Essential Graphic Design Software for Beginners
A visually appealing site is a dream of both a website owner as well as a user. The real task is of the graphic and web designers to make the dream turn into reality. It is possible with best graphic design software.
Gone are the days when people only indulged in reading content online. Nowadays, more than words, the site should look interesting in the first place. In fact, with eye-catching visuals and gripping content, the user gets convinced to stay on the website and use it, especially in the case of eCommerce sites. That is to say, graphics play a major role in shaping the outlook of your website. Thus, as a graphic designer, this is your territory and you are the king. So, it is your responsibility to bring something interesting for the viewers. However, in order to create a website with such intriguing visuals, you will require graphic design software tools that will help you reinforce images, models, and text that is to be shown on the website. Well, if you’re a newbie in the field of graphic designing, you are at the right place. Since here at TemplateToaster web design software blog, you can check out the list of essential graphic design software for beginners (both paid and free) that will render a professional look to your website graphics.
List of the best Graphic design software (2021)
6. Adobe InDesign
7. Serif Drawplus
8. Xara Xtreme
9. Coral paintshop
10. Coral photoimpact
Graphic design software for graphic designers (Review)
1. Photoshop – graphic design software
The road led to photo editing was never so interesting. The automatic options infuse life into your images. You will able to craft beautiful designs with Photoshop that become ‘the talk of the town’ in minutes. However, with Photoshop graphic design software you can easily combine multiple images to make a beautiful amalgamation. Moreover, it provides you the features to remove unwanted objects from the image. You can use its basic features like perspective correction, channel mixing, and clone stamp tool and have a stunning piece of design in a couple of minutes. Photoshop runs smoothly both on Windows and Mac operating systems. In fact, Photoshop is also considered one of the best graphic design software for beginners as it comes with many simplified options.
- Basic: Cropping, straightening, rotating and flipping.
- Auto-Fix: One touch adjustment.
- Blemish Removal: Ability to remove any spot or dirt from the image.
- Colour: Slide controls to enhance the colors of the image.
- One-Touch filter: 20 eye-catching effects to choose from.
- Image Rendering: Panoramic image option.
- Borders: Add your personal touch.
- RAW photo support: RAW format support.
- Sharing: via sites like Facebook, Revel, Twitter, Tumblr, and more.
Pros of graphic design software
- Video editing is smooth.
- The crop tool is quite effective.
- Performance is highly improved.
- No perpetual license.
- The interface is crushing.
- Some tools lack progress bar visibility.
GIMP or GNU Image Manipulation Program is the perfect alternative to Adobe Photoshop. In fact, the professional graphic design tools make it ideal for not just graphic designers but photographers as well. The photo manipulation feature of this software is highly used to craft crystal-clear graphics. However, once you start using GIMP, it will definitely achieve the pedestal of being your main desktop publishing tool. The GIMP interface is totally customizable. On the other hand, the full-screen mode allows you to view and edit at the same time. However, it does not include all the extensive features. But, there are many notable features that will provide you a great designing experience. GIMP runs on GNU/Linux, OS X, Windows, and other OS. Being a cross-compatible graphic design software program, it has a strong support community. This is, hands down, one of the prime choices when selecting the best graphic design software for beginners. You can check the difference GIMP vs Photoshop
Pros of graphic design tool
- The UI is bright and modern.
- Very easy to use.
- Comes with single windows usage.
- Have a few bugs.
- Struggles with Cintiq tablets in the initial stage.
3. Illustrator – best graphic design software for beginners
If you want to use vector art to create logos, sketches, typography, icons or even complex illustrations for videos or mobile then Illustrator is the tool for you. You can create artwork with seamless alignment by drawing pixel-perfect shapes. With Illustrator designing could never be faster. Illustrator comes with its own plugins that help in making a blank web page into a brilliant looking web page. Some plugins are made for older versions of Ai and have a zest of new features for new versions like Creative Cloud, making it an ideal and best graphic design software. Being part of Creative Cloud, you get to use the app on both your desktop and Mac. You may read Indesign vs Illustrator, Coreldraw vs Illustrator, Illustrator vs Photoshop, Lightroom vs Photoshop , Affinity designer vs Illustrator and Coreldraw vs Photoshop.
