Top 10 Best iOS Apps for Designers
The iPhone has established itself as one of the top smartphones for designers thanks to its versatility and mobility. With the right apps, the iPhone can be a powerful design tool that allows designers to unleash their creativity anytime, anywhere.
Whether you’re sketching on the go, accessing specialised tools to support your daily design work, or need a comprehensive app to manage your projects, time and finances, you’ll find a wide range of apps in the App Store that is essential for designers. In addition, we’ve rounded up some of our favourites to help you manage your mental well-being, which can be very important for creatives under pressure.
With the iPhone and the right apps, designers can work seamlessly outside the studio, making the creative process more accessible and less daunting. So if you’re a designer or a creative looking for the perfect tools to unleash your creativity, the App Store has the apps for you.
1 – Procreate
Procreate has long been the most popular art app for iPad users, but its small interface on the iPhone has made it difficult for many creatives to use. However, the latest version of Procreate for iPhone offers a new and more rewarding experience. With a redesigned interface, customised QuickMenu and innovative features, Procreate has officially established itself as one of the best art apps for iPhones.
One of the most exciting new features is QuickShape, which can transform rough doodles into smooth and precise shapes. This tool will undoubtedly become a favourite among users as it can speed up the creative process and ensure that every design is clean and flawless. In addition, the text tools that wowed iPad users a few months ago are now available in the iPhone version of the app.
The new version of Procreate also includes the Liquify, Distort and Warp tools to help artists manipulate their designs and add a unique touch to their artwork. The advanced layer system, one of the app’s most popular features, can now create animated GIFs.
If you’ve been hesitant to try to Procreate on your iPhone because the previous interface needed to be simpler, now is the perfect time to give the app another chance. With the latest version of the app, it’s much easier to access your favourite tools thanks to the redesigned interface and QuickMenu, and the new features add a new level of creativity to your artwork. Procreate has proven that it is a great app for the iPad and an excellent choice for iPhone users who want to take their art to the next level.
2 – Adobe Illustrator Draw
Adobe Illustrator Draw is a powerful app designed for artists and illustrators with all the features designers have come to expect from Adobe. This app is very popular with creatives as it includes all the popular drawing tools and features of Adobe Ideas, making it a versatile tool you can use to create a wide range of designs.
The app has an extensive feature set that will delight illustrators. It allows the creation of layers and flat graphics, as well as drawing with vectors. This feature allows for more precise drawing and designing, which is essential for creating high-quality artwork. In addition, Adobe Illustrator Draw provides access to an extensive library of high-resolution, royalty-free images that you can incorporate into designs and graphics.
Another vital app feature is the ability to sync assets to appear wherever you need them in your workflow. This is especially helpful for creatives who often work on multiple devices and need to access their designs on the go. With Adobe Illustrator Draw, you can start a project on your iPhone and then continue it seamlessly on your iPad or other devices. This makes it an incredibly versatile and practical app for designers and artists.
Overall, Adobe Illustrator Draw is a robust and intuitive app that offers a range of features to help illustrators and designers create stunning artwork. Its compatibility with other Adobe tools makes it the first choice for those who frequently work with Adobe products. The app’s features for drawing with vectors, layering graphics and accessing royalty-free images make it a must-have for creatives who want to take their work to the next level.
3 – Adobe Fresco
Adobe Fresco is a versatile app developed by Adobe Inc. for digital drawing, painting and graphics editing. This app uses vector and raster technology and live brushes that can simulate real-world reactions to pressure, colour change and medium. Initially developed by Adobe for the Apple iPad, you can now use Fresco on the iPhone, Microsoft Surface Pro devices and Creative Cloud Desktop for Windows. Unfortunately, the app is not currently compatible with Android.
