30 Drawing & Painting Apps for iPad 2022 Free/Paid

30 Drawing and Painting Apps for the iPad 2022 Free/Paid

Amateur and professional iPad artists can find new inspiration drawing without a PC. Here are 30 in-depth app reviews, from beginner-friendly to professional.

 

Outline

How to Choose an App

 

30 iPad individual app reviews

 

How to Choose an App

You can find many free and paid drawing and painting apps on the App Store.

Download different apps, compare them, and try creating to see which app suits you the best!

 

  • Trying out different ones will be the best way to find out what features you need in an application. If you try out a more expensive one with many features, other apps may feel lackluster in comparison.
  • Beginners may feel tempted to start with a free app, but pros will know that with the price tag comes better support and more knowledge available online.
  • If the application offers cloud storage on multiple platforms, you may be able to work between your PC and smartphone.

 

Below, we will outline some features you might want in your application of choice.

 

#1: Best apps for trying something new! Features for each type of creative endeavor

 

The three different creative projects we will talk about here are comics, illustration, and animation. Take advantage of what digital has to offer to up the quality of your work!

 

Apps to help you in your creative activities

 

You want to draw illustrations
If you want to draw fanart from your favorite manga or anime, you probably want an app for illustration.
Some illustration apps have tools that help even beginners create beautiful art, with features from drawing figures to help with anatomy and poses to editable vector lines.

 

Drrawing figures / Vectors

 

You want to draw comics
Use words and pictures to show the world the fun things that happen in your daily life! You’ll find these apps are great for people who want to make and share comics online.
In many comic apps, you will find features like panel frames, speech bubbles, fun effects, and features to help you draw better lines.

 

Speech bubbles and line effects/Stabilization *Necessary if you draw by finger

 

You want to create animations
Animation goes hand-in-hand with comics and illustration, but only a handful of apps can handle animation. Recently more people are making music videos with illustrations and animations. It might be interesting to try doing one on an animation app.

 

 

Some applications will have some restrictions, such as not being able to save using the trial version or having a set number of frames. Therefore, you will want to know what app you want to invest your time and money in before making an animation you can’t even export.

 

 

#2: Design/creative apps packing the power of a PC app

 

You might want 3D features if you want to make game concept and character art. 3D has quickly become indispensable for creating scenery for comics and more. Try using an app that will let you work with the same power as your PC on your iPad.
Being able to work between your PC and tablet will also be important as you won’t need to use the same software. Instead, you can use compatible apps.
Below are applications that let you create with the same functions as a PC.

 

3D features necessary to draw backgrounds
You can keep your creative process moving efficiently if you are able to input 3D objects, use them as a draft layer, and use perspective rulers while on the go.

 

 

Layer amount limitations
Many apps will have an upper limit on the number of layers allowed on high-resolution files for printing. When working between a PC and a tablet, you will want to check how many layers you can create, especially if your art is layer heavy.

 

 

If vector files (SVG) and Photoshop brush files (.abr) are supported
You will want to make sure that your file formats are compatible with Adobe products. Many apps can read PSD files, but not many can read vector SVG or Photoshop brush files. Those are features you’ll want to look out for to work seamlessly.

 

 

Powerful apps for creative design work

 

#3: Apps with various brushes like traditional mediums

 

Many apps can replicate traditional mediums to varying degrees of accuracy with various tool specialties.
Some apps will have oil paint, watercolor, pencil, charcoal, india ink, pen, marker, and more, and some will focus on a certain tool.
Use different brushes that you can get as additional downloadable materials and try them to get the best feel for the program.

 

 

Apps for that hand-drawn feel

 

Individual app reviews

The reviews below will include features of the app, how to get it, for what price, support, and more. If you are a beginner you’ll want an app that has good technical support from the developer. Luckily many paid apps have trial versions where you can try out the app before committing to a purchase. So you’ll want to install as many apps as you can to try them out.

 

  1. Adobe Illustrator: Graphic Art
  2. Adobe Fresco: Draw & Pain‪t
  3. Adobe Photoshop
  4. Clip Studio Paint PRO
  5. Clip Studio Paint EX
  6. Procreate
  7. Ibis Paint X
  8. Inspire Pr‪o
  9. ArtRage
  10. Paintstorm Studio
  11. MediBang Paint
  12. Zen Brush 3
  13. Tayasui Sketches
  14. Concepts
  15. Affinity Designer
  16. Affinity Photo
  17. Infinite Painter
  18. Sketch Club
  19. Vectornator
  20. Artstudio Pr‪o
  21. SketchBook
  22. Pixelmator
  23. Linea Sketch
  24. Colored Pencil
  25. Art Set ‪4
  26. Paper by WeTransfer
  27. Comic Draw
  28. Brushes Redux
  29. Graphic for iPad
  30. Assembly: Graphic Design & Art

 

Top Drawing Apps and Software in 2022 (Free & Paid)

Top Drawing Software and Apps in 2022

 

 

1. Adobe Illustrator: Graphic Art

Released in 2020, this is the iPad version of Adobe Illustrator, the classic software for graphic design, with an all-new workspace designed for the iPad. Unfortunately it has less features than the PC version but there are plans to add them in the future.

