7 Powerful Apps for Designers
- Chris Stevens
- March 25, 2013
There is an app for everything, they say, and this is definitely the case when it comes to productivity tools for creative professionals. Designers especially have been treated to a fast growing smorgasbord of options “designed” to help with everything from organizing ideas to improving the overall workflow. The following seven apps are some of the tastiest morsels on what has become a massive menu.
Adobe Photoshop, in some form or another, is the tool many designers use to make the visual magic happen. But this is in the desktop environment. Adobe is hoping its software can make a similar impact in the mobile arena. Adobe Photoshop Express delivers a bundles of simple, yet powerful tools in a package that makes it easy to touch up and enhance photos on the go. Users already familiar with the Photoshop interface will get up and running quickly with this one.
Created by software maker FiftyThree, Paper is quickly become on of the hottest apps on the design scene. This interesting tool supplies features that allow users to draw, sketch, outline, write, and color right on their device. There is also a mixing feature for blending colors and creating custom palettes. The combination of a built-in ink engine, retina resolution, and superb graphics enables this colorful app to shine brightly for creative doodling.
Mockups are critical for freelance designers. In some cases, the ability to get them done in a timely manner can be the difference between securing and losing gigs. iMockups gives you the power to create those mockups wherever you are. This iPad app offers a beautiful user interface that meshes nicely with the device’s visually pleasing display real estate. iMockups is quickly proving its worth as a handy companion for web design and mobile app development projects alike.
Busy designers can benefit greatly from a tool like TeuxDeux. What many pros appreciate about this app is how it keeps things simple and more importantly, gets the simple things right. TeuxDeux lets you create and manage to-do lists in a way that, thanks to a beautiful interface, is both easy and elegant. You may feel it is a breath of fresh air in comparison to other to-do apps that cram too much functionality at the sack of usability.
Fonts can make all the difference in any design project that includes a shred of text. WhatTheFont helps designers expand their own personal font landscape. With this app, you can snap a picture of attractive fonts you might want to use in your project while out and about, and use its database to find them. You can also use fonts from any images that are saved in your device. Leveraging MyFonts’ world renowned identification service, WhatTheFont delivers font matches quickly, with impressive accuracy to boot.
Gusto is an app made to simplify web projects executed on the trendy iPad. Strapped with a built-in code editor and robust FTP support, professionals have a powerful development tool at their disposal. The app recognizes all major web languages, most recently, CSS 3, so it can be used in tackling simple and complex projects alike. While FTP support is included, files can also be directly uploaded to Dropbox. From local previews to online editing and publishing, Gusto packs a heck of punch for serious developers and designers.
While Instagram isn’t a design tool per se, it can be very useful weapon in a designer’s arsenal. It’s the perfect tool to use to share samples, progress updates, and other imagery related to your work. What’s great about Instagram is that it has its own community. That community, combined with the sharing of visual content in your other social channels can be huge for visibility, branding, and promotional efforts.
Artistic professionals know that inspiration can strike at any time. It could be while sitting in the airport, or stuck in the lunchroom. In a meeting, or on the beach taking a break from the business grind. Whenever time comes and wherever you are, it’s probably safe to assume that your trusty mobile sidekick isn’t too far away. These apps can help you stay creatively sharp and effective at all times.
Everyone has their favorites, so tell it: what are your favorite designer-friendly apps?
Chris Stevens is a best practices activist and advocate for a leading provider of event marketing services.
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