Pros of graphic design software
- Touch-type tool is awesome.
- The Free Transform tool is very simple to use.
- Availability for Windows and Mac.
- The price is high.
Inkscape is a professional tool ideal for vector art lovers and graphic designers who use SVG file format. The tool is perfect for Windows, Linux, OS, and Mac as well. It doesn’t matter whether you are a professional or just a person who wants to create vector images for a personal blog. In terms of sketching, coloring or making illustrations Inkscape is very easy to use. With the Ghostscript extension .eps files are easily readable. You can check difference between Inkscape vs Illustrator. Inkscape also comes with awesome features like:
- Ability to directly edit the source code.
- Keys to move screen pixels.
- Edit clones on the canvas.
- Edit gradients.
- Fill paint-bucket with one click.
- Absolutely free.
- Endless Filters.
- New effect tools as a bonus.
- Extremely slow.
Are you an aspiring web designer and looking for a graphics editor that gives you the ability to create infinite designs without any restrictions while honing your skills at the same time? If so, you might want to check out CorelDraw, a vector graphics editor, that is hands down one of the most popular Industry Standard editors presently. CorelDraw has some cool productive functions and such an ease of use that no other vector editor can match up to. However, the tool gives you full control so you can get fast and dynamic results. With CorelDraw version X5 and above, you get an inbuilt organizer (Corel CONNECT) also. With tools like Twirl, Smear, Repel and Attract – vector object editing was never so easy. Likewise, the Alignment guide enables you to position objects as per your requirement. CorelDraw works smoothly with large files in Corel Photo-Paint, making it a must-have in the graphic design software list. In fact, it also supports apps like Barcode wizard, Duplexing wizard, Bitstream Font Navigator, etc. Check out more about CorelDRAW.
- The interface customization is ideal.
- The design is very fresh.
- The training videos are very helpful.
- Choose from perpetual license or subscription.
- The right-click gives awesome vectorization.
- Shaping docker gives maximum usage.
- No Mac version.
- Tools are hard to learn for newbies.
- Navigation is not easy.
- Navigation board is not visible.
- The freehand brush is hard to use.
6. Adobe Indesign – best graphic design software for designers
Backed by the Adobe brand, InDesign is the business leader for creating clean layouts for desktop and mobile devices alike. Adobe InDesign is ideal for layout design usage like online magazines. Whether you want to create layouts for printed books, brochures or digital magazines Adobe InDesign is the tool you need. The flexibility is great as it allows you to easily drag-drop isolated layers and you can resize images with ease. Being part of Creative Cloud you get easy access to the desktop app for PC and Mac. You also get the comparison app Comp CC available for tablets and Smartphone devices including 29 desktop apps and 10 mobile apps. You can also use Behance and Typekit services that enable you to connect your workflow between photography, videos, good designing and web or app development. With Adobe Creative Sync you can share or sync all your work between your desktop and mobile apps so you can work efficiently. Once you join as a member you will get the latest updates and new features with installation decision being solely yours.
- The combining of text and graphics becomes easy.
- The learning curve is very low, ideal for newbies.
- The features that come with InDesign are unbelievable.
- Limited tools for creating graphics.
- The graphic design tools are not as powerful.
- The adjustment of photos is limited as this is not a photo-editing software.
Best Graphic Design Software Compared (2021)
|Best Graphic Design Software||Pricing||Free Version||Ease of Use||Trial||Money Back||Device Supported|
|Adobe Photoshop||$20.99/month||Yes||Moderate||7 Days||30 Days||Mac, Windows|
|Adobe Illustrator||$31.49/month||Yes||Simple||One Month||30 Days||Windows, Mac|
|Inkscape||Free||Yes||Easy to use||Open-source||Free||macOS, Windows, Linux|
|Adobe Indesign||$20.99/mo||Yes||Easy to use||One Month||30 Days||Windows, Mac|
|CorelDRAW||$602||Available||Easy||7 Days||30 Days||Windows, Mac|
Bonus Graphic design software tools
7. Serif Drawplus
This software offers a powerful tool for not just photo designing and editing but, can also use it for producing creative logos, animations, posters, and more. In other words, because of its oodles of illustrative features, it has been ranked as the top graphic design software by Toptenreviews. By providing a rating of 9.2 out of 10, the site has given it a marker of being the best in its league. Serif Drawplus has a low learning curve making it approachable for both graphic designers as well as beginners. Serif Drawplus is loaded with features and functionalities that let you handle every simple to complex design without any difficulty. Moreover, working on intricacies becomes easier with this graphic design software. One can not only work on 3D animations, add effects to the images but also, create vector illustrations. Pros
- Can create a customizable workspace based on your preference.
