Posting almost anything online requires images. An exception can be made for Twitter, but images are undoubtedly crucial for any other online or working platform.

And why not, when they help you attract others’ attention easily. People are quickly captivated when seeing colors and designs, in a way no work of text can.

But to create stunning images, especially graphics that can be used in selling or marketing online, you need tools—amazing tools—which can help you create gorgeous graphics that can attract people’s attention.

There’s a teeny-tiny problem though. Lots of tools are available for grab, and you as a user certainly wouldn’t want to waste a good portion of your time skimming until page 10 of Google’s search results page.

To help you with that, we bring you the 8 best graphic design software that will help you put some fantastic artwork out there!

8 Best Graphic Design Software 

These are some of the best tools if you want to get into graphic design business or interested to do freelancing by working from home.

#1. Adobe Photoshop

Photoshop is so popular that it has become a legend of its own. 

After all, one usually doesn’t hear a brand product used as a verb—only Googling can give a tough competition to Photoshopping. 

Even though it is not made specifically for graphic designers, with the whole array of features Adobe Photoshop provides, it can flawlessly work like that.

Using Photoshop, you can create beautiful-looking illustrations and 3D paintings. Different brushes help you get the perfect touch. Moreover, with advanced tools such as brush smoothing, paint symmetry, luminance control, you get more room for customizing your work.

Features:

  • Collaboration Tools
  • Content Import/Export
  • Content Sharing
  • Drag & Drop
  • Image Editing
  • Image Library
  • Pre-built Templates
  • Real-Time Editing
  • Search/Filter
  • Watermarking

Pros

  • Photoshop comes packed with 3D design capabilities.
  • Different drawing tools and typography options are provided.
  • One can easily transfer files across different platforms.
  • Complimentary mobile application is offered so that you can edit on the go.
  • Various design tools are offered packed with responsive graphics.

Cons

  • For a new user, it can get very hard to use. 
  • Less support for editing SVG files.

Pricing

Photoshop is offered as a subscription. For users who want only Photoshop, it starts at $20.99 per month. Other subscription options are also offered bundled with Adobe’s other software tools.c

#2. CorelDraw

CorelDraw is usually known as the cheaper alternative for Photoshop, but that is a common misconception. CorelDraw packs some really impressive features under the hood. 

With all the features included, it does pretty much what Photoshop can do. 

It comes with some advanced features, such as AI Livesketch, which converts raw sketching into accurate vector curves. For new users, it offers them customizable layout options. They can go to the community website and find different macros suitable for their workflow.

Features:

  • 2D Drawing
  • Batch Processing
  • Collaboration Tools
  • Color Matching
  • Content Import/Export
  • Content Sharing
  • Data Import/Export
  • Drag & Drop
  • Fashion Illustrations
  • Image Editing
  • Image Library
  • Image Tracing
  • Pattern Layout / Print / Cut
  • Pattern, Color & Art Storage
  • Pre-built Templates
  • Presentation Tools
  • Real-Time Editing
  • Rendering
  • Search/Filter
  • Templates
  • Textile Pattern Design
  • Watermarking

Pros

  • Multiple import-export options are provided. Users can export files into 48 different formats, such as SVG, TIFF, JPG, etc. They can also import 35 formats like PowerPoint and PDF.
  • A built-in online digital library is offered, which offers various types of images and pictures to work upon.
  • Works flawlessly with the touch stylus pen. 
  • Usually, editing images requires a lot of processing power. CorelDraw offers you a GPU acceleration feature to work on the images efficiently. 

Cons

  • Tough to use for first-time users.
  • Users don’t get any mobile app. So the portability of your work is not well supported.

Pricing

They also offer you a 15-day free trial period and a 30-day money-back guarantee program so that users can better judge for themselves.

#3. InkScape

One of the few completely open-sourced tools, despite that tag, Inkscape is a powerful tool that web designers, illustrators, and online entrepreneurs can use. 

All basic features can be customized easily, such as gradients, shapes, paths, text, and so on. It is self-intuitive. New users can easily start playing with shapes, applying gradients and colors, etc.

InkScape also enjoys a robust development community and gets constant updates.

Features:

  • 2D Drawing
  • Data Import/Export
  • Image Editing
  • Rendering

Pros

  • Users can easily create and edit vectors using the whole set of different tools.
  • Preset categories of filters are provided, which users can use to save time.
  • Multiple gradients are offered, which you can combine using a built-in tool.
  • Free of cost.
  • The software is open-sourced. If you are a programmer, you can customize it to your wants.

