I am a painter but have also used digital art packages professionally for over 30 years. A lot of people have been going on about i-Pad drawing programs so I thought I’d get the most popular packages and try them out. Below is a list of which ones I thought were worth trying having, the list is sorted by best first. It’s not an in depth review sorry, but hopefully it’ll point you in the right direction.
1 Sketch book Pro, for artists this is a must have. It allows you to use layers, so you can put a reference photo on then draw over it and get rid of the photo later. It has loads of brushes and tools and I wouldn’t be without it. 9/10
2 ArtRage: This has to be a must have as it allows you to build up painterly textures and just for that it gets 8.5/10
3 Art Set – Excellent, real feel, could do with brush size and full colour control otherwise well worth having. Lovely simple interface. 8/10
Similar to, but not quite as good as, Sketch Book Pro, but still worth having as well. 8/10
5 Zen Brush… Very nice, undo is only one step.. for its own sake it’s worth it 7/10
6 ASKetch: Just for drawing really, but makes lovely marks and given it’s so cheap it’s worth having. 7/10
7 Procreate It has a pixel limit which on an ipad 3 gets it a “tut tut!!!”, but if you fancy getting some different yet lovely brushes within a simple interface, this one is worth a look. 6/10
8 OmniSketch: Lots of nice brushes. Kind of good for creating ideas, but not a first choice for drawing though. 6/10
9 Drawing Pad This was more aimed at kids however it did offer a few interesting features such as transfer like stickers, but really most artists would be better off with the other packages… Good if you want to keep your kids / grandkids quiet for a while though. 6/10
Details correct as of 24 May 2012
4 thoughts on “Best iPad Drawing And Painting Programs Round Up”
Thanks for the trouble of writing this. One of the better reviews. I have a similar background. Looking at the galaxy note 10.1 and the ipad 4. trying to figure out the software and system
Thank you Curtis. I was drawing on the Galaxy Note 10 tonight, using Sketchbook Pro. The accuracy of the stylus beats the iPad, but then the Galaxy doesn’t have Art Rage which is a real pity. I often zoom in on the iPad to over come the accuracy issue, but for me it’s worth having the Galaxy as well as the iPad because of this plus I can get the Galaxy to read e-books out loud to me. For me, creating music, emailing and surfing is a league ahead on the iPad… possibly photo editing and drawing are equal on both… As for Art Apps… now I’ve had time to see what I veer towards… Sketchbook Pro and Art Rage are the best, followed by Paper (because of it’s stylistic slickness)… most of the other Apps don’t seem to get used much. Thanks for reading and feeding back.
Thanks for the great review. I’ve been a graphic/interaction designer for over 20 years, and an artist for 25 yrs.
Since witing this Curtis I have found that I’ve ended up using Artrage the most followed by Sketchbook Pro