Digital art has aroused the curiosity of creators around the world, who are all trying to improve their art with the help of constantly evolving technology. The drawings are proof of the application. The technology market is flooded with applications that enable artists to become enthusiastic about the possibilities and functions available to them.

It is both crucial and practical that you choose a drawing application that meets the following criteria:

  • Adapted to the needs of your profession/hobby
  • Suitable for the art world you are in – beginner or professional
  • Let’s push your artistic talents to the limit.
  • Compatibility with your device and its operating system
  • Offers you plenty of opportunities to draw effectively and efficiently
  • He won’t burn a hole in your pocket.

To speed up this process, we have compiled a list of the top 10 drawing and colour applications for different operating systems – Android, iOS and Windows. For each application useful links have been added to see them in action with tutorials and online courses. Let’s definitely find out which are the best drawing applications.

Make anything you want, simple or detailed, it doesn’t matter!

If you are already an Adobe user, Photoshop Sketch enables a smooth and uninterrupted drawing process by synchronizing all your photo/ drawing devices.  It gives you the best parts of Photoshop for drawing, sketching and painting. It is suitable for traditional painting and allows you to express yourself using natural tools such as pencils, pens, markers and watercolour brushes to create textures and effects similar to paper.

Costs – Free with purchase in the application

Compatibility of the control system

Android 5.0 and above; iOS 11.0 and above.


  • A customizable toolbar allows you to select and remove the colors and tools you use most often
  • Access Creative Cloud libraries to import templates, photos and resources created on multiple devices.
  • Built-in graphic grids and perspectives make it possible to easily draw the world in 3D in 2D drawings.
  • The application is connected to Behance, a social network for art and design that allows you to view and share the artworks of the world in real time.


  • Not as holistic as his photomontage twins.
  • Capturing and creating brushes using the Adobe Store interface is not very intuitive.
  • By using stock images, Adobe would be able to more proactively decide which materials require an additional license to use the media.

Drawings of Adobe Illustrator

If you make vector drawings, brochures, graphics and logos, you should do so.

It is on the list because – again, the free application, Illustrator Draw comes with full layer support, just like its desktop counterpart. You can export the application’s coverage to other devices via CreativeSync for editing in the desktop version of Illustrator or Photoshop. It is better suited for complex vector graphics than the traditional freehand drawing supported by Photoshop. Illustrator Draw provides access to Creative Cloud Libraries.

Cost – Free with application purchase; up to $53.99 per month for a Creative Cloud subscription.

Compatibility of the control system

Android 5.0 and above; iOS 11.0 and above.


  • Five different gripping points with numerous adjustment options
  • Supports scaling up to x64 so you can see the details clearly
  • With the capture function you can create your own templates, shapes and vectors.
  • The brush functions can be adjusted according to style, opacity, size, softness or pressure sensitivity.
  • Makes it possible to draw on photos


  • Limited brush options and possibilities compared to other applications such as Procreate.
  • It takes some getting used to if you’ve never used Adobe products before.
  • You must be a member of the Creative Cloud (free or paid) to log in.

Come back here.

For iPad users, it doesn’t get any better than that.

It’s on the list because – Procreate is one of the best drawing and illustration applications for mobile users, of course designed for iPad users. It comes with many tools and every year there is a new version available with many features and updates. It has no delay, ensures a smooth workflow and is convenient enough to bring your digital parts to life.

The cost is $9.99. (one-time fee for a lifetime subscription)

Compatibility of the control system

iOS 11.1 or later and iPadOS


  • Excellent iPad brand features and usage specifications
  • More than 130 brushes to easily create artistic effects. You can also use the brush machine to make your own brushes or to download other people’s brush versions (like in Photoshop).
  • Supports various file formats (PSD, TIFF, PNG, PDG, JPEG) and enables transparent export and printing.


  • It’s just the iPad. Android users cannot use this beautiful drawing application.
  • The large number of tools can be a bit overwhelming for beginners.
  • Two different applications for the iPhone and iPad
  • No text tools, vectors or shapes.

Here you will find a fully searchable online tutorial that explains Procreate’s different features, where to find them and how to use them.

self-descriptor - drawing program

A rich, free and popular opportunity for artists

It’s on the list because – Autodesk’s Sketchbook has been around for a long time and has gained credibility in the artist community. It is powerful, intuitive and provides a distraction-free drawing surface with a clean user interface. PSD layers can be easily imported and exported, including layer names, group names, and blend modes. It is an excellent choice for product designers, architects, automotive/industrial designers who can put their ideas in ink when inspiration strikes.