There are several plans for Adobe Fresco users. The free version provides access to most of the app’s features, allowing users to take full advantage of the app’s capabilities without having to pay. However, users can upgrade to a premium plan by subscribing to the Adobe Design Mobile Bundle Plan, the Adobe Fresco Single App Plan, the Adobe Photoshop Single App Plan or the Adobe Creative Cloud All Apps Plan. These premium plans offer additional features and tools for users who require advanced functionality.
4 – Canva
The Canva graphic design app on the iPhone is the perfect tool for hobby designers who want to create amazing and unique designs easily and quickly. With a simple and fun interface, you can create stunning graphics from scratch or use the app’s wide range of ready-to-use designs to get started.
This app is particularly popular with Instagrammers who want to create visually stunning Stories. The app offers a variety of templates and designs to help you create captivating stories that stand out from the crowd. In addition, professionals can use Canva to design logos and other branding materials to make their businesses stand out from the crowd.
The best thing about Canva is how easy it is to put text on photos. With just a few taps, you can add text overlays to your images to create stunning invitations, quotes and other graphics that will impress your friends and followers. And when you’re done, you can share your creations directly to Instagram, WhatsApp or email with just a few taps.
Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced designer, Canva is the perfect tool for creating stunning graphics on the go. With its simple interface and wide range of customisable designs and templates, you can create beautiful graphics that will make your social media profiles and marketing materials stand out.
5 – Tayasui Sketches
Tayasui Sketches is a powerful and versatile sketching app designed specifically for mobile devices. It is a comprehensive toolbox for artists that allows users to create stunning sketches, vivid paintings and impressive illustrations on the go. The app has 20 ultra-realistic tools that behave like traditional drawing tools.
One of the standout features of Tayasui Sketches is the ability to sync and back up your drawings to the cloud. This feature ensures you won’t lose any graphics, even if you switch devices or accidentally delete the app. You can also easily import photos into the app to reference or create artwork based on your photos.
Tayasui Sketches also allows you to export your designs as PNG and Adobe Photoshop PSD files. This allows you to quickly transfer your designs to other programmes or platforms for further editing and sharing. The app also supports the pressure pen, enabling you to create even more realistic and natural artwork.
Whether you’re a professional artist or love to draw and paint, Tayasui Sketches is a user-friendly app perfect for creating artwork on the go. With its ultra-realistic tools, cloud backup and easy import/export options, this app have everything you need to create stunning sketches, joyful paintings and illustrations.
6 – Pantone Studio
Pantone Studio is an essential app for designers, artists and anyone who works with colour. Available for iOS, this app allows you to create stunning colour palettes and test them on 3D-rendered materials and designs. With the ability to customise your colour palette or choose from dozens of pre-made palettes, you have the flexibility to create the perfect colour scheme for your project.
The app offers a variety of features to help you design with colours. You can easily extract colours from your favourite images and create a colour palette with up to five colours, each with SRGB, Hex and CMYK values. Pantone Studio also lets you visualise Pantone colours on pliable 3D papers and fabrics to get a better feel for how they will look in real life.
One of the outstanding features of Pantone Studio is the ability to share your colour palettes with your Adobe Creative Cloud account and social networks. This makes it easy to collaborate with colleagues or share your work with clients. The app also allows you to create and save your favourite colour palettes so you can access them later.
Pantone Studio gives you the tools to make the most of colour, whether designing a new brand identity, creating artwork, or decorating your home. So if you’re looking for an app to create beautiful colour palettes, Pantone Studio is worth a look.
7 – Behance
Adobe’s Behance app is a great social network for designers and photographers to share their projects with the world. With a straightforward and easy-to-use interface, you can browse work curated by people daily, follow your favourite designers and explore stunning designs and photo galleries.
The app lets you share your projects to get feedback and connect with other creatives in the industry. You can also watch live streams to learn new techniques and get inspired by other designers. The app allows you to send and receive private messages and job offers, making it an excellent platform for building your professional network.
