20+ Graphic Design Software you Need to Familiarize with

When it comes to graphic designing, there’s definitely a wide range of graphic design software for designers to choose from. And, as a graphic designer, you may be having your preference. However, depending on the nature of your projects, you may want to use a number of software to get the project done perfectly. For instance, you may need color palette generators or font generators to incorporate into those projects that you’ve done using your preferred photo editing software. Today, we share with you some of the software that you really need to know about as a graphic designer.

Adobe Photoshop

A creation of Adobe Systems way back in 1990, Adobe Photoshop is perhaps the most widely known photo editing software out there that designers can use for both personal and commercial purposes. With this software, you can easily create and edit multi-layered raster images. Besides, the software supports masks, color models like CMYK and RGB as well as alpha compositing. While Photoshop comes with its own file formats (PSB, PSD), it also supports a number of other graphic file formats such as BMP, JPG and GIF. Photoshop also allows you to create impressive arty text effects.

Some of the impressive features in the latest versions of Adobe Photoshop include:

Smart focusing: this feature enables you to spot the area or subject on the image under focus. By applying Focus Area, you can select the detected section of the image for cropping. Even though it may not be accurate always, you can fix the selection by fine tuning it.

New blur effects: the newer Adobe Photoshop versions have incorporated a number of blur filters including the Field, the Path and Spin. The Field blur gives your images an out-of-focus effect. However, unlike the Gaussian or Radial blur, the ultimate Field blur effect closely resembles what can be achieved from a real camera. Applying the Path blur filter gives your images an impression of being blown by wind. For the Spin blur, a spinning object will seem to be moving faster than how it actually is.

Wide angle fix: one common problem experienced when taking images with wide angle lenses is that the image’s edges become distorted or curved. However, you can now correct this problem with the new Adobe Photoshop feature by eliminating, or at least reducing the distortions on your images.

Adobe Illustrator

Adobe Illustrator is used for creating vector graphic images which are in turn used for marketing tools, logos and other personal as well as commercial applications. You can use this software to create charts, flyers, posters, diagrams and vector illustrations. Adobe illustrator is used hand in hand with Adobe Photoshop. While Photoshop enables you to manipulate photos and create powerful photorealistic computer illustrations, Illustrator provides you with the necessary enrichments through typesetting and other kinds of graphics.

Adobe Animate

Initially known as Macromedia Flash before changing to Adobe Flash, Adobe Animate is also a creation of Adobe Systems. With this software, you can create powerful vectors and computer animations, which can be published on TV or on the internet. Besides vectors, Animate also supports raster graphics, audio as well as video embedding.

Adobe Color CC

Formerly known as Adobe Kuler, Adobe Color CC is a desktop app from Adobe Systems that can help you create color palettes. You can then share the color palettes on the internet to other graphic designers or synchronize them with other Adobe graphic design apps like Illustrator and Photoshop. You’ll find this app quite handy for creating and editing color themes from existing presets or images.

Adobe Typekit

This is an online service that enables you to synchronize fonts for use in your computer or website. All that you need to start enjoying the services is subscribe to one of the plans offered.  The fonts on Typekit come with remarkable quality. Plus, you can use them quite effortlessly regardless of where you’d like to apply them. You can use the fonts for creating your web pages, marketing tools and just about any publishing material. Once you’ve subscribed to the service, just synchronize your devices to fetch your fonts wherever.

Fontstruct

This is a free online font-creation software that allows you to create your own fonts in the easiest manner possible. You make the fonts with the help of geometric shapes arranged in a grid-like pattern. You’ll find the fonts created with this app quite handy in your Windows or Mac programs. And, you can opt to keep the fonts you’ve created to yourself or share them online to others.

Adobe InDesign

If you’re a graphic or productions artist, then you’ll find this graphic design software quite handy especially if you’re charged with the task of creating and publishing printable materials for the public. You can use InDesign to create great-looking posters, brochures, flyers, banners, newspapers and even books.

Today, InDesign comes with a completely new fresh look and a number of handy features that can help you create great graphic designs. The graphic design software now supports 64-bit devices thanks to its remarkable speed and stability. You have a whole range of fonts to choose from in the new InDesign version. And, browsing through the vast fonts has been made super easy with the new Font Filter and Font Search features. You’ll find making Quick Response (QR) codes super easy. And, you can opt to make your QR code an email, web hyperlink or a business card.

PicMarkr  Pro

This graphic design software allows you to incorporate a digital watermark in your images to give them a copywrited or protected appeal. Besides, you can use it to rotate and rename your set of images, as well as incorporate text and logos.

CoreIDRAW

CoreIDRAW, a Corel Corporation creation is a graphics editor that was first released to designers way back in 1989. You can use this software to edit your vector graphics. It works much like Adobe’s Illustrator and, it’s great for editing 2D images such as posters and logos. CoreIDRAW is one software that supports a host of file formats from raster to vectors including PSD, AI, EPS, etc. The most current version of this software features enhanced photo editing tools . You can apply these tools to customize and fix images in quite a number of doable ways. Plus, you can effortlessly customize CoreIDRAW’s workspace UI to your preference.