Costs – Free for individual users

Compatibility of the control system

iOS, Windows, Android and macOS.


  • You can add an unlimited number of layers using the layer mixing and grouping mode.
  • Precision instruments such as rulers, curve guides, mirrors and radial symmetry help to achieve accurate graphics.
  • Supports various file formats (PSD, TIFF, PNG, PDG, JPEG).
  • The software allows the cameras in the devices to act as scanners, allowing users to capture ideas as they see them in real time.
  • More than 190 adjustable brushes, pens, inks, markers and ellipse guides


  • Demanding and advanced users may find some limitations in the capabilities of the program.
  • High-resolution images may have a problem with loading and scaling with some delay. It is more suitable for use on a desktop computer than on a mobile phone.
  • Logging into the account is a bit annoying every time.

In this video tutorial, you will learn how to use the basic features of Autodesk SketchBook.

An excerpt from Studio Paint

The perfect choice for comics and manga

It’s on the list because – a kind of cross between Photoshop and Sai, Clip Studio Paint (CSP) does a decent job of creating quality animations. There are various drawing and painting tools to give your comics a professional touch. Its vectors and templates make it an ideal choice for illustrators, creative studios and artists working on manga figures and animation.

Pro Version – Suitable for character art, conceptual art and illustration.

EX version – Suitable for manga, comics and animations.

The cost is $49.99. (per) and $219. (EX) – One-time purchase

Compatibility of the control system

Windows and MacOS


  • Cross-platform application and free trial
  • Wide range of options and color gradients.
  • Recurring tasks are displayed and synchronized between the application version and the desktop version.
  • The mixing and colouring brushes are smooth and give an excellent result almost immediately.


  • The user interface should be designed slightly differently to make it more finger friendly and less confusing for beginners.
  • Updates/advertisements on the home screen make it cumbersome
  • The PSC support site and forum are weak and outdated; more in Japanese than in English.
  • Does not support the Android platform.

Discover this successful course The Colouring Pro’s Guide to Colouring with Clip Studio Paint.

Copper spray

A small application for both – individual creations and joint art projects; especially on smartphones.

It’s on the list because – MediBang Paint is a lightweight digital drawing and comic strip application that’s perfect for comic strip artists. This is exactly what beginners need if they want to get into the creative field without worrying about subscriptions. The application also features a dynamic community of artists, resources and tutorials to inspire you and improve your art.

Costs – Free with purchase in the application

Compatibility of the control system

Windows, Android and MacOS


  • It is a cross-platform application that allows the artist to easily collaborate on a project and share his or her progress.
  • Access to cloud storage for efficient data backup and sharing.
  • With over 100 free brushes, shades, textures, backgrounds and color palettes, it’s the perfect tool for making comic books.
  • Large collection of predefined fonts
  • Intuitive and clear user interface


  • Internal advertising makes the use of this platform boring, because it slows down the workflow.
  • You need a MediBang account to be able to use all functions.

Here you will find a special channel with tutorial videos on how to use the functions and tools of MediBang Paint.

Affinity Designer

Superb Pocket Vector Design App for iPad

He is on the list because – an old competitor of Adobe Illustrator, a one-time purchase of Affinity Designer is cheaper than a three-month Creative Cloud subscription. This makes this application affordable compared to other expensive counterparts and distinguishes itself by its clean and easily adaptable vector design. This application is perfect for professionals who are passionate about marketing materials, websites, icons, conceptual art and UI/UX design.

The cost is $19.99. Price: $49.99 for the iPad version, $49.99 for the iPad version, $49.99 for the iPad version. US for Windows and Mac – one-time purchase.

Compatibility of the control system

MacOS, iPadOS and Windows


  • Excellent value for money – the price is super attractive
  • Lightning fast operation with a wide range of functions
  • Professional treatment of painting and painting tools
  • Works seamlessly with Apple Pencil and is compatible with Illustrator.


  • No animation is a small sensitive point.
  • No plugins or scripts
  • No deformation of objects, extrusions or mesh fill gradients.
  • There is no affinity function for photos in the Magic Wand in Affinity Designer.

Discover the top ten Affinity Designer features on your iPad

ArtRage 6

A realistic painting program that produces amazing natural art.