Whether you’re an aspiring designer, an established creative professional or simply a design enthusiast, Behance is an indispensable tool for discovering new design trends, keeping up with the latest projects and connecting with other designers worldwide. Download the app today and start exploring the world of design.
8 – Sketchbook
Sketchbook® is an exceptional graphic design app for the iPhone that is perfect for unleashing creativity with its wide range of functions. The app is designed to meet the needs of every user, from a quick sketch to a finished piece of art. The highly customisable brushes, clean interface and flexibility, make it one of the best design apps for the iPhone.
Sketchbook offers a complete set of brush types, including pencil markers, airbrushes and many more, which you can customise according to your preferences. The app has a digital version of its physical component, making it more realistic and enjoyable. It is also designed exclusively for sketching and drawing, so you can fully explore your creativity with this app.
With its highly customisable brushes, Sketchbook lets you explore where your innovation takes you. The app also features tutorials and stroke tools, making it user-friendly and practical for all skill levels. In addition, the app has an extensive colour library, making it easy to find the right colour for your artwork.
Overall, Sketchbook is a top-notch graphic design app for the iPhone that caters to everyone, from beginners to professionals. Its versatility, customisability and user-friendly interface make it the perfect app to let your creativity run wild.
9 – Pixelcut
Pixelcut is a versatile graphic design app for the iPhone that offers traditional design tools and a tool for creating AI graphics. The design tools, templates and pre-built elements are similar to those of Canva and Adobe Express, making it an excellent option for essential functions such as creating posters, social media posts and presentations. The tool for creating AI graphics needs improvement but is still very useful. As with other AI generators, you enter a prompt and wait for your artwork to be generated.
Pixelcut’s background removal and magic eraser tools are standout features that worked well in our tests, although they can affect image quality. There is also an animation tool that makes it easy to create moving images and GIFs from your illustrations. In addition, Pixelcut lets you create a website to showcase your work and add it to social media apps as a “link in bio”. While most users find the free version sufficient, the Pro version of Pixelcut unlocks all the templates, cut-outs and other elements to enhance your graphic design experience.
While the interface generally works smoothly, some users have reported problems logging into the app. Nevertheless, Pixelcut is typically stable, making it an easy recommendation.
10 – Assembly
Assembly is a popular graphic design app optimised for mobile devices that offers users a wide range of features and tools for creating stunning designs on the go. The app is perfect for creative professionals and aspiring artists who want to create beautiful and engaging graphics using only their smartphones or tablets.
With Assembly, you can easily choose from predefined dimensions or import an SVG to take complete control of the canvas. Once you have selected a canvas, you can add stickers, shapes and text to the image to create a wide range of design elements. The Styles tab at the bottom gives you great control over the details you have added to the canvas, including the ability to change the opacity via a slider and add strokes or shadows.
One of Assembly’s most important features is its extensive colour selection tools. You can either change the colour of these shadows and strokes via a colour slider or switch to colour swatches where you can select a specific colour from colour groups. With these colour selection tools, you can easily create beautiful, appealing graphics that capture your creativity.
Assembly also has a Gallery tab to view other users’ popular creations. You can like, comment and share the designs. This makes it easy to connect with other graphic designers and get feedback on your work. The app also allows you to see how your work compares to others. This way, you can improve your skills and get inspired for your next project.
With Assembly, you can start with two projects and use a 7-day trial to see if the app is right for you. After that, you’ll need to sign up for a subscription to use the app’s full range of features and tools. Assembly is an excellent choice for a powerful, versatile, user-friendly graphic design app for mobile devices.
Wrapping up the Best iOS Apps for Designers
In summary, with increasingly powerful mobile devices, designers are using iOS apps for designers to inspire and work on the go. The apps listed in this article offer various features and tools that make designing more manageable and accessible, whether sketching, creating colour palettes or generating AI art. Each app has unique features and benefits that make it suitable for designers and artists. With these powerful tools, designers can easily take their creativity to the next level and bring their visions to life.