 

 

The iPad version of Adobe Illustrator, the standard in vector drawing programs.
There are features only available in the iPad version that take into account finger commands and the Apple Pencil. For example, a quick action command bar that pops up when you select an object and touch shortcuts such as using a long press to change modes.
Right now it is incomparable to the desktop version, but look forward to more features in the future.
You can open your files in other Adobe Creative Cloud apps like Adobe Fresco and edit them in Illustrator through the cloud.

The iPad version of Illustrator is available in English, German, French, and Japanese.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1018784575

 

Developer:
Adobe Inc.
https://www.adobe.com/products/illustrator/ipad.html

 

Support:
A basic guide on how to use the program is available on the site, as well as an FAQ.
https://helpx.adobe.com/illustrator/user-guide.html/illustrator/using/Illustrator-on-ipad.ug.html

 

Price:
You can download it for free but you will need a user account to login and use it.
You will need to pay a monthly fee to use this app.

 

  • Illustrator on iPad: $9.99 USD/month
  • Adobe Design Mobile: $14.99 USD/month
  • Adobe Design Mobile: $149.99 USD/year

If you are on a Creative Cloud plan with Adobe Illustrator included in it, you should be able to use it.

 

Compatibility:
Files made with Adobe Illustrator will be saved in the cloud and can be edited on Windows/macOS on the desktop. You can use AI, SVG, PSD, and more formats on the iPad version which can be opened in many other apps.

 

2. Adobe Fresco: Draw & Pain‪t

Adobe Fresco is a painting software released by Adobe in 2019. This app is optimized for using a stylus and fingers. The coloring mixing and blending is a lot like traditional mediums and stands out from other apps.

 

 

Adobe Fresco is designed for use with pen and touch-operated devices. Its main feature is its ability to mimic aspects of traditional painting, such as color mixing and bleeding. It uses live brushes that bleed and mix colors as real art supplies would. Additionally you can adjust the amount of water and how the paint mixes for each brush. Mixing yellow and blue in Fresco makes green, an aspect that is not often reproduced in other digital painting software. You can also use both raster and vector brushes on the same canvas. In this way, Adobe Fresco is similar to Clip Studio Paint in that it combines both the feel of watercolor and oil painting with the benefits of working with vectors.

 

Adobe Fresco is highly recommended for those who already use Adobe products. It specializes in drawing and rounds out Adobe’s other specialized area software (photo processing, design, animation, etc.), resulting in a full, robust digital art workflow. Furthermore, it uses Photoshop brushes as well as Adobe’s cloud service.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1458660369

 

Developer:
Adobe Inc.
https://www.adobe.com/products/fresco.html

 

Support:
https://helpx.adobe.com/support/adobe-fresco.html

 

Price and where to get it: Free
The free version will have some features restricted. You will need an Adobe ID account to login to use it.
You can make an in-app purchase to get the premium features. It is included in the Adobe CC app suite. There is also a yearly subscription for just Fresco.

 

In-App Purchases

  • Fresco + Ps on iPad (1 month): $9.99
  • Adobe Design Mobile Bundle (1 month): $14.99
  • Fresco + Ps on iPad (1 month): $9.99
  • Fresco (1 year): $9.99
  • Fresco + Ps on iPad (1 year): $79.99
  • Adobe Design Mobile Bundle (1 year): $149.99

 

Compatibility:

iPhone and Windows devices both offer most features. You will not be able to use pen pressure sensitivity on the iPhone with the Apple Pencil.
Artwork can be saved to the cloud from the iPad version and then can be worked on from other apps.

 

3. Adobe Photoshop

The iPad version of one of Adobe’s longest selling software for photo editing and retouching. It has less features than the PC version but there are plans to add them in the future.

 

 

On top of this app being compatible with Apple Pencil and touch commands, it also can edit and retouch images like Photoshop for desktop. You can move files between mobile and desktop through the cloud.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app//id1457771281

 

Developer:
Adobe Inc.
https://www.adobe.com/products/sketch.html

 

Support:
A basic guide on how to use the program is available on the site, as well as an FAQ.
https://helpx.adobe.com/mobile-apps/help/sketch-faq.html?set=mobile-apps–fundamentals–adobe-photoshop-sketch

 

Price and where to get it:
You will need an Adobe ID account to use it. There is a 30-day trial available.
It is included in the Adobe CC app suite.

 

In-App Purchases

  • Photoshop on the iPad: Monthly: $9.99
  • Photoshop on the iPad: Yearly: $79.99
  • Adobe Design Mobile: Monthly: $14.99
  • Adobe Design Mobile: Yearly: $149.99

 

Compatibility:
You can send files to the desktop version of Photoshop and Illustrator.

 

4. Clip Studio Paint PRO

The iPad version of the professional PC software for illustration, comics, and animation. This app has powerful features that are on par with the PC version. It’s trusted by major worldwide brands like Wacom and Samsung, so you can count on high quality with reliable support.