- Provides extensive support an option to share.
- Lacks some photo effect features like panorama merging, HDR imaging etc.
8. Xara Xtreme
This Xara Xtreme software offers a wide variety of photo editing features and illustration tools. It has a range of extensive features that can assist you in maneuvering the color and texture of your images. Furthermore, it facilitates you to quickly remove any distortion caused by the lens, whatsoever. In fact, the main page offers basic tips and guidelines so as to understand the functioning of the design software. It has certain masking tools available as well. The resizing of images can also be done without having to put the quality at stake. This software has a pretty robust support page that addresses user’s issues and provides solutions for the same. Pros
- Tools are available for both vector and raster images.
- Can export directly to any social media website.
- No history log available; use of undo button to reverse actions.
9. Corel PaintShop
The Corel Paintshop Pro 2020 is the latest version released by the Coral team. It is a seemingly impressive photo editing tool that even helps in photo management. It even possesses professional grade tools that can be easily used by both professionals and newbies. It provides video tutorials and other forms of support forums to better the understanding of the software. It has more than 90 creative filters that can be used to improve the texture and color of your image. It is compatible with image files like RAW, JPG, TIFF, PNG, GIF, PSD and PDF. Pros
- Auto edit option.
- A supporter of batch processing, i.e, multiple files can be edited at the same time.
- Only compatible with windows.
10. Corel PhotoImpact
Corel PhotoImpact provides an easily navigated and friendly interface. The Corel PhotoImpact X3 provides one with a wide collection of designing and editing tools made easily accessible to you. This can make it appear tricky, hence, it has been divided into eight operative fields. ExpressFix or Full Edit mode serve the purpose of editing the photos. ExpressFix provides the option to adjust exposure, color, skin tone and focus with just a click. Whereas, Full Edit has the editing options like portrait touch-ups, enhancements and effects. It has an interesting combination of both basic and advanced tools. It holds the compatibility with 32 file formats inclusive of RAW, JPG, TIFF, PNG, GIF, PSD and animated GIFs. Pros of graphic design tool
- Availability of panorama and HDR imaging tools to create visually captivating effects.
- It offers an extensive support system.
- It has the main docked panel to hold all the other panels and swiftly hide and show them as per requirement.
- Limited sharing features.
- Sluggish development in its software.
- Apart from the above-mentioned graphic design tools which had broad.
Features of graphic design software tool
- A bunch of tools to offer under these tabs, namely, Library, Adjustment, Edit, Layers, Slideshow, and Print.
- A pen tool to draw colored pixels on photo layers.
- History log: serve the purpose of undoing the unwanted changes.
- Cyberlink provides a strengthened support system like support forums, telephone support, video tutorial, user guides, etc.
- Options like Classic Layer Effects, 3D effects, Light Effects, Edge detection etc provides it an edge over other apps.
- Sumopaint offers professional painting tools; over 300 brushes, Animated Brushes, and advanced options like scattering and random rotation are also available.
- Not just a standalone app but a web-based app as well.
- Vector has a low learning curve.
- Its basic graphics editor is free.
14. Google Sketch-up
- A 3D modeling software with full of ease.
- Google sketch-up can conveniently customize everything.
- One can stretch, rotate, copy, paste & even draw lines and shapes.
- One can add model views to pages by using the Pro version.
15. Cinema 4D
- Cinema 4D comes in four levels: Prime, Broadcast, Visualize and Studio.
- Involve 3D animation without any formal training.
