The Top 20 Graphic Design Tools of 2020

The Best Graphic Design Programs


The Top 20 Graphic Design Tools of 2020

Are you a graphic designer looking to step-up their game? Or maybe you’re just starting in this field, and you would like a head start? Fret not, we have got you covered! Some people say that to be a good graphic designer; you need to have innate talent. And although that once may have been true, nowadays, almost anyone can design if they have the right tools.

To help you along, we have put together a quick list of the top 20 graphic design tools of 2020 that have been recommended by top-notch graphic designers. These tools will improve your skills. And if you still find yourself lacking in some areas but would like a high-end graphic design for your brand, edirect has the best graphic design services in Dubai.

From digital design to print design, at edirect, we do it all. So, it’s up to you! But for now, let’s dive into these amazing tools and see what you can do with them!

1). Adobe Photoshop

Let’s start with the classics and Adobe Photoshop is one of those graphic design tools that have been around for the longest time but keeps reinventing itself and dominating the field. This is like the bible for photo editing in graphic design.

You can get Photoshop as a stand-alone, or you can get the complete Adobe Creative Suite which comes with some other goodies, like Illustrator and Premiere. Some of its key features are its friendly interface, which is highly customisable, the active synchronisation with the Adobe Creative Cloud, and the free availability of this software!

2). Procreate

This is an app exclusively made for iPad, but it’s such an amazing tool for designers because it helps to break down a designer’s steps when he’s illustrating something. You can use this app with the Apple Pencil to draw your pictures directly on the iPad’s screen, which will make the experience even better for those who enjoy drawing on paper.

Overall, it’s a super intuitive app, and illustrators will love it.

3). Inkscape

Vector-drawing beginners will love this software. It’s free, and it’s super user-friendly, especially if you come from an Adobe background. One of its main features is that it allows designers to scale their drawings without stretching them in the process. This will come as a relief for many that have faced this issue in the past.

Another great feature is that Inkscape also comes equipped with Bezier handles, which makes moving your vector nodes so much easier! You can also use third-party plugins and install them into Inkscape to use them in your designs.


When it comes to typography, this website is the king. It offers an immense collection of fonts to download directly to your computer and most of them are free. There’s also a pretty cool tool called WhatTheFont that allows designers to identify a particular font they see online whether it’s on an image or a site.

It also offers a paid subscription with more fonts available for download, but if you don’t want to pay for this version, with the free one you still have access to hundreds of fonts, so you should be covered!

5). Clip Studio Paint

A great alternative to the Adobe Suite, Clip Studio Paint is an amazing tool for graphic designers on the lookout for a budget subscription. It even offers a free 6-month trial! If you’re a digital artist, you will love this graphic design tool because it’s easy to use and very affordable too!

6). Ron’s Brushes

If illustration and digital painting is your thing, then you cannot miss out on this tool. Ron’s Brushes allows you to create high-quality effects for your designs and a vast array of digital environments.

Although Ron’s Brushes is aimed at advanced graphic designers, it should still make it onto everyone’s list all the same. You can find Ron’s Brushes at Daz3D.

7). Affinity Designer

Another great budget alternative to Adobe Illustrator. It’s easy to use and, quite surprisingly, it’s faster than Illustrator!

Some of its best features include:

  • A dual environment, which allows designers to work both in pixel art and vector art environments without having to open other applications.
  • An amazing zoom tool which can go as far as 1 million percent without compromising accuracy.
  • An iPad version, which is as powerful as its desktop companion.

                        “Take your graphic design services to the next level!”

8). Astute Phantasm

This is a plugin tool designed to be used with Adobe Illustrator, and it is used to taper and add gradients to your halftones. The effects you can achieve with this plugin are astounding, and any graphic designer that wants to create three-dimensional effects will adore it.

If you want to give this plugin a test run, you can head over to Adobe’s YouTube channel where you will find a tutorial. Alternatively, you can purchase it at Astute Graphics.

