons:

  • Limited availability of tools.
  • More import and export options are needed.

Enjoy creating 2D hand-drawn animations on your Mac with Pencil2D. It has a nice and easy-to-use interface with just the right number of tools to create animations. A beginner-friendly tool, Pencil2D allows you to work your way up from designing characters to creating animations at your own pace. The ability to use layers is an added advantage of the tool.

The animation software drawing tool enables seamless switching between different workflows. The keyboard shortcuts make it easier and faster to work with the tool.

Visit Pencil2D Site here.

3. Inkscape

Inkscape on Mac

Pros:

  • Good selection of tools for vector graphics design.
  • Easy to use UI.
  • Support for a wide range of formats.
  • Expandable functionality with extensions.

Cons:

  • Can be intimidating initially with the many features available.
  • Processing can be slow with a few crashes sometimes.

Inkscape is a powerful design tool that is free mac drawing app. With its various features and tools that can meet the needs of illustrators and designers who’re looking to create both simple and complex art, the software stands out among the free drawing software available for Mac. An ideal tool for drawing cartoon vectors, Inkscape gives Adobe Illustrator a run for its money with its many drawing and editing tools.

In addition to being able to seamlessly create the best shape or beautiful color, you can manipulate objects, edit nodes, and perform path operations with the software. As an excellent tool for graphic designers and illustrators, Inkscape has extensive file format support. You can check out the dedicated wiki page created by the software programmers and users to get a lot of information about the drawing tool including video tutorials and solutions to common problems.

Visit Inkscape Site here.

4. Corel Painter 2021 (free trial)

Corel Painter 2021

Pros:

  • Lots of brushes and tools for digital painting.
  • Near replication of painting done by an artist on paper canvas.
  • Stunning brush and pencil strokes.
  • Similar functionality as Adobe Photoshop.

Cons:

  • Can slow down Mac with low memory.
  • Can have a steep learning curve.

As a top-of-the-line digital art software trusted by professionals around the world, Corel Painter has continued the performance improvement of its software throughout the years with a focus on delivering the best user experience for digital artists. While the 2020 version was way better than the previous versions, Corel Painter 2021 has proven to be even better.

For artists who dread wanting to pay the yearly or one-time subscription cost before using the software, there is good news. You can avail of a 15-day free trial of the software to check out the capabilities of it before getting on board to experience its unlimited potential.

As a great software to emulate the natural feel of canvas painting, Corel Painter can give you wonderful results with its ability to let you tweak your brushes to deliver a realistic feeling to your artwork.

Corel Painter 2021 has enhanced thick brushes to take advantage of how thick paint can interact with the existing art. The new AI styles allow you to create stunning paintings from images. Clone tinting feature, enhanced layers, and new touch bar support on Mac enable you to experience the best of the latest version of Corel Painter.

Visit Corel Painter Site here.

5. Sketchbook

SketchBook on macOS Big Sur

Pros:

  • A good alternative to expensive sketch apps.
  • Intuitive UI.
  • Eliminates the need for using paper to sketch ideas.
  • Rich set of tools for sketching.
  • Compatible across Mac and iPad.

Cons:

  • Need an Autodesk account to use the software.
  • Ruler tool can be improved.

One of the most popular drawing software for digital artists and illustrators, Autodesk Sketchbook is an exceptional tool with a gorgeous interface that provides a superior drawing experience. Even before it was free, it was the choice of tool for many professionals and hobbyists. After it has gone free, Sketchbook is one of the best free drawing software you can use to create amazing art.

It supports predictive strokes and guides and has over 140 brushes to choose from according to your drawing needs. A great feature of the software is its beautiful UI that blends into the background giving you a full-screen canvas view when you begin to sketch. Loaded with features and tools, you’ll realize as you begin using Sketchbook why it is the choice of drawing software for many artists.

Visit SketchBook Site Here.

6. Sketchpad

As a free drawing apps for mac online platform from Sketch.io, Sketchpad has a simple interface with the basic set of tools needed to create digital art. Even if you haven’t used the application before, you can quickly get used to it because of its intuitive interface.

You can use the tools available including adjustable pencils, clipart, lines, and text tools to create interesting digital art. While the tool might not be suitable for highly detail-oriented finishes, you will appreciate its use in creating simple artwork online.

Sketchpad can be a good starting app for beginners looking to start drawing without getting overwhelmed by the various tools and features of drawing software.

Pros:

  • A clean and simple web interface.
  • Basic toolset for drawing.
  • Beginner-friendly.

Cons:

  • Not suitable for detailed drawings.

7. SketchUp

SketchUp

Pros:

  • Easy to learn and use compared to other 3D modeling tools.
  • The 3D warehouse has lots of free 3D components to use in your projects.
  • Extremely useful SketchUp tutorials and videos on YouTube.
  • Well suited for quick and easy 3D design tasks.

Cons:

  • Not suitable for creating photorealistic renderings.
  • Difficulty in detailing as project complexity increases.
  • Limited file compatibility.

SketchUp is your solution for 3D architectural and design problems. Being easy to learn for beginners, you can quickly make designs for residential and office buildings to share with clients for feedback and approval. It has an easy-to-use interface that allows you to detail both the interior and exterior of buildings. Your house drawings will be fantastic allowing clients to clearly visualize the structure from real-life angles.

It allows for a smooth transition to and from AutoCAD to give a better 3D visualization of buildings. The 3D Warehouse library has a lot of ready-made 3D models for use in your projects. Render 3D walkthroughs to give your clients the feel of how the structures will look. Loads of training videos are available online to make it easy to learn, practice, and use the tool.

Visit SketchUp Site here.

8. Adobe Photoshop (free trial)

The undisputed leader for anything graphics related, Adobe Photoshop can bring all your ideas to life to magically transform your art. With a wide selection of tools enabling easy masking and unlimited layers, you can turn any photo into a work of art. Choose from thousands of custom brushes available on the software or create your own ones for stunning designs.

There are various tools to allow you to draw and edit designs on the software. As a trusted tool with a consistent track record of delivering on its ability to create amazing artwork, Photoshop stands out as the end-all solution for many digital artists.

With new features being rolled out regularly and a user base that is constantly growing, you can get to experience the best of Photoshop with the latest version of the software. If you want to try out the magic, there is a 7-day free trial option available before you can choose your subscription plan. There are indeed no limits to your imagination with Photoshop as it remains the best graphics software growing with new capabilities each year.

Pros:

  • Ease in the ability to manipulate any image or design.
  • A huge user community for support.
  • Excellent organized user interface.
  • Customizable and user-friendly usage.
  • Different export formats available.

Cons:

  • Has a steep learning curve.
  • Only available in a subscription model.
  • Occupies a lot of disk space.

When it comes to the best free drawing software for Mac, you have so many options available that you can test many and choose the ones that best suit your needs. With constant updates, vibrant communities, and lots of online resources, free drawing software provide a lot of value to digital artists that you may find it unnecessary to even look for premium drawing tools to satisfy your needs.

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