It is on the list because – ArtRage is a drawing program for mobile and desktop computers. It mainly serves the MacOS and Windows market, but also has applications for Android and iOS. It contains interesting features such as brushes for oil paintings, custom brushes, pens and pencils. With ArtRage you can create as many layers as you want and have access to a wide range of possibilities to stack multiple layers on top of each other.

The cost is $79. United States – One-time purchase

(Other options : ArtRage Lite for beginners – $29; ArtRage for Android – $4.99 and ArtRage for iOS – $4.99)

Compatibility of the control system

Windows Vista or later; MacOS 10.9 or later; iOS 10 or later; Android 4.0 or later.


  • User-friendly interface with powerful digital tools and forward-looking layout
  • Good on-site and online support with tools, tutorials and guides. There is also an online community that offers tips, tricks and tricks.
  • Recorded actions, multi-platform accessibility and realistic tools
  • Realistic colours and settings make the site idyllic for digital artists


  • The full desktop version is a bit expensive. However, the lighter version of the desktop is affordable and costs half as much as the full version.
  • A little slow for the big screens

Ibis color X.

A versatile social drawing application with many artistic features

Ibis Paint X has compressed many features of traditional drawing applications into a mobile version of the application. It offers a lot of space for manga drawings and illustrations. This robust application has been downloaded more than 80 million times and competes with desktop drawing software. Allows you to draw, paint and design in the comfort of your smartphone or tablet.

Cost – Free version with ads and limited features; $8.99 – Paid version with ads as purchases in the application.

Compatibility of the control system

iOS 11.0 or later; compatible with iPhone and iPad; Android 4.1 or later


  • Ability to save the screen while drawing and publishing the drawing process
  • Fine functions such as line stabilization, radial rulers, symmetry rulers, frame separator tool, text tool and cutting mask functions.
  • More than 1000 fonts and more than 380 brushes such as diplocs, felt-tip pens, digital pens and airbrushes.
  • Actual functions for layers, area selection and merge mode
  • More than 2500 free materials, 70 high quality filters,
  • An active community site that brings art lovers together for inspiration and collaboration.


  • The application cannot open and support PSD files.
  • No level folder and no BOM level support
  • Different functions slow down or jam the application.

Discover the popular high-end artworks created with Ibis Paint X on the community page.


Epilog Digital Album – Easy for the beginner, fun for the pro.

ArtFlow includes a GPU-accelerated paint engine that makes your creations as fast as they are painted. The application makes it possible to create canvases with 16 layers and supports advanced controls such as blurring and brush movement. The holo-inspired liquid interface is not intimidating and has a simple and easy operation. Don’t forget the more than 80 brushes to choose from!

Cost – $4.99 for the Pro license; the Basic version is free.

Compatibility of the control system

Android 4.4 and higher


  • Supports canvas rotation, choice mask (such as lasso and magic wand).
  • Support for camera orientation (landscape / portrait)
  • Brush guide and new brush motor with universal brush holder
  • Integrates with Samsung’s PEN.UP social networking SDK and supports the Samsung pen on Galaxy tablets.


  • The unlicensed version has a limit of only 2 layers, no PSD support and about 10 basic tools. You must purchase the licensed version to use more features.

Watch this article on the PEN.UP community blog that describes the right and left side of the ArtFlow application’s function menu.

What is the best application for free drawing?

Autodesk Sketchbook is the best free drawing application on our list. Sketchbook has long been recognised in the art world as an excellent application. Not only as a free application, but as a general design application that can compete with other paid applications. Many product designers and architects make use of it. You can use it on iOS, Android, Windows and macOS. You can also consult our list above to find other free drawing programs that are right for you.

What are the applications that digital artists use?

Adobe Photoshop is still undefeated. It is the first choice for many reasons, and for many artists it is the first choice. It has been at the forefront of digital art tools for a long, long time. The functions and possibilities are endless. There are no limits to creativity. It’s a great collaboration tool because it’s part of Adobe’s Creative Cloud Suite. You can share your artwork and access all your possessions from any device.


Although digital art cannot be put on the same pedestal as pencil on paper or brush on canvas, we can say with certainty that it is close to reality with these amazing applications of digital painting. Whichever application you choose, it should satisfy your artistic sensitivity and take your creation to the next level thanks to its technical features.

We hope our list of the best drawing programs has helped you choose your favorites from the sea of applications.

Which digital drawing application are you most passionate about?

Let us know in the comment section.

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