9). ipad pro and the apple pencil

If you’re an illustrator, you cannot miss out on this. It is truly a revolutionary tool that will mark a before and after in your illustrating career. The Apple Pencil’s precision is remarkable, and the iPad’s screen size and resolution will ramp-up your game completely.

Once you try illustrating like this, you will not want to go back to your pc and mouse!

10). Gimp

This tool is perfect for editing photos. It offers most of Photoshop’s features but for free! It’s super high-quality and user-friendly. So, if you don’t use it already, we encourage you to give it a try! What makes this tool so great is its flexibility. You can customise its interface almost in its entirety, and there are many plugins designed by the community which will come in handy.

11). Sketch

Sketch is a great low-cost option for UI/UX designers. Its strength lies in web, app, and interface design, but it’s vector-based.

Something pretty cool about this software is that it comes with a large library of artboard templates that you can use for iOS and responsive web design layouts. So, if you don’t have that much time to pull off an amazing design from scratch, these templates will do most of the work for you.

It also comes with a great selection of plugins, and it’s easy to collaborate with other designers using this platform.

12). Xara Designer Pro X

Xara leans towards the more advanced field of design, but it’s a pretty robust tool that is majorly used for web and print design solutions. This software is super-fast (probably one of the fastest out there) and its performance is super sound overall. It allows users to make infinite changes through redo and undo options.

It also comes with a drag-and-drop feature that is highly intuitive, and that will save you a lot of time when designing your pieces.

13). huesnap

This tool is great for designers because it lets them withdraw the exact colours from a picture to use in their designs. Once you have them, you can put together a colour palette and start working!

Huesnap is one of the best colour palette tools in the design market. It’s easy to use, and the colour extracting fidelity is remarkable.

14). Trello

When it comes down to project management, Trello is one of the easiest and most friendly project management tools out there. It allows users to use infinite Kanban boards to organise their projects in a very visual way.

This tool comes in handy when you have multiple clients, and you don’t want to lose time switching from one project to the next. With Trello, you can get all your projects into a single workspace.

15). Google Calendar

Another great project management tool, Google Calendar allows you to administer your projects, meetings, deadlines, and anything you want really into a single space. You can set reminders and sync your account with your Gmail account, as well as share your notifications with a simple click.

16). Momentum

If you’re struggling with creativity, Momentum will inspire you every time you open a new tab with a motivational quote and a beautiful background picture. You can also write down a to-do list of your daily tasks and check them off once you’ve completed them. And what’s more, you can also save your most used links and access them quickly from the same page!

17). Zoom

Every graphic designer knows the importance of having a chat with their clients to understand what they want and receive feedback. Zoom is the most popular video conferencing app on the market right now. You can have HD video and audio sessions every time you use it, and you can even record the meetings to view them again later!

18). ApproveMe

When you work freelance, you know you need to rely on a good contract, and ApproveMe does that for you. If you have a WordPress site, you can easily integrate it and start using their graphic design templates to provide your clients with trustworthy contracts.

19). Boomerang

Sometimes graphic designers don’t have time to answer emails right away and this is where Boomerang comes along. It allows you to schedule pre-written emails and have the software remind you to send them later. You will never forget to reply to your clients again!

The Top 20 Graphic Design Tools of 2020

20). Quickbooks online

If you’re freelancing, you know the importance of keeping track of your finances. Now you don’t need to worry about this anymore. With Quickbooks, you can do this easily. It offers great customer support and some high-end features to keep your financial records neat and tidy.

In conclusion

Now you have all the best tools for graphic designers of 2020 at your disposal you will be able to perform your job quickly and easily. However, learning how to use all these tools can be very time-consuming. Sometimes it’s best to delegate, and that’s where edirect comes along.

We offer a vast array of graphic design services that go from print services like flyers and posters to digital ones, like proposals and signage. So, if you’re interested in that kind of service, we would be happy to have you!

edirect – Dubai’s Best Web Design Agency

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