An Overview of Procreate: Digital Art Made Easy

Posted on September 5, 2023 | Updated on September 5, 2023

Procreate is one of those digital illustration apps that has been on the market for a while. While the digital illustration app isn’t anything new, it has gained popularity among artists of all skill levels. Those who love to sketch new artwork daily find Procreate handy. They can easily draw, edit and share their masterpieces while on the go. 

Procreate makes digital art fun and easy, but those curious about this tool should know there’s lots to explore. Yet, once they learn more about the app, they’ll have a clearer idea of whether it’s the perfect tool for them.

What Is Procreate?

Procreate is a drawing and painting app specifically designed for the iPad. With an easy-to-use interface, Procreate makes it simple for artists to work on their creations. However, this powerful app has numerous features which can overwhelm first-time users.

Nevertheless, Procreate lets you turn your iPad into a digital canvas. Start a new page and use an Apple pencil to create anything that comes to mind. The app offers a large selection of tools to give artists the flexibility to craft everything from detailed illustrations to casual doodles.

It even provides all the necessary tools to bring an artistic vision to life. So, for someone ready to start creating illustrations, the app is a great place to start.

Why Do Users Love Procreate?

What’s so special about Procreate? The drawing app itself makes digital art creation fun and easy. Any level of artist with an iPad and Apple pencil can open the app and get started creating any artwork they desire. 

The drawing app provides various brushes, effects and tools comparable to desktop software. While it’s not as sophisticated as certain tools like Adobe Illustrator, it still does whatever you need regarding its functionality. 

Many users find the tool fun to play around with, as they can customize the features to make the effects turn out the way they need them. Plus, the app gives you the same effect a person feels when drawing on paper. Therefore, users still get some similarities to drawing with a pencil and paper — the only difference is they can keep everything saved on the app. 

Instead of lugging a notebook and art supplies around, Procreate makes it simple to take and use while traveling.

Additionally, there is an entire community of loyal users. Once someone downloads the app and starts using it, they may find it requires a slight learning curve. However, they may find it easy to get started with all the resources available online. They can easily find inspiration or tutorials on YouTube to create something specific. 

The Pros and Cons of Procreate

Procreate is a wonderful tool to start using for projects in a professional and personal manner. However, its limitations may keep designers from choosing this as their main tool.


  • Affordable: It has a low one-time purchase, making it valuable compared to other art software — especially for those requiring a subscription. 
  • Tons of features: With the digital art app being feature-packed, designers can create works of art in their style with the range of available tools.
  • Portable: There’s no need to waste paper or sit still at your desktop computer. Procreate is like a mini art studio designers can take with them wherever they go.
  • Save in various file formats: The app lets you save your work in PNG, PDF, JPEG and PSD. Therefore, you can start your artwork in the app, then download it to use in a different software — such as Adobe Photoshop — to edit your artwork.
  • Smooth creation: The app’s similar feeling to drawing on paper allows artists to work on their projects seamlessly. In other words, the Apple pencil glides across the screen without lag concerns. Plus, they can zoom in and out or rotate their drawing instantaneously.


  • Limited to Apple users: Android users must consider other options, as the app is only available in the iOS store.
  • Lacks vectors: Achieving the same texture artists get with vectors in Illustrator and Photoshop can take time and effort. Still, this is a great way to enhance your hand-drawing.
  • Learning curve: The platform is comprehensive, so many may only find the greatest of functions by happenstance. Therefore, learning about all the awesome features requires research to make the most use.
  • File saving restrictions: Procreate doesn’t back up works of art on the iCloud. Once an artist uses up all the space on their iPad, that’s it unless they go to back up their files on the iCloud manually.

What Are the Key Features?

Procreate has many features for artists to discover. Here are the top items designers find they love when using the drawing app.


A feature called Quickshape makes digital art creation faster. Many artists ensure they take the time to draw their lines and shapes to make them perfect. Yet, trying to do this on their own can be a challenging task. 

That’s where Quickshape can help. Artists can make precise geometric shapes with this feature. By drawing a figure roughly and holding it at the end, it quickly snaps into a perfect form, no matter the object. 

Now, designers can aim for higher accuracy and ensure a seamless mix of various shapes in their artwork.


The layers feature empowers artists to build, edit and organize different artwork elements separately. It’s like stacking sheets of transparent paper — each layer holds distinct parts of a drawing. This enables easier editing, blending and arranging without disturbing other elements.

For artists, this feature means greater flexibility and control over their details. Plus, they have the freedom to experiment without commitment.


ColorDrop is a time-saver — it allows artists to fill an area with color by dragging the desired shade from the color palette to the canvas. This feature eliminates the need to color in large spaces manually, ensuring consistent shading and enhancing workflow efficiency.

This tool may speed up the coloring process for artists, but it also guarantees precision, giving them more polished, quality outputs.


AnimationAssist turns itself into an animator’s playground. It lets designers create frame-by-frame pieces easily. Each layer or group becomes a frame, enabling straightforward sequencing and playback.

This tool opens the door to storytelling, allowing artists to bring their illustrations to life without specialized animation software. For creatives, AnimationAssist is a step towards merging status art with movement.

Procreate vs. Other Drawing Apps

Procreate is often more favorable because of the way it’s designed. Its intuitiveness allows artists to make their drawings directly on an iPad. Plus, its large toolset gives artists the closely real experience they crave with a canvas.

However, other drawing apps are comparable to the drawing app. For instance, SketchBook has the advantage of cross-platform support, with tools suitable for beginners and professionals. It’s widely accessible but doesn’t match Procreate’s in-depth feature set tailored for the iPad. 

Figma is another design software. While artists use it primarily for UI/UX design, it does support freehand drawing. Additionally, it’s a collaborative design tool that allows designers to create interactive prototypes. However, it doesn’t compare to Procreate regarding artwork creation.

Overall, Procreate is excellent for providing a comprehensive, tablet-specific drawing experience. Yet, other tools may better suit different needs.

Should You Choose Procreate?

Deciding on Procreate depends on your artistic needs. If a drawing experience tailored for an iPad is what you seek, then Procreate is your best bet. However, looking into other options is always good, as they may be a better fit. Plus, there’s no trial to let you test out Procreate to see if you like it. Consider watching tutorials to learn more about how Procreate works and what it takes to get started. 

About The Author

Related Posts