The 10 Best Tools for Graphic Designers

When we create visual content to communicate and share our message, the craft we create is called Graphic Design. To convey the message correctly graphic designers use techniques like applying visual hierarchy, page layout techniques, typography, pictures among others. Graphic designers especially focus on the logic of displaying elements in interactive designs to optimize user experience by meeting user's specific needs.

According to a 2017 report, there are total of over 260,000 graphic designers. Also, in 2012, the average salary of a Graphic Designer was $44,150. An expert level Freelance Graphic Designer can even charge more than $70 per hour.

To make great graphic designs every graphic designers need some tools which are ideal for their requirements and have all the necessary features. So, if you are a Graphic Designer, this list of Graphic Designing tools may help you to upgrade yourself or if you are an entrepreneur, then this list can help you save a lot on Graphic Designing.

Tool Price
Adobe Photoshop US $20 per month
Adobe Illustrator US $31.49 per month
Adobe InDesign CC US $31.49 per month
Pixlr Free
Autodesk SketchBook Free
PaintShop Pro US $65.70 for full version
Adobe Photoshop Elements US $99.99 for full lincense
Piktochart US $29 per month for PRO $99 for PRO Team
Inkscape Free

Adobe Photoshop

Founded By Adobe
Developed By Thomas and John Knoll
Developed In 1987

Adobe Photoshop Logo
Adobe Photoshop Logo

Adobe Photoshop is one of the most popular tools for graphic designing and is beneficial for all levels of users, beginners, intermediate and advanced. Adobe Photoshop is available for both Windows and Mac. The features including channel mixing, clone stamp tools, basic editing techniques like cropping, straightening, rotating and flipping, with more editing effects like blemish removal, auto-fix, colour correction etc. Photoshop is available at the US $20 per month with 100 GB of cloud storage.

Adobe Illustrator

Founded By Adobe
Developed By John Warnock
Developed In 1987

Adobe Illustrator Logo
Adobe Illustrator Logo

Adobe Illustrator is another software application which is widely used by graphic designers, web designers, visual artists, and professional illustrators across the globe to create high-quality artworks. It is used to create drawings, illustrations, and artwork. Adobe Illustrator is available for Windows and Mac. The features include pixel-perfect design, colour sync, images in brushes, custom designs, smart guides, file packaging etc. Adobe Illustrator has a free trial and comes with three paid plans, Annual plan with a monthly fee of US$20.99/month, Annual prepaid plan at US$239.88/year and monthly plan at US$31.49/month.


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Adobe InDesign CC

Founded By Adobe
Developed By Adobe Systems
Developed In 1999

Adobe InDesign Logo
Adobe InDesign Logo

Adobe InDesign CC is a desktop publishing software application which is used by graphic designers, artists, publishers, and marketing professionals to create flyers, brochures, magazines, newspapers, and books. Graphic designers can share the creatives designed in InDesign in both digital and print formats. Adobe InDesign CC is a part of Creative Cloud as the CC designates the same. InDesign has all the tools that graphic designers need to design pages and create visual layouts. Adobe InDesign has three paid plans, Annual plan with a monthly fee of US$20.99/month, Annual prepaid plan at US$239.88/year and monthly plan at US$31.49/month.

Pixlr

Aquired By 123RF
Developed By Ola Sevandersson
Developed In 2008

Pixlr Logo
Pixlr Logo

Pixlr is a web-based online photo editing tool which also has a mobile app version. There are enough features available in Pixlr to make photo editing easy and fast. Users can create a new image with Pixlr, edit an image or upload images directly for URLs. The editor menu of Pixlr is similar to Photoshop in terms of the layout design and how the various options work. Pixlr is easy to use and you just need a basic understanding of how image editing tools work to use Pixlr. The features of Pixlr include layers, adjustments, filters, magic wands, brushes, erasers, image retouching, photo collage, effects etc. It is also an excellent choice of application for those who do not need mobility without sacrificing the use of a powerful tool. The best thing about Pixlr is that it is free to use.


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Autodesk SketchBook

Founded By Autodesk
Developed By Autodesk Inc.
Developed In 2016
Autodesk Sketchbook Logo
Autodesk Sketchbook Logo

Autodesk SketchBook is a painting and drawing app for creative professionals like architects, designers and concept artists. Autodesk SketchBook is available for both desktop and mobile. Autodesk SketchBook is specially designed for artists and designers and has a wide range of tools which includes drawing and line-work tools, brushes, textures, gradients, and blending modes. The tool is used for raster image editing but it is commonly used for drawing, painting, and rapidly creating artwork. In SketchBook it is easy to group and rearrange various elements on different layers. Additionally, it has many features which include guides and rulers, perspective guides, distort transform, brushes blending, easy gradients. SketchBook also has "Flipbook" which is a separate animation mode. We have good news for you, now Autodesk SketchBook is free for everyone.

