Top 10 Tools for Digital Illustrators in 2023

tools for digital illustrators

Digital illustration has become an integral part of the modern creative landscape. With the rapid advancement of technology, illustrators now have a plethora of tools at their disposal to bring their visions to life. Whether you’re a seasoned professional or just starting out, having the right tools can make all the difference in your work. Here are the top 10 tools for digital illustrators in 2023:

Adobe Photoshop

For many, the name Adobe Photoshop is synonymous with digital art and design. Over the years, it has established itself as the go-to software for professionals and hobbyists alike. Its strength lies not just in photo editing, for which it was originally designed, but also in its capabilities to produce stunning digital artwork and intricate graphic designs. 

The software’s layering tool is particularly noteworthy, allowing artists to organize, manipulate, and blend different elements seamlessly. Additionally, its vast array of brushes and paint tools ensures that artists can mimic almost any style or technique they desire. Given its comprehensive features and unmatched versatility, it’s no wonder that Adobe Photoshop remains an industry favorite.


Tailored specifically for the Apple ecosystem, Procreate has carved a niche for itself among digital artists. Available exclusively on iPads and iPhones, this powerful drawing tool offers an intuitive and natural drawing experience. 

One of its standout features is its support for hundreds of layers, allowing for complex compositions and detailed artworks. Artists also have access to masks, blend modes, and a vast collection of over 130 customizable brushes, ensuring they have all the tools they need to bring their visions to life. 

Corel Painter

Corel Painter is a testament to the fusion of traditional and digital art tools for digital illustrators. This software is specially designed to emulate various art mediums digitally. Whether you’re looking to recreate the texture of oil paints, the fluidity of watercolors, or the boldness of acrylics, 

Corel Painter has the tools to make it happen. It bridges the gap between traditional and digital, allowing artists to enjoy the best of both worlds.

Adobe Fresco

A relatively newer entrant in the digital art space, Adobe Fresco caters to both iOS and Windows users. Designed with modern artists in mind, it combines raster, vector, and live brushes in one app, making it a versatile choice for various art projects. Its intuitive interface and responsive tools have quickly made it a favorite among the digital art community.

Adobe Illustrator

When it comes to vector graphics, Adobe Illustrator is the undisputed champion. Renowned for its precision and scalability, it’s the preferred choice for creating logos, icons, drawings, and other illustrations that require sharp lines and shapes. Its pen tool, shape tools, and pathfinder are just a few features that make it indispensable for those working with vector graphics.

Affinity Photo

In the realm of budget-friendly digital art software, Affinity Photo stands out. Without compromising on quality or features, it offers a robust platform for photo editing and digital painting. Its user-friendly interface, coupled with a one-time purchase model, makes it an attractive alternative to subscription-based software.

Rebelle 4

Rebelle 4 is all about bringing the authenticity of traditional painting to the digital canvas. It excels in replicating painting techniques, from wet-on-wet to dry brush strokes. Artists can achieve realistic watercolor and acrylic effects, making their digital art pieces feel like they were crafted on a physical canvas.


For those on a tight budget or just dipping their toes into the world of digital art, Krita is a godsend. This free software, compatible with drawing pads, offers a range of features that rival even some paid software. Its open-source nature means that it’s continually evolving, with a community of users contributing to its growth and improvement.


CorelDRAW is another formidable player in the vector graphics arena. Often seen as a more affordable alternative to Adobe Illustrator, it provides a comprehensive suite of tools for digital illustrators. Its intuitive interface and powerful features make it a popular choice for vector art and design.


The GNU Image Manipulation Program, or GIMP, has long been hailed as the best free alternative to Photoshop. As an open-source software, it’s continually updated and improved by a community of developers. GIMP offers a wide range of tools for photo editing, graphic design, and digital art, making it a versatile choice for artists of all levels.

Wrapping Up

The tools you choose as a digital illustrator can significantly impact your work’s quality and efficiency. While the above list provides a comprehensive overview of the top tools in 2023, it’s essential to select those that align with your specific needs, style, and budget. Whether you’re creating detailed illustrations, web design, concept art, or simple sketches, there’s a tool out there to help you achieve your artistic vision.