Cons

  • Slower processing speed compared to other software.
  • The Mac version of the tool is buggy.

Pricing

Since it is open-sourced, it is entirely free to use.

#4. Adobe Illustrator CC

Adobe’s Illustrator can be said as an offshoot of Photoshop. It was meant specifically for working on vectors. As such, you can create gorgeous-looking artwork, designs, and icons. 

To make the users job easier and more productive, it comes packed with prebuilt templates and presets. 

There’s a companion mobile app to Illustrator, which is arguably one of the best in the market for graphic designing on the phone.

Features:

  • Presentation Tools
  • CAD Tools
  • Color Matching
  • Fashion Illustrations
  • Pattern Layout / Print / Cut

Pros

  • It comes integrated with Adobe Stock, which provides users with millions of images, videos, templates, and graphics to use.
  • It is packed with Adobe font integration, which gives tens of hundreds of fonts to use.
  • Graphics generated from the tool are small in size. These graphics can be easily added and sent through email.
  • It uses advanced equations from maths to generate rich graphics. 
  • Illustrator is connected to other Adobe products. So if you have a Creative Cloud subscription, you can quickly move your work around across different software.

Cons

  • It takes up a lot of memory space in your device.
  • You can find cheaper options available.
  • It’s hard to start but easy to master. Once you are acquainted with all the features, your overall productivity increases.

Pricing

Like Photoshop, their monthly plans start at $20.99, which includes only the app.

#5. Snappa

Snappa is a cloud-based graphics editor for social media, personal, and marketing purposes. With Snappa, entrepreneurs and small teams can save time and money. The platform supports collaboration among team members, enabling each of them to work together in finishing a project. 

On top of that, graphics in the Snappa library are free, allowing small businesses and individual entrepreneurs to save financial resources. users can truly create graphics in a snap. It has tools that let designers come up with art for business use at a faster pace.

You don’t need to scour multiple stock libraries, worry about usage rights, or pay for the best background images anymore. Whether you’re creating Twitter header, a Facebook cover, a Pinterest Pin, an Instagram post, Google Display Ads, or anything in between, the existing templates will help you get to the exact perfect sized image

They have over 5,000 image templates with more being added all of the time… That means you don’t need to hire a designer. You can leverage the designers that Snappa has on their team.

Features:

  • Data Visualization
  • Templates
  • Filtering
  • Image Database
  • Image Editor
  • Collaboration Tools
  • Graphic Editor
  • Visual Assets Library
  • Graphic Resize
  • Folders & Organization
  • Custom Fonts
  • Social Media Connection
  • Team Collaboration
  • Video Tutorials

Pros

  • Lots of templates available for different devices and platforms such as iOS and Web.
  • Lots of plugins available for specific purposes.
  • It autosaves the progress step by step, giving you greater control over your work.
  • Via the cloud, users can collaborate with others.
  • Can mirror designs on different devices to see how it’s working.

Cons

  • Only available for Mac users.
  • While accessing from the cloud, one doesn’t get the high-resolution quality of the images.
  • Compared to Adobe Illustrator, only a limited number of illustration features are offered.

Pricing

It Provides free version for limited function. For All Features available at Pro version at $10/month And For Team at $20/month.

#6. PaintShop Pro

PaintShop Pro is a mature and powerful photo-editing program that reached a high level of excellence years ago. For novices, PSP has integrated guides and tutorials to help them become skilled and more creative.

But it also offers a remarkable depth of quality features and tools that experienced users want and need.

Another noteworthy feature of this software is the face detection technology. This application makes use of this technology to automatically cluster photos depending on their subjects.

In addition, the program support over 40 file formats including the most common types like JPG, RAW, PNG, PSD, TIFF, GIF, and PDF. This gives you the freedom to import virtually any image into the application.

It easy to optimize photos for web use. The application features a slicer tool that enables users to cut images into smaller pieces. This is a great functionality, especially when editing and uploading photos for online content. It helps you create images that will take a short time to load.

