Procreate is a leading digital illustration app for iPad, renowned for its extensive brush library, powerful layer system, and user-friendly interface. With its adaptable tools, it's perfect for both pros and enthusiasts to create beautiful digital artwork.
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Mar 27, 2020
Jul 9, 2024
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Procreate is a leading digital illustration app


In the ever-evolving world of digital art, tools that offer versatility, efficiency, and a rich set of features are highly sought after. Procreate, developed by Savage Interactive, has emerged as a leading application on the iPad for creating stunning digital artwork. With its wide array of brushes, layers, and editing tools, Procreate provides artists with a comprehensive platform to unleash their creativity. This article explores the various aspects of Procreate, from its standout features to its limitations and alternatives.

Key Features

1. Brush Library

Procreate offers an extensive brush library with over 200 default brushes, catering to different styles and techniques. These brushes range from pencils and inks to charcoal and airbrushes, allowing artists to experiment with various textures and effects. Additionally, users can create custom brushes or import brushes from other artists, adding a personal touch to their artwork.

2. Layer System

Procreate’s layer system is a powerful feature that facilitates complex compositions. Artists can add, delete, and merge layers, as well as adjust opacity, blend modes, and layer masks. This flexibility makes it easier to manage different elements of an artwork independently and achieve intricate details.

3. QuickShape

QuickShape is a feature that automatically corrects shapes to be perfectly symmetrical. Whether drawing circles, squares, or polygons, QuickShape ensures precision and saves time, making it ideal for artists who require accuracy in their designs.

4. Animation Assist

Procreate includes an animation tool called Animation Assist, which allows users to create frame-by-frame animations directly within the app. With features like onion skinning and adjustable frame rates, artists can bring their creations to life effortlessly.

5. Time-Lapse Recording

Procreate automatically records a time-lapse video of the drawing process, which can be exported and shared. This feature is invaluable for artists who want to showcase their workflow, create tutorials, or simply review their creative process.

6. Customizable Interface

The app’s interface is highly customizable, enabling users to arrange tools and panels according to their preferences. This customization enhances the user experience, making it easier to focus on the creative process without unnecessary distractions.

Pros and Cons


  • Intuitive Interface: Procreate’s user-friendly interface makes it accessible for beginners while offering advanced tools for professionals.
  • Extensive Brush Collection: The wide variety of brushes and the ability to create custom ones provide endless creative possibilities.
  • High Performance: Procreate is optimized for the iPad, ensuring smooth performance even with complex projects.
  • Affordable: Compared to other professional digital art software, Procreate is relatively inexpensive with a one-time purchase fee.
  • Offline Capability: Procreate can be used without an internet connection, making it ideal for artists on the go.


  • Platform Limitation: Procreate is only available on the iPad, which restricts its use for users of other platforms.
  • Learning Curve: While the interface is intuitive, mastering Procreate’s full potential requires time and practice.
  • No Vector Support: Procreate lacks vector graphic support, which may be a drawback for artists who require scalable artwork.


1. Adobe Photoshop: A staple in the digital art industry, Adobe Photoshop offers a comprehensive suite of tools for photo editing and digital illustration. It is accessible on a number of operating systems, such as Windows and macOS.

2. Affinity Designer: Affinity Designer is a powerful vector graphic design tool that offers seamless integration with raster graphics. It works with Windows, macOS, and iPad.

3. Corel Painter: Corel Painter offers a vast array of realistic brushes and textures, making it a favorite among traditional artists transitioning to digital media. It is available on Windows and macOS.


Procreate has firmly established itself as a leading digital art application, offering a rich set of features, high performance, and an affordable price point. Its intuitive interface and extensive brush library make it a favorite among both beginners and professionals. However, its exclusivity to the iPad and lack of vector support might be limiting for some users. Exploring alternatives like Adobe Photoshop, Affinity Designer, and Clip Studio Paint can provide artists with the flexibility and tools they need to create stunning digital artwork.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

No, Procreate is exclusively available for iPad. There is no official version for other platforms such as Android or Windows.

Yes, Procreate can be used offline. All features and tools are available without needing an internet connection.

No, Procreate does not support vector graphics. It is primarily a raster-based application, which might not be suitable for projects requiring scalable artwork.

Procreate does not offer a trial version. There are no recurring membership costs, however, since this is a one-time purchase software.

Yes, Procreate allows users to import custom brushes created by other artists. This feature gives your toolset more adaptability and personalization.

As you create an artwork, Procreate automatically captures a time-lapse of it. You can export this video through the Actions menu under the Video tab, selecting "Export Time-lapse Video."


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