 

 

There are no limits to the layers you can create, featuring highly customizable brushes, filters, color correction, and more. Everything you need to create a digital masterpiece is in this program. Recently new features like AI colorization have been added with its regular free program updates.

With professional features like stabilization and 3D models it might seem too advanced a drawing app at first, but there is a wealth of information available online in official tutorials and online user groups. Once you master this program it will become your best friend.

 

If you are interested in features that allow you to make multi-page projects and longer animations, you will want to invest in the EX version introduced below.

It’s a powerful tool for making color illustration, comics, Webtoons, animation, and more.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1262985592

 

Developer:
CELSYS, Inc.
https://www.clipstudio.net/en/

 

Support:
You will find an FAQ on the official site, detailed explanations of the functions, professional creator tutorials, videos, and more. There is also a community help site for your questions called Clip Studio ASK. A lot of tips are also available on social media, posted by users.
https://tips.clip-studio.com/en-us/official

 

The support page has a large FAQ section with multilingual support.
https://support.clip-studio.com/en-us/products/clip-studio-paint

 

Price:
You can download it and use a limited feature version to try it, but you will not be able to save or export files.

Sign up for a monthly plan to get up to 3 months free.
*This is only for the first time you apply for a monthly use plan. You also need to apply via the app.

 

A flexible monthly usage plan for a single preferred device. You need to apply from the app.

  • Clip Studio Paint PRO: $4.49 USD/month $24.99 USD/year

 

There are also other great deals available for multiple devices. For more information, please refer to the official website.

 

Compatibility:
Most features can be used on any of these devices: Windows/macOS/iPad/iPhone/Android.
You can put your artwork on the cloud to work on it over multiple devices.

 

5. Clip Studio Paint EX

More powerful than Clip Studio Paint PRO, this is an iPad version of the PC software for creating professional illustrations, comics, and animations. Especially loved by professional manga and comic artists, this program has all the features of PRO combined with additional canvas settings, multi-page management, batch processing, and everything else you need to make your workflow more efficient.

 

 

It supports 3D import, various rulers including perspective rulers, vector drawing, Photoshop brush file (.abr) compatibility, and has a good reputation for line art and having numerous brushes.

Animation studios also choose this program for its various animation tools such as timelines, palettes, onion skin, and light table features.

 

Not to mention you can also team up with other people to work collaboratively through the cloud on a project.

By connecting through the cloud you don’t have to worry about which device you will use either!

Use this software as a way to open new doors to genres you have never explored.

Preview how your work will look on the smartphone, export portions of your canvas, or stitch multiple pages together to optimize your Webtoon creations.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1262985592

 

Developer:
CELSYS, Inc.
https://www.clipstudio.net/en/

 

Support:
You will find an FAQ on the official site, detailed explanations of the functions, professional creator tutorials, videos, and more. There is also a community help site for your questions called Clip Studio ASK. A lot of tips are also available on social media, posted by users.
https://tips.clip-studio.com/en-us/official

 

The support page has a large FAQ section with multilingual support.
https://support.clip-studio.com/en-us/products/clip-studio-paint

 

Price:
You can download it and use a limited feature version to try it, but you will not be able to save or export files.

Sign up for a monthly plan to get up to 3 months free.
*This is only for the first time you apply for a monthly use plan. You also need to apply via the app.

 

A flexible monthly usage plan for a single preferred device. You need to apply from the app.

  • Clip Studio Paint PRO: $8.99 USD/month $71.99 USD/year

 

There are also other great deals available for multiple devices. For more information, please refer to the official website.

 

Compatibility:
Most every feature can be used on any of these devices: Windows/macOS/iPad/iPhone/Android.

 

The PRO version introduced below is a simpler and cheaper version of EX  (4. Clip Studio Paint PRO)

 

6. Procreate

A classic and well-known iPad paint app that won the Apple Design Award. Its wide canvas with touch operation ensures a comfortable drawing experience. The simple UI makes it easy to find features.

 

 

Procreate has many digital features, such as brush customization, perspective rulers, clipping masks, text tools, and animation. Not only is it rich in features, but it also has a clean interface that’s easy for beginners to understand. When you start the app, it displays an impressive video on how to use it and a high-quality example image file.

There is a Procreate app for the iPhone with fewer features called Procreate Pocket.
Neither application has a trial version available and, therefore, unfortunately, no way to test them out before purchasing.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id425073498

 

Developer:
Savage Interactive Pty Ltd
https://procreate.art/

 

Support:
A basic guide on how to use the program is available on the site, as well as an FAQ. (Available only in English and Simplified Chinese)
If you don’t find what you are looking for in the FAQ you can contact them by support form.
https://procreate.art/support/

 

Price:
$9.99

 

Compatibility:
The file format is .procreate which can be used with the iPhone version, Procreate Pocket.

 

7. ibis Paint X

A fast-growing free app that lets you draw illustrations and manga on your smartphone, tablet or computer.