PaintShop Pro

Founded By Jasc Software, Inc.
Developed By Corel
Developed In 1990

PaintShop Pro Logo
PaintShop Pro Logo

PaintShop Pro (PSP) is an image editing software where designers can edit both raster and vector graphics. It provides professional tools which allow users to create graphic design, edit photos, improve images and quick fixes among its features. Besides, PaintShop Pro has some advanced features which include layers and masks, Makeover tools, One-click fixes & filters and more. PaintShop Pro has a 30 days free trial and comes with two pricing options, the Full version is available at INR 4,680 and Upgraded version is available at INR 3,690.

Adobe Photoshop Elements

Founded By Adobe
Developed By Adobe Systems
Developed In 2019

Adobe Photoshop Elements Logo
Adobe Photoshop Elements Logo

Adobe Photoshop Elements is a raster graphics editing tool for image editors, beginner photographers and entry-level designers. The tool has been designed to target professional photographers and individuals. Adobe Photoshop Elements also is known for being a good organizer of photographs as it organises the photographs based on the date and also provides a visual view of the photos. There is a disadvantage of using Adobe Photoshop Elements 2018 as it can't be used for print production because it cannot export files in the CMYK colour mode. Photoshop Elements supports a simplified colour management system and it also excludes detailed soft-proofing. Adobe Photoshop Elements has some limited set of Photoshop plugins. Also, it has some features especially for beginners which includes removing the red-eye effect, changing the skin tone in an image and more. Adobe Photoshop Elements has a free trial and comes with two paid plans, Full License at $99.99 and Upgraded License at $79.99.


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Piktochart

Founded By Piktochart
Developed By Goh Ai Ching and Andrea Zaggia
Developed In 2012
Piktochart Logo
Piktochart Logo

Piktochart is a cloud-based application which allows designers and professionals to create infographics easily. Piktochart allows users to insert maps, charts, videos and hyperlinks in infographics. You can create infographics easily as it has many pre-designed templates or themes, you just need to put the information. Piktochart also has a library of icons, images, fonts, and other design tools. You can choose icons and images by subjects which includes education, entertainment, people, and shapes. Piktochart allows you to save created infographics for future use and also export them PNG, JPEG, or PDF format. The upgraded version of Piktochart allows users to create interactive Piktocharts which can be inserted into websites. Piktochart has two pricing plans, PRO plan at USD 29 per month and PRO Team at USD 99 per month. It also has plans for Nonprofit and Education which includes Individual PRO at USD 39.99 and PRO Team at USD 199.95. The PRO Team comes with a 30 days free trial.

Inkscape

Founded By Sodipodi
Developed By Ted Gould, Bryce Harrington, Nathan Hurst, and MenTaLguY
Developed In 2003
Inkscape Logo

Inkscape is a vector graphic software application for professionals. It is used by designers and artists across the globe for creating various types of graphics such as logos, icons, illustrations, diagrams, map and web graphics. Inkscape is a free and open-source software which uses the W3C open standard SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) as its native format. Inkscape has similar drawing tools and capabilities of Adobe Illustrator, CorelDRAW and Xara Xtreme. The features of Inkscape includes a simple interface with multi-lingual support, designers can import and export files in various formats, including SVG, AI, EPS, PDF, EPS and PNG. It is available for Windows, Mac OS and Linux.

Visually

Founded By ScribbleLive
Developed By Adam Breckler, Lee Sherman, Stew Langille, Tal Siach
Developed In 2011
Visually Logo
Visually Logo

Visually is an indirect graphic design tool which is used by many graphic designers. Visually helps graphic designers to store their own infographic/chart work for others to explore. It can also be used as a learning tool because most of the infographics are about graphic design trends. Many graphic designers use Visually for self-promotion and find new work. Visually is a platform where businesses can create content from over 1000 designers, writers, developers, creative directors, and animators. It matches the perfect team according to the business requirements.


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Conclusion

Sometimes graphic designers use multiple graphic design tools to meet the clients' requirements. As per our observation Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign are widely used by most of the graphic designers and professionals. We also recommend Adobe Photoshop if you are just starting your career as a graphic designer. It is one of the best graphic design tools which has all the features you need to create awesome graphics and enhance your images. But we suggest you do your research. You just have to visit the websites and see if the specific tool has all the features you need or not. You can also go to YouTube and see the review videos of each tool to get an idea about each of them.

If you are already using any other tool for graphic designing or if you want to recommend any tool then let us know in the comment below.

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