Being a graphic designer is fun, rewarding, and exciting at times. But that only comes after you’ve mastered at least a few of the Adobe products. Only then, can you call yourself a graphic designer and have the confidence to take on complex design work. But not everyone starts out that way, and Adobe products tend to be intimidating and have a very steep learning curve. Here are a list of awesome graphic design software that even beginners can use to get their feet wet.
Yes, I know it’s an Adobe product, but don’t whine just yet. Photoshop is the foundation of most what it means to be a designer. You may not need to know the others, but you definitely need to know Photoshop. So if there’s ONE product that you absolutely HAVE to slave over in order to master, make it Photoshop. It will be well worth your investment of time, sweat, and tears later. I promise.
Pixlr is a free online software that lets you do most of the basic functions of Photoshop. So if you’re still a bit scared and don’t want to commit just yet, give Pixlr a try. It has a similar interface as Photoshop, except it’s all in the clouds and you don’t need to install anything to your computer to begin designing. There are definitely a lot of features missing, but it will do nicely for your basic editing.
Gimp is a cross platform design tool that’s complex enough to take on challenging work and simple enough for beginners to try. It also has an extensive community constantly updating and supporting the platform, making it a friendly starting point for early stage designers. Many designers who started using GIMP ended up staying on GIMP given how flexible and versatile it is. Although Photoshop is loaded with more features, GIMP has just enough features and it’s cross platform and high customization nature maintains a strong and loyal fan base.
If you’re into FREE, then look no further! Inkscape is your Illustrator alternative and is perfect for Logos, illustrations, and vector designs. There’s also a strong community that constantly upload tutorials and guides online. So learning how to use Inkscape should be fairly easy even for beginners. It’s also available on multiple platforms, making it a flexible tool that you can depend on if you have multiple machines using different operating systems. However there is one major drawback you should know about. It can be very slow.
For those who absolutely despite learning and don’t wish to be a graphic designer, Canva is perfect for you. By no means is Canva considered a professional tools. But it is a drag & drop online software that you can access on your browser and quickly edit templates to get the designs you want. It’s great for flyers, banners, ads, and anything that doesn’t require too much customization. It’s also 100% free, making it a great tool for just about anyone who just wants to get a quick design done.