 

 

ibisPaint is a free illustration and manga drawing app. The UI design is optimized for smartphones and tablets. In addition to more than 2500 textures and screentones, it also has a full range of manga production features such as a frame border function. However, canvas size and dpi are limited. A B5 or A5 canvas cannot have 600 dpi resolution, a requirement for printing black-and-white comics.

 

The free version displays ads and limits the number of brushes. Watching an ad will unlock these functions for a limited amount of time. Purchasing the paid version removes ads and brush restrictions. If you become a premium member of their monthly membership system, you can use the member-only filters as well.

 

You can also record your drawing process as a timelapse video and post it to their official website and Twitter.

 

ibisPaint is compatible with Clip Studio Paint, so you can upload ibisPaint artwork to the Clip Studio cloud, then continue working on the same layers in Clip Studio Paint.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id450722833

 

Developer:
ibis inc.
https://ibispaint.com/

 

Support:
Check the official website for Frequently Asked Questions and tutorials. It has a lot of useful content, perfect for digital art beginners. You can also contact support from the website’s official contact form.

In addition to an Official YouTube channel, other users ’tutorial videos are also available on their official website gallery.
https://ibispaint.com/about.jsp

 

Price and where to get it: Free

It’s basically free to use, but you can remove ads and add features by paying for the following plans.

 

  • Prime Membership: $2.99 USD
  • Remove-Ads Add-on: $8.99 USD
  • Prime Membership (Yearly plan): $27.99 USD

 

Compatibility:
iPhone and Windows versions both offer most features. You will not be able to use pen pressure sensitivity on the iPhone with the Apple Pencil.

 

8. Inspire Pro

A painting app that shines with the help of the 2nd generation Apple Pencil, and is especially good at reproducing oil paint strokes. Intuitive operation is its selling point, as there is no manual.

 

 

This is a painting app that specializes in mimicking traditional brushstrokes.
It has a simple interface with no layer function.
It is not suitable for creating illustrations that need to be finely adjusted, but it is good for oil painting on one layer.
This app is optimized for the 2nd generation Apple Pencil. You can change tools and open the menu with just two taps of your stylus.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id355460798

 

Developer:
snowCanoe
http://snowcanoe.com/InspirePro/index.html

 

Support:
Check out their latest news through the official Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.
An FAQ is available on their official site. (English only)
https://snowcanoe.com/Contact.php

 

Price:
$9.99

 

Compatibility:
Inspire is also available for the iPhone.

 

9. ArtRage

This is the mobile version of ArtRage for Windows/macOS.

 

 

It specializes in realistic simulations of traditional painting materials. Not only can you use tools like pencils and paintbrushes, but also traditional tools not usually found in digital art programs like paint rollers and palette knives.

Compare it to the desktop version however, and you might discover your favorite brushes or filters are nowhere to be found.
Without PSD file support, print size settings, or the ability to edit with a selection tool you might find that you cannot create as freely on the iPad.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id391432693

 

Developer:
Ambient Design Ltd.
https://www.artrage.com/artrage-ios/

 

Support:
An FAQ is available on their official site. (English only)
https://www.artrage.com/support/

 

Price:
$2.99

 

Compatibility:

There is an iPhone/Android version that has the same features as the iPad version. There is no pen pressure sensitivity for the Apple Pencil.
The file format is .ptg which can be used with the Windows/macOS program, ArtRage 6.

 

10. Paintstorm Studio

Paintstorm Studio offers various textures and brushes for you to enjoy creating illustration.

 

 

Paintstorm Studio is a low cost, advanced painting software available for Windows, macOS, and iPad. It has a wide variety of brushes and many customizable features. If you draw digitally, you should check this software out.

 

It features an interface specialized for drawing with Apple pencil and touch. You can draw while operating the screen with the hot buttons displayed at its bottom.
It also supports PSD format and ABR format, making it compatible with Adobe Photoshop.

 

The iPad version of Paintstorm Studio has almost all of the same functions as the desktop version. However, you cannot share files between devices.

There are many default brush settings, allowing you to draw natural objects and backgrounds using CG-like effects. Many of the default brushes have a traditional feel, suitable for impasto painting. You can also customize brushes to suit detail work and other drawing styles such as manga and anime-style illustrations.

 

Paintstorm Studio also has a Mixer palette that allows you to mix colors. It’s quite a unique drawing tool, and having some previous knowledge of CG will help when working with this app. Paintstorm Studio is available in both English and Japanese.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1077984099

 

Developer:
Sergei Komarov
https://apps.apple.com/us/developer/sergei-komarov/id1060632106

 

Support:
There is an English support page where you can find tutorials.
https://www.paintstormstudio.com/help/

 

Price and where to get it:
US$12.99

 

Compatibility:
The files are compatible between the Windows version, MacOS version, and Linux version. However, you will not be able to share files between devices.

 

11. MediBang Paint

MediBang Paint is free software with many features for drawing manga. If you register as a user and log in, you can unlock more features. It’s a good way to try out many kinds of features for free.