Tableau Public

This is a free online service by Tableau Software that enables you to publish data visualizations online. You can then embed the published visualizations on your web pages, share them on social media or by email and let other users download them. With this graphic design software, you can effortlessly create data visualizations with multiple-linked dashboards. This presents users with varied views of the data and allows them to choose subsets of the preferred data. Definitely, you’ll love the great tools that Tableau Public comes with for filtering and selecting particular data. Plus, you do not need any programming for you to manage the software.

Autodesk Sketchbook Pro

This handy graphics designing and editing software from Autodesk Inc allows you to come up with animated illustrations and concept sketching with the aid of its radial interface design. Sketchbook was first released in July, 2005 by Alias Systems Corporation before being halted when Autodesk acquired Alias in October of the same year. However, Sketchbook resurfaced in April, 2008 with the release of Sketchbook Pro 2009 to the consumers. The most current version of this graphic design software was released to the public in May, 2015.

Autodesk Maya

Autodesk Maya or simply Maya is a Multi-platform 3D graphics design software originally created by Alias Systems Corporation but currently developed by Autodesk Inc. You’ll find Maya quite handy for creating 3D applications for movie games, video games and TV shows. With the software’s Facial authoring feature, you can create facial animations or even correct deformations on your shapes. Time Editor enables you to edit your animations at high levels. The Animation layers feature allows you to customize existing animations without making changes to the original work.

Autodesk Mudbox

Mudbox, originally created by Skymatter, is a computer-based 3D editing software currently developed by Autodesk. The software allows you to create high resolution digital sculptures and texture paintings. Besides, you can use it as a design tool for your other graphic artistic works. With Mudbox, you can paint your 3D models in different formats with remarkable accuracy thanks to its professional digital sculpting and painting toolset. The new caliper tool allows you to find out the measurement between two points on the model. This ensures that the meshes match perfectly with the scale in real world.

Pixlr

This is a free online, cloud-based photo editor originally created and owned by Ola Sevandersson, a Swedish programmer in 2008, before Autodesk acquired the software in 2011. Besides the desktop version, you can also download other Pixlr apps like O-Matic and Express on your Android.

Mari

Mari, a 3D painting software, is a creation of the Foundry Visionmongers first released to the public in July 2010. You can design and modify your digital 3D paintings and textures quite effortlessly with this software. You’ll find Mari handy especially if you have large texture sets to create for movies and shows that require loads of special effects.

GIMP

GIMP is a great free, downloadable, open-source raster graphics editor software, just like Adobe Photoshop. You can use GIMP to modify and edit your images, free-form illustrations, convert format of your images, and perform many other tasks. The most recent version of GIMP can run on different operating systems including MS Windows, Linux, MacOS, AmigaOS and Solaris. In addition, the software supports a number of graphic files formats such as JPG, PNG and GIF. It features a host of enhancement tools to let you retouch imperfections on your digital images to create the best out of the images. Plus, you can easily customize GIMP’s UI to your taste.

Gliffy

Gliffy is a multi-platform graphic design software intended to create flow charts, diagrams as well as floor plans. The HTML5 cloud-based app allows you to create the charts and diagrams and even share them online in real-time. Plus, it features a vast selection of templates to help you get started hassle-free.

ColoRotate

ColoRotate is a 3D graphic design tool that lets you view and edit colors. With this tool, you can experiment with assorted colors to come up with patterns that befit your project the most. It allows you to compare, share and use colors in 2D or 3D images to experiment with the effects. ColoRotate presents you with a host of palettes to select from. Plus, you can opt to sync the palettes or mix them up to get the color of your preference.

PiktoChart

If you’re charged with the task of creating infographics, then you’ll find this online tool quite handy. With this tool, you can effortlessly create powerful infographics with the help of its assortment of themed templates. Even if you’re quite inexperienced in the industry, you can still create professional-looking infographics with PiktoChart.

Pixelmator

This graphics editor from Pixelmator Limited is solely designed for MacOS. The software allows you to edit your images in a layers-based manner, manage color of your images and fix imperfections on the images. In addition, you can integrate the software with other MacOS apps like iPhoto and convert files hassle-free through Automator actions.

Autotracer

This is a free online file conversion tool that helps you convert your raster graphic images to vectors via a process referred to as tracing or vectorization. If you’d like to use your stock raster images for your design projects, this is a powerful tool to use. However, raster images are liable to pixelate particularly when enlarged. Therefore, remember to convert the images to vectors first to maintain their quality.

Canva

Canva is a free online graphic design software that has been around since January, 2012. It comes with a remarkably easy-to-use interface thanks to its drag-drop feature and a host of graphics, images as well as fonts to select from. Whether you’re an average computer user or a seasoned graphic designer you can do great designs with Canva quite easily.

Definitely, you don’t need to use all of the above graphic design software that we’ve just shared with you at the same time. However, there’s need to familiarize with a number of them, just in case you’d want to use them at some point in your graphic designing career. It’s our hope that this article has presented you with a wider view of the assorted graphic design software and tools that you can get out there to accomplish your designing tasks professionally.