- Amazing support for materials and textures.
- Accessible user interface.
- Smooth learning curve.
16. Affinity Designer
- Affinity designer allows an intrinsic zoom-in experience.
- Functions in any color space like RGB, CMYK, LAB, Greyscale.
- Possess CMYK workflow along with ICC color management.
- Compatible with macOS and Windows.
17. ACDSEE Photo Editor
Features of graphic design tool
- Availability of numerous standard photo editing tools.
- One can draw their own web designs or use the software’s pre-designed templates.
- Better sharing options to offer.
- With 3200% as the maximum zooming option. It has a lot of basic editing tools at hand.
- ACDSEE Photo editor offers to import and export options as well.
- A tabbed document interface is used to manage multiple images.
- Highly responsive and said to be one of the “fastest image editor available”
- Paint.net has layers for enriched image composition experience.
- Intuitive and a creative user interface.
What to look for before choosing graphic design software?
Certainly, it doesn’t matter if you are an amateur web designer or a professional digital creative designer, knowing the best graphic design software can be really helpful for you. However, the above-discussed list of graphic design software includes top-notch solutions to help you get started with ease. Indeed, technology has changed the way we work and has given us a new perspective to look at things around us. That being said, choosing the best graphic design software from the available pile of options can be an overwhelming experience for some. However, if you are well-aware of your requirements and goal, then choosing an ideal solution won’t be any tough. If you wish to make the right decision then it’s essential to look for certain things in software.
Ease of Use – Any software you pick for your business must be easy to use. No matter how efficient software is if it’s not simple to use, it will not be of any help to your clients. All the features and functionality it is offering should be convenient to use. However, it should be that simple that even a novice shouldn’t find any problem using your software. Pricing – This is another factor to consider. Yes, any tool that’s free will have a vast customer base (provided, the software you are picking is competent). Whereas, if it is a paid software, then it may require a lot of time to build your customer base. However, it’s not about free or paid solutions, it’s all about the efficiency of any software that drives traffic. Features – Features of any graphic design software should be such that it should not have to make any extra effort to attract visitors. Instead, it should generate people’s interest automatically. Features are the main deciding factor that helps you make your choice. Any quality tool will enable you to create designs of your choice (even the difficult ones) without any technical skills. However, basic knowledge of graphic designing is always an additional help. Beginner-Friendly – It is not feasible to determine which type of visitors you will have on your website. Similarly, it is not possible for graphic design software to figure out which type of or people with what graphic knowledge scale will use their software. So, it is up to you to pick up a solution that is beginner-friendly. You should look for graphic design software that could be used by people with minimal graphic design knowledge.
Which graphic design software tools do you use for designing?
As a graphic designer, knowing which graphic design software tool to use is crucial. With so many graphic design software for beginners available in the market, it is not easy to pick the correct one out but Photoshop is the best. Designing a website and doing away with the burdensome coding can lead you to develop some highly intriguing & professionally looking websites. With TemplateToaster offline website builder software you can design such websites in a matter of minutes. In practically three steps you can bring life to your vision. This website theme designer tends to be compatible with almost all graphic design tools making it flexible to work with. And hence, generate websites design that are no less than visual masterpieces. If you are looking for video compression you must go through video compression software.You can also read Essential Photo editing software , video editing software and best logo designing software for beginners and top Wireframe tools for UI/UX designers. Check out Graphic design trends 2021 and web design trends 2021.
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Can I add Affinity Designer and Affinity Photo to the list. I’ve been using both for the past year after ditching Photoshop (too expensive, too heavy on batteries).
I draw and photo edit on the go with my galaxy smartphone. By doing so, I use apps like Ai, Ac, Snapseed, Picsart and Sketchbook Pro. Each has its own set of goodies that make like a compact toolbox for an on the go photographer./artist
whats good for t shirt designing?
Hi Yakina Grier ,
Ideally it depends upon design. For the time being you should start with Corel Draw or Photoshop, both will do.
I’m still not sure what to choose. I would like to use this, to make UI in games,from the ground up. Do you have any suggestions? And do I have to use an tablet for this?