 

 

This app is a free simple drawing tool. Although you cannot customize it as much as paid ones, it has essential functions for drawing manga, such as frame borders and screentones. It’s made by the same company that makes the apps Jump PAINT and MangaName. These are apps for creating comics rather than illustrations.

 

Moreover, it comes with various cloud functions, including access to over 1000 screentones and 20 fonts. You can save your work on the cloud to continue working on it on other devices. To use these functions, you must register as a user and log in. Note that you cannot transfer settings such as those on pens and brushes between different operating systems, such as a computer and an iPad.

 

If you are looking to draw black-and-white comics, MediBang Paint or Clip Studio Paint, the de-facto industry standard, are both good go-to options.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1003588804

 

Developer:
MediBang inc.
https://medibangpaint.com/

 

Support:
There is an official FAQ and customer support in Japanese, English, and Chinese (traditional and simplified).
https://medibangpaint.com/en/

 

Price: Free (In-app purchases available)
It’s basically free to use, but you can remove ads and add features by paying for the following plans.

 

  • Remove-Ads Add-on: $7.99 USD
  • Creative Pack: $7.99 USD
  • Filter Pack: $3.99 USD
  • MediBang Premium: $2.99 USD
  • MediBang Premium100: $4.99 USD
  • MediBang Premium300: $9.99 USD

 

Compatibility:
The Windows/macOS/iPad/iPhone/Android versions offer most features. You will not be able to use pen pressure sensitivity on the iPhone with the Apple Pencil.

 

12. Zen Brush 3

Zen Brush 3 is an app that allows you to draw as if with a Japanese calligraphy brush, doing ink painting, sumi-e paintings, and more. In addition to the basic black ink, the new version supports 30 colors.

 

 

This application really specializes in the experience of writing and drawing with a brush.
The difference from the older Zen Brush 2 is the delicate expression of water and color. You can achieve more of a wash by adding water and blot areas before the ink dries to take away color, and now you have the ability to use up to 30 colors to broaden your expression.

 

Zen Brush 2 is also sold with the newer version, so fans of the earlier product can enjoy painting in a way they are used to.
Available in Japanese, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, English, and Korean.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1531841731

 

Developer:
PSOFT
https://psoftmobile.net/en/

 

Support:
Check the official website for a basic guide.
https://psoftmobile.net/en/zenbrush3.html

 

Price:
$4.99

 

Compatibility:
iOS/iPad/Android/Huawei versions are available and can use most functions. A Windows 10 version is scheduled to be released.

 

13. Tayasui Sketches

Tayasui means “easy and simple” in Japanese. This is something that is extremely apparent in the UI.

 

 

This app features the brushes and palette on the edge, in a very simple design. You can paint with transparent watercolors and bold acrylics on up to 4 layers, making this an app more for casual paintings. You can purchase the Pro version to unlock the layer limit. In the Pro version you can unlock realistic watercolor brushes, rulers, patterns, and more.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id641900855

 

Developer:
Tayasui.com
https://tayasui.com/sketches/

 

Support:
An FAQ and tutorials are available on their official site in English.
Basic tutorials are also available in French and Chinese (Traditional and Simplified).
https://tayasui.com/sketches/help/index.html

 

Price:
It’s basically free to use, but you can remove ads and add features by paying for the following plans.

 

  • Pro Version: $5.99 USD
  • More Tools: $1.99 USD
  • Layers: $1.99 USD
  • Olivia’s Coloring Book: $1.99 USD
  • Carl’s Coloring Book: $1.99 USD
  • Enable Stylus Pressure: $1.99 USD

 

Compatibility:
There are iPhone/Android/macOS/iPad versions where you can basically use the same functions. There is no pen pressure sensitivity for the Apple Pencil.

 

14. Concepts

Concepts is an application that allows you to make notes and sketches on graph paper. As you continue to draw, the canvas will expand to give you more room. This feature comes in handy when you are sketching out storyboards or doing product design.

 

 

This app is great for when you want to jot down ideas or make mind maps. You can use the grid paper or grids to make design sketches as well.
Concepts will save your files as vector data to make it easier to enlarge, shrink, and edit.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id560586497

 

Developer:
TopHatch, Inc.
https://apps.apple.com/us/developer/tophatch-inc/id560586500

 

Support:
Check out their latest news through the official Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.
An FAQ is available on their official site. (English only)
https://snowcanoe.com/Contact.php

 

Price:
It’s basically free to use, but you can get features by paying for the following plans.

 

  • Essentials: $14.99 USD
  • Everything Monthly + Trial: $4.99 USD
  • Everything Monthly: $4.99 USD
  • Everything Yearly + Trial: $29.99 USD
  • PDF Essentials: $4.99 USD
  • Essentials (iPhone Only): $4.99 USD
  • Everything Yearly: $29.99 USD
  • DIY Stickers: $3.99 USD
  • Pro Pack (Legacy): $7.99 USD
  • 10 Object Packs: $14.99 USD

 

Compatibility:
There are iPhone and Android versions that have the same features as the iPad version. There is no pen pressure sensitivity for the Apple Pencil.