Features:

  • Project Management
  • User Interface
  • Image Editing
  • Sharing Tools
  • Color Correction
  • Lasso Tools
  • Layers
  • Magic Wand
  • Photo Stitching
  • Red-Eye Correction
  • Transparent Backgrounds
  • Adjusting Image’ Colors
  • Restore photos
  • Automatic photo template rendering
  • High-resolution image output
  • Photo Enhancement
  • Hardware Support

Pros

  • Powerful effects and editing tools.
  • Good assortment of vector drawing tools.
  • Automatic noise removal.
  • Great help system with integrated learning tools.
  • Powerful features and creative tools for advanced users.
  • Touch-screen compatible.
  • New ability to copy/paste layer styles.

Cons

  • Inconsistent interface.
  • No macOS version.
  • Some operations slow.
  • Windows only.
  • Not a compelling upgrade.

Pricing

It Provides 30 days Free Trail. The pro version unlocks all the features, which at $69.99 And Ultimate version is currently available at $89.99.

#7. GIMP

GIMP is another great open-sourced tool that offers you premium features at no cost. 

Basic features such as Bezier curves, filters, and layer masks are present. Other advanced features such as noise reduction from images, different brushes and colors, and image enhancement features are also included. 

Features:

  • Image Editing
  • Search/Filter
  • Templates

Pros

  • Lightweight in nature, so it is fast and doesn’t take up a lot of memory.
  • Lots of tutorials are provided to introduce the basics of the tool.
  • Neat interface, perfect for new users who don’t want to get overwhelmed.
  • Users get two interfaces to choose from: single-window UI or multi-window UI. 

Cons

  • Slow updates because the dev community is not active. 
  • A lot of Mac users have complained about the interface.

Notice Title

Free of any cost, as it is open-sourced.

#8. Stencil

Stencil is a web-based graphic design tool built for anyone trying to quickly create digital design assets (aka social media & website images) with few to no graphic design skills. The software present fun, simple, and lightweight ways of creating stunning visual content.

Its ease of use is truly commendable; whether you have used an image editor before or not, Stencil is a snap. It takes you seconds to generate beautiful looking images faster than you ever thought.

The platform provides more than 1 million royalty free photos. These public domain photos are dominated by super high resolution and are ready to aid your creativity. They can be used for all purposes whether personal or commercial without any attribution. The photos are powered by renowned teams including Pexels and Pixabay which means they are safe for use.

Features:

  • Create unlimited images/month
  • Over 1.3 million photos
  • Over 1 million icons and graphics
  • 2200+ Google fonts
  • Fonts upload
  • Logo/watermarks
  • Keep up to 100 favorites
  • 650+ Amazing templates
  • 100 Instagram SMS/month
  • Premium support

Pros

  • Stencil is perfect for that. They have the templates ready where you just need to select the type of image you want to create and they automatically adjust it to the desired size.
  • I like the library of free photos that you can use, as there are a lot to choose from. I also like how easy this is to use.
  • I love how there are so many famous quotes I can pick from. I can put the famous quotes on my images as well.

Cons

  • Before a designer had to resize all images and it was slow
  • Using commercial fonts should require an upgrade but restricting Google Fonts just seems stingy.

Pricing

It is subscription-free (for Hobbyist).

It provides Free Trial. It provides $9/month for Pro Plan And $12/month for Unlimited Plan.

Software

UI

Support

Platform

Trial

Pricing


Adobe Photoshop

Feature rich interface.


New users can get overwhelmed by options.

Good community and online support in the form of guides and videos.

Windows/Mac OS

7 days free trial.


Subscription only.


Corel Draw


Good balance between user friendly and providing features.


Customer and community support is dependable.


Windows/MacOS


15 days trial.


Both one time fee and subscription available.


Ink Scape


User-friendly. Does not have all advanced features.


Good community support.


Linux/Windows/MacOS

Free

Free


Adobe Illustrator


Can be bit non user-friendly at times


Same as Photoshop.


Windows/MacOS


7 days trial.


Subscription only.


Snappa


User-friendly.


Decent support.


Windows/MacOS


 Free/Subscription


You Can Start With Free Version


PaintShop Pro


Good balance between user friendly and providing features.


Very Good support.


Windows


30 days


Subscription only.


GIMP


Simple and easy to use.


Support is dicey.


Windows

Free

Free


Stencil


User-friendly.


Live support.


Windows/Mac OS


 Free/Subscription


Free plan (for Hobbyist)

Conclusion

Finally, we come to a wrap in covering the best graphic design software.

There are some explosive software like Photoshop that gives you a whole new dimension of working, while there are few others like GIMP that can offer you industry-standard features, free of cost.

Ultimately, it is your call. Making a list of your personal requirements can help you zero in on the best graphic design software you need.