Thanks in advance
Excellent Post! Points mentioned here are very useful and very informative for every web designers.Thanks.
Great info for beginner graphic designers! Thanks!
I want to design covers for boxes(cartons), which includes natural photographs….
Can any one guide which software is best for use….
CorelDraw has a Mac version as well. Correct it.
Which software is best for learning graphics designing course ?
Thanks for sharing Top graphic design software list.
Adobe Photoshop is always the best.
Hi hope you are doing great
my concern is on how to get NET frame work for my TT soft ware i have dawn loaded hence its failing to install due to Net frame work issues
please help me
I am a 79 year old woman, still quite active, and am looking for the simplest graphic program I can find, solely for fun projects. Have no interest in professional or business things. Anyone out there who can give me a hint on what program to get will be most appreciated.
I assume you are looking for a free tool, Inkscape will be the best for you, if you are going to use it for image editing Gimp will be the right selection. In paid category, Illustrator and Coral will have upper edge.
I would add here the logo creation service logaster – maybe not so popular but easy to use
I use Shutterstock to find patterns I will use for sportswear products. I need to change colors often and been using Fiverr’s resources but it’s a painfully long process and I’d like to do it myself. However, I don’t need or want a complex tool like PS. What software should I use to upload jpeg or vector patterns and easily play with colors and color patterns?
If I would like to design my own family Tree, with photos, text in different directions (horizontal, diagonal, vertical) and ornaments/ illustrations (tree trunk and leafs) and posibility to arrange a large material symetrical. What software do I need?
yall have ligma
Consider adding MyDraw to the list it is a mix of corel and visio…
Which one is the best to design a phone, and i mean 3D drawing, rounded rectangles, enormous choice in colors and it has to be easy to use.
Ace level of list for any newbie designer
Affinity designer and photo are professional graphic design softwares that are alternatives for the old ps and ai programs.
they go along very well with C4D as well
really good level of content
this listing is so much useful for us.
Thanks a ton!.
Hi everyone, I am looking for a program wherein I can get a sample of a color from another source and bring that sample into the program, letting me make a custom color that matches the one I brought in as a sample. I also need something reasonable fast. Free is good, but I probably wouldn’t mind paying. Can Corel Draw do that?
Adobe Photoshop is best
I am very grateful to you for sharing such a large list of tools! Now I’m a freelance writer, and I’ve started to notice that there’s more and more work going on with photos and videos. Do you think that after studying a few of these tools, I will be able to take a freelance job related to video editing and photo editing?
Adobe illustrator is really more advance graphic software tool. most of the designer love illustrator because it provide complete solution like logos, illustration, cover page, menus and so on.
You forgot about Krita…
Hello, this blog is very impressive and helpful for us.
photoshop, gimp and illustrator for beginners, really. These softwares are not the easiest for beginners. They get lost with all the options.
vary good post…
Through the reading of the graphic design of this article, the drawing on the computer has made great progress. However, I am a mechanical sketch designer who is mainly responsible for the graphic overlay of the product. Can I send some articles about Java programs and page beautification?
Thank you for sharing..Useful for me as I am beginner.
Thank you for sharing..Useful for me as I am beginner.
looking for something so l can do photos and clips and stuff for my business myself with out paying anyone what can l use
I am using Inkspace for designing graphic images for my eBook. I am a beginner Blogger and writing my own eBook. Can anyone suggest me any software to make a video using the edited images?
You can use FILMORA Video editing software. It is perfect for a professional video editing.
Hey Jesse, you should also try VideoPad Video editor, it is for beginners and also have 360 degree camera editing feature.
Great list! Please suggest me the best FREE web designing software.
Hello Carol, You can try Sumopaint or Inkspace mentioned in the list. Both are free and good designing softwares.
You can also try GIMP designing tool too. It is free and robust designing tool.
Have anybody used Xara Xtreme for real?
Let me know your experience on that.
I want to design Sportswear and Bikes. Which software should i use according to you?
Can it also give animation to the design ?
Hello Keeth, You should use Adobe Photoshop for designing the stuff and also can create animation in Photoshop.