 

15. Affinity Designer

Affinity Designer is a vector drawing app that can be used for graphic design such as illustrations and icons. The mobile app has less features than the desktop application by the same name.

 

 

It comes equipped with all the basic features you would expect from a vector drawing app.
You can export PDF, EPS, SVG, and PSD files. Beware that AI files are not supported.
Something that sets it apart from other apps is how you can not only edit vector paths but you can paint over a vector base with a raster brush to add texture.

 

Be aware that you will not be able to get the same raster brush drawing experience as the desktop version. Additionally you will also not get the same typography editing nor will not be able to input links to resources in the file. If you want the full design tool experience you might just want to get the desktop version.

Japanese, Italian, Spanish, German, French, Portuguese, Russian, Simplified Chinese, and English are supported.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1274090551

 

Developer:
Serif Labs
http://affinity.serif.com/designer/ipad

 

Support:
A basic guide on how to use the program is available on the site, as well as an FAQ. (Only in English)
https://forum.affinity.serif.com/

 

Price:
$21.99

 

Compatibility:
Data is compatible between the desktop and iPad version.

 

16. Affinity Photo

Affinity Photo for iPad is a full-fledged photo editing app with the same functions as the desktop version.

 

 

There are no limits to layers and you can use multiple color modes like RGB, CMYK, and grayscale. Not only does it have the same features as the desktop version but it also is optimized for the Apple pencil. You can also edit and save PSD files.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1117941080

 

Developer:
Serif Labs
http://affinity.serif.com/designer/ipad

 

Support:
A basic guide on how to use the program is available on the site, as well as an FAQ. (Only in English)
https://forum.affinity.serif.com/

 

Price:
$21.99

 

Compatibility:
Data is compatible between the desktop and iPad version.

 

17. Infinite Painter

Use pencils, pens, watercolors and more in this app with an intuitive interface. You can’t make many layers, so you might want to use this for doodling and sketching more than trying to do a complete illustration.

 

 

There are many tools available for your use like pencils, pens, watercolors, flash effects, tones, and some interesting effect brushes. Register your favorite brushes to customize your experience.

The texture of the paper will allow you to have a more traditional drawing look.
The trial version will only allow you to create up to three layers. Upgrade to the Pro version to make up to 72 layers.
Check the in-app help to find out how to use the touch gestures which are a bit complicated.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1146543227

 

Developer:
Sean Brakefield
https://www.infinitestudio.art/discover.php

 

Support:
The usage manual is published in the link below and is only available in English.
https://www.infinitestudio.art/community.php

 

Price:
Free (in-app purchases available)
For $9.99, you can access the Pro version which will unlock all functions such as the symmetry function (symmetrical drawing) and perspective function.

 

Compatibility:
The iPhone/Android versions offer most features. You will not be able to use pen pressure sensitivity on the iPhone with the Apple Pencil.

 

18. Sketch Club

It is an app for sketching with simple commands that has an abundance of unique brushes. This is a good app for drawing and illustration. What’s more, you can post your artwork on their official community and interact with other users.

 

 

What makes this app good is how easy it is to figure out to make a color illustration.
It features a wide variety of brushes and has a Procedural tool, which allows you to draw decorative strokes. This opens up possibilities to create unique geometric patterns.

When switching tools you have to reselect the icon each time, this is a bit awkward if you like switching between the brush and eraser.
There are layers but no clipping or layer masks to do detailed edits to the illustration.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id404414176

 

Developer:
blackpawn.com
https://app.sketchclub.com/

 

Support:
A basic guide on how to use the program is available on the site, as well as an FAQ. (Only in English)
If you don’t find what you are looking for in the FAQ you can contact them by support form.
https://sketchclub.com/help/

 

Price:
$3.99

 

Compatibility:
There is an iPhone version that has the same features as the iPad version. There is no pen pressure sensitivity for the Apple Pencil.

 

19. Vectornator

Vectornator is the most popular vector drawing app for the iPad and is free to use. It has basic functions such as path editing, style application, and text outline, and files can be exported in AI or SVG file formats.

 

 

You’ll find that you have all the tools necessary to do vector drawings for design work.
Features also include object alignment, path merging, typography editing, and more features to do fine adjustments.

The simple interface is well-suited to touch gestures making it so that you can design with more ease.
Official tutorials are available, but only in English.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1219074514

 

Developer:
Linearity GmbH
https://www.vectornator.io/

 

Support:
A basic guide on how to use the program is available on the site, as well as an FAQ. (Only in English)
https://www.vectornator.io/faq

 

Price:
Free

 

Compatibility:
There are macOS and iPhone versions that have the same features as the iPad version. There is no pen pressure sensitivity for the Apple Pencil on the iPhone version.

In addition to general-purpose image formats such as PNG, you can also export to SVG, AI, and PDF file formats.
You can send Vectornator files directly to Illustrator, but you will need an Adobe ID to use this function.

