10-Apps That Rival Design Software
December 19, 2013
•IADT General, Graphic Design
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Although apps can never replace traditional design software such as Adobe Photoshop, they are still extremely useful for creatives on the go to do quick illustrations and fast photo editing. Here is a list of 10 apps for the iPad, iPhone and Android that you'll find useful.
Apps for the iPad
1. Ricoh Pro Production Guide
If you don't understand print terminology, you can't properly prep your files for printing. This app is a pocket guide "cheat sheet," which also includes information about paper weights and proofreader marks. It even includes a guide to keyboard shortcuts for the Mac and PC. Search Ricoh Pro Production Guide in iTunes and download it for free.
2. Handy Photo
Now you have photo editing capabilities right in the palm of your hand. This app allows you to airbrush images and fix most imaging mistakes right on your iPad. The interface leaves the center of the screen open, so you'll have plenty of room to work. Just swipe using the same iPad swiping gestures you normally use. Handy Photo isn't Photoshop, but it's a relatively good program for on-the-go designing.
Create vector drawings—Adobe "Illustratoresque" drawings—with iDesign, an app that allows you to draw right on your iPad, iPhone or iTouch. No need to run home to your computer to use your design software. iDesign quickly polishes your sketches wherever you are.
Apps for the Android
4. Color Mood Designer
Having trouble finding the right color combo? Use Color Mood Designer. This app gives you a quick and easy way to help you select great color combinations. So leave your color wheel at home!
5. Pocket Color Chart
Have you memorized the Pantone color numbering system, the color system used by printers? Probably not. That's why this app is so helpful. Graphic designers need to know the CMYK—Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Key (Black)—color equivalents for Pantone to ensure that the color on screen prints the same on paper. The Pocket Color Chart removes the guesswork—and it's convenient.
6. Photoshop Express for Android
It can't get any better than this—Adobe Photoshop in the palm of your hand. Photoshop Express allows you to crop, rotate, change colors and add filters or effects to the images stored in your free Photoshop.com account.
7. Free Draw
Another drawing app, Free Draw allows you to do free hand sketches right on your Android. When you're done, save your work right on the phone or email it to clients or friends. Even better, the app is configured for social media, which makes it easy to share your drawings on Facebook or Twitter.
Apps for the iPhone
8. Adobe Ideas
Adobe Ideas is a miniversion of Adobe Illustrator for your iPhone. Create designs right on your phone and later sync them with your iPad or desktop (if you have a subscription to Apple's Creative Cloud). And here's a treat—Adobe offers it for free.
This app makes it easy to create vector graphics by turning the images on your phone into black-and-white vector graphics. Think of the time you can save by not having to trace your images in Adobe Illustrator. Design students can also use this app to make quick logos, graphics and stencils.
If you're a graphic design student, you understand the importance of type. Typecast allows you to play with more than 23,000 fonts extracted from four different websites—Fontdeck, Typekit, Font.com and Google Fonts. Best of all, it's free.
Photo credit: Flickr