Hey Keeth, You can also use Cineware for Illustrator for giving 3D looks to your design.
I think Illustrator will work best for you, it has 3d animation features too.
If you are a Adobe fan like me, go with Illustrator, It is a complete package, You can design logos, illustrations, poster etc. It is a vector based system.
I’m also an Adobe fan, and also illustrator for designing. Great tool.
Yaa Gary. Me too I am using Illustrator from along time now. Its been a great experience till. Plus I love its 3D integration using Cineware for Illustrator.
I can truly say that i am a Corel fan and as you said Corel Paintshop pro is coming in 2020. I am looking forward for it. Thanks for mentioning in the article.
Hello Susane, Can we also draw 3D animation with CorelDraw?
Do you know any Corel tool to draw bar codes?
I have just started my wedding card designing business and these software are really expensive for me.
Please suggest me a less pricey or free web designing software.
Hi Jeren, if you are starting designing then InkSpace will work best for you. Thank you!
Thanks Domia for mentioning.
Hey there, I am creating a website for a building contractor and want to design some figures. Which among all the designer softwares you mentioned is fastest ?
Hello there, I am a food blogger, which software would you recommend for designing the background of an image?
Hi Malisa, It depends on your requirements, if you are a newbie, start with something easy like InkSpace , Canva or GIMP , If you are also interested in designing then go with Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator since these products are for hard-core designers.
Btw happy blogging.
Hi there, Is there any mobile app for graphic designing?
Hi, I want to make kid cartoons and include some animation too. Which software would you recommend?
You should use Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop.
Sumopaint is the best free tool for designing. It is very easy to use and also very reliable.
Can I design modules for a game with any of these softwares?
Can i design Mandals with Illustrator?
No, there is no feature in Illustrator to create Mandals.
Adobe InDesign is a great tool for graphic designing, I have bought the license recently and can sync with the workflow easily. My team members are working on other CC apps.
Must say it is the best in designing.
Thanks for the post, The best graphic designing tool is Adobe Illustrator, there is no doubt in this. Works best for vector drawing.
Adobe Illustrator is the best software tool for graphic designing. It has various tools for sharpening and retouching the design.
You are right, Adobe Illustrator is best for Graphic Designing. It has various cool tools for vector designing.
I am new to the world of graphic design and am looking at developing templates that are editable in word or powerpoint for an ecommerce site. I will be hiring a graphic designer to create the templates but wanted to know what type of program they might use so that I don’t sound like a complete novice. Many thanks.
I want to design Bicycles using vector graphics, how can i do it? And which software would you guys recommend for it?
Hello, You should try Adobe Illustrator, It will work best for you.
Can I create a complete landing page with Adobe Illustrator?
You can integrate Illustrator with Adobe Dreamweaver to make a complete web page.
Hello there, Very Impressive post 🙂
I am totally with Adobe Indesign. It is my favorite platform for designing and very convenient too.
Yaa, you are right Padur. Adobe Indesign is a marvelous tool.
Does Adobe InDesign have a mobile application?
Hey there. Good post!
You mentioned Adobe InDesign in the post which is never used for Vector graphics i guess.
can we use photoshop for making animated pictures?
Yes, Photoshop is a great tool for creating animated pics
Biggeners can get good idea by this post that what kind of designing they can make by the use of all these.
You have perfectly explained all designing tools .It is really usefull for bigginers.
I think Photoshop is best graphic design software.
I really liked your content.I had decided to work in illustrator. Could you please tell me some more pros of illustrator, that would would be very helpful to me.
Very nice post! Affinity Designer is best for beginners
Which software is the best among mentioned for complete website design?
Illustrator is the best for making pixel-perfect and any kind of logo.
I have heard about Google Sketch but do not know about the right use of it, can you tell me the same?
I need to create cartoon images for my school websites, which tool should I use for it?
I am new in designing and I was looking for this list with features and its pros and cons, It is really helpful for me, thanks for it.
Adobe is providing really wonderful tools to us every time which helps to make things wonderful.
This is the best article for all beginners to be informed of new and useful features.
Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator both are the most useful designing tools.
Illustrator and Photoshop are best graphic design software.