 

20. Artstudio Pro

This app comes with all the features you will need for digital drawing with image editing, oil painting, and more.

 

 

It comes equipped with all the basic functions you need like layers, blurring, color adjustment, filters, etc. You can also import Adobe Photoshop brushes to use them in this program. It also works well if you are just trying to retouch a picture.

 

Russian, Simplified Chinese, and English are supported.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1244142051

 

Developer:
Lucky Clan
http://www.luckyclan.com/

 

Support:
You can ask questions in English on the official forum.
http://www.luckyclan.com/

 

Price:
$14.99

 

Compatibility:
There is an iPhone version that has the same features as the iPad version. There is no pen pressure sensitivity for the Apple Pencil but there is also a macOS version.

21. Sketchbook

SketchBook is a sketchbook app, great for sketching simple ideas of concepts.

 

 

Bring life to your concept and architectural sketches with various tools like fountain pens and color markers. There are functions great for product design such as a perspective guides, curve rulers, and a ruler for drawing symmetric designs. The iPad version has some functions that are not available that are in its desktop counterpart.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/sketchbook/id883738213

 

Developer:
Sketchbook, Inc.
https://www.sketchbook.com/about

 

Official site:
https://www.sketchbook.com/

 

Support:
Guides on how to use the program are not available in other languages but there are many visual guides.
https://www.sketchbook.com/blog

 

Price:
Free

 

Compatibility:
There is an iPhone version that has the same features as the iPad version. There is no pen pressure sensitivity for the Apple Pencil.
There is also a desktop version for Windows/macOS.

Get the Android version from the link below:
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.adsk.sketchbook

 

22. Pixelmator

Pixelmator is a photo editing app made for iPad and iOS. Its main uses are color adjustment and image fixes, but it also offers different brushes for painting and drawing.

 

 

Pixelmator was made with iPad and iOS in mind. Use it to retouch your images on the go or when you feel like popping out a drawing or painting.
You can import and export PSD, JPEG, PNG, and PDF files. Furthermore, it keeps PSD file layer structure intact.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id924695435

 

Developer:
Pixelmator Team
https://www.pixelmator.com/ios/

 

Support:
A basic guide on how to use the program is available on the site, as well as an FAQ. (Only in English)
https://www.pixelmator.com/support/

 

Price:
$4.99

 

Compatibility:
There is an iPhone version that has the same features as the iPad version. There is no pen pressure sensitivity for the Apple Pencil.
The macOS version of Pixelmator Pro’s PXD file is not compatible with the mobile version.

 

23. Linea Sketch

A drawing app that lets you both sketch and take notes with ease.

 

 

Construct memos with graphs and diagrams with the ZipShapes function to draw circles and curves without a ruler. You might not be able to make fine adjustments, but there is a simple layer function that allows you to use up to five layers.

Only available in English.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1094770251

 

Developer:
The Iconfactory
https://linea-app.com/sketch

 

Support:
There is an official database of FAQ available in English.
https://support.iconfactory.com/kb/linea

 

Price:

Free (In-App Purchases)

  • Linea Monthly Subscription: $0.99 USD
  • Linea Yearly Subscription: $9.99 USD
  • Linea Full Purchase: $29.99 USD

 

Compatibility:
There is an iPhone version that has the same features as the iPad version. There is no pen pressure sensitivity for the Apple Pencil.

 

24. Colored Pencil

Colored Pencil is an iOS app that lets you draw with digital colored pencils. The interface is straightforward, so it’s easy to pick up and draw as long as you aren’t drawing anything too complex.

 

 

Doodle with Colored Pencil on the iPad to enjoy sketching with digital colored pencils. You can also input images to make lineart so you can enjoy coloring it in-app.
The brushes are made to imitate color pencils, so it isn’t easy to color in large swatches. And finally, you can use up to 16 layers.
Only available in English and Japanese.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id377598773

 

Developer:
KengoLab
https://kengolab.net/app/colored-pencil/en/

 

Support:
A basic guide on how to use the program is available on the site. Available in English and Japanese.
https://kengolab.net/app/colored-pencil/en/

 

Price:
$1.99

 

Compatibility:
There is an iPhone version that has the same features as the iPad version. There is no pen pressure sensitivity for the Apple Pencil.

 

25. Art Set 4

This app allows you to use oil paint, light watercolors, oil pastels, and more on the side of the canvas. This app imitates the joy of painting traditionally.

 

 

This is an app for sketching while trying out various mediums. The layout of the UI is very straightforward, with the tools right there on the side of the canvas so that you can go between tools with ease as you sketch.
There are not many features for fingers or the Apple Pencil. Therefore, using your finger will result in the same brushstroke as your stylus.

You will need to pay to unlock features such as layers, the eyedropper, filters, and layer masks. You can do rudimentary sketching with the free version, but you will probably want to pay to make a full illustration.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1418530800

 

Developer:
LOFOPI
http://lofopi.com/

 

Support:
There are no official how-tos or tutorials available.
You can contact the developer from the official page.
http://lofopi.com/

 

Price:
Free
Make in-app purchases to use all features.

  • Unlock All: $9.99 USD

 

Compatibility:
N/A

 

26. Paper by WeTransfer

Enjoy scribbling in this memo app that mimics a journal. You can draw in the app, but you’ll have a bit of a struggle doing it in the trial version as you cannot change brush size.

 

 

Draw in pencil, do a watercolor wash, and make a collage in this digital sketchbook!
There are no layers, but you can select parts of your drawing, move them around, and copy-paste, all on one drawing base. If you want to make precise selections as you draw, this may not be the app for you.

 

You can display templates such as notebook ruled lines, graph paper, and to-do lists and use them for various purposes.
It’s possible to scribble to your heart’s content with the trial version, but you will want to unlock the full version to take advantage of brush sizes, fill tools, and limitless color swatches.

 

The diagram tools that allow you to create shapes are also limited to Paper Pro.
If you are looking to create your next piece of work in this program, you will want to upgrade to Paper Pro.
The trial and tutorials are available in English.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id506003812

 

Developer:
WeTransfer BV
https://paper.bywetransfer.com/

 

Support:
There is an English support page where you can find tutorials. Articles in French, Spanish, and Italian are in the process of being added to the site.
https://wetransfer.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/sections/360000240986-Paper

 

Price:
Free
Make in-app purchases to use all features.

  • Paper Pro: $11.99 USD
  • Paper Pro: $7.99 USD
  • Paper Credit: $1.99 USD
  • Paper Credit Bundle: $7.99 USD
  • Paper Credit Bundle: $12.99 USD

 

Compatibility:
There is an iPhone version that has the same features as the iPad version. There is no pen pressure sensitivity for the Apple Pencil.

 

27. Comic Draw

Use this app to make your next digital comic, from creation to sharing online.

 

 

You can draw, color, letter, and make panels in the app. There are also English fonts available to letter your comic.
Only available in English.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id947061777

 

Developer:
plasq LLC
http://plasq.com/apps/comicdraw/ios/

 

Support:
You can ask questions in English on the official site.
https://plasq.force.com/support/s/

 

Price:
You will need to make an in-app purchase after you download the app. There is a 14-day trial period.
$9.99 USD (in-app purchases)

 

Compatibility:
N/A

 

28. Brushes Redux

Brushes Redux is a painting app made for iOS. Enjoy different brushes with a simple interface.

 

 

It is a free app with a simple UI with the added benefit of no ads where you can make a canvas up to 4096 x 4096 px.
Customize brushes or make your own. However, be aware that there may not be that noticeable a difference in the stroke even with pen pressure.
Only available in English.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id932089074

 

Developer:
Christoffer Hoel
https://apps.apple.com/us/developer/christoffer-hoel/id905811020

 

Support:
There is no official support page, but you can ask questions on the GitHub link below.
https://github.com/tougher/Brushes/issues

 

Price: Free

 

Compatibility:
There is an iPhone version that has the same features as the iPad version. There is no pen pressure sensitivity for the Apple Pencil.

 

29. Graphic for iPad

Graphic is here for you if you are looking for a vector illustration app for iPad to help with your graphic design.

 

 

You can do pro-level vector editing and use the cloud to transfer your files from the iPhone version to the iPad version.
You can also import and export PSD, PDF, and SVG file formats and export your vector drawings to PDF and SVG file formats.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id363317633

 

Developer:
Picta, Inc
https://apps.apple.com/us/developer/picta-inc/id343770358

 

Support:
There is an English support page where you can find tutorials.
http://www.graphic.com/tutorials/

 

Price:
$8.99

 

Compatibility:
The files are compatible between the iPhone version and the macOS version.

 

30. Assembly: Graphic Design & Art

Create simple logos, icons, and illustrations in this simple graphic design app.

 

 

Create vector illustrations with its intuitive interface. You can export your files in PDF and SVG file formats.

 

Download:
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1024210402

 

Developer:
Pixite Inc.
https://apps.apple.com/jp/developer/pixite-inc/id285719021

 

Support:
There is an English support page where you can find tutorials.
https://www.pixiteapps.com/pixite-apps-faqs/assembly/

 

Price:

In-App Purchases

  • Assembly Pro: $2.99 USD/week
  • Assembly Pro: $3.99 USD/week
  • Assembly Pro: $1.99 USD/month
  • Assembly Pro: $5.99 USD/month
  • Assembly Pro: $4.99 USD/month
  • Forever Unlock (Discontinued): $9.99 USD
  • Assembly Pro: $1.99 USD/month
  • Assembly Pro: $29.99 USD/year
  • Assembly Pro: $29.99 USD/year
  • Assembly Pro: $14.99 USD (botanical)

 

Compatibility:
There is an iPhone version that has the same features as the iPad version. There is no pen pressure sensitivity for the Apple Pencil.

 


 

Interested in concept art or what it takes to become a concept artist?
Check out the link below!

Ultimate Beginner's guide to Concept Art