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: Alternative to Adobe Illustrator Can you recommend a good alternative to Adobe Illustrator? I am learning vector based graphic design, but I am not ready to make such a large investment as


Posted in: #AdobeIllustrator #SoftwareRecommendation #Vector

Can you recommend a good alternative to Adobe Illustrator?

I am learning vector based graphic design, but I am not ready to make such a large investment as to purchase a copy of Adobe Illustrator. Also, Illustrator might be a little more power than I need at the moment. I am using a Macintosh.

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I'll add Boxy SVG to the list since no one else has...

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These are some examples of packages to use


Vectr (Including an online version)




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Great topic..

As you have already read from many of the followers regarding the alternatives. And these are only the best ones.

My suggestion would be to do a research to see which one you find better.
Every software whether its paid or open source have pros and cons.

I am professional vector artist and have worked with many alternatives and have ultimately landed with one final. With my experience I will say to stick with one. Do not over search too many.

Software is just a tool you use, its your designing and creativity that matters the most. I have found that some open source software gives you the same results as a paid one. But yes paid software have many more features.

I would still recommend with Adobe Illustrator(my fav.). But for alternative I would say Mac Affinity seems to be promising.

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Gravit is another open source alternative, originally developed as a freehand alternative, that can be used both online and as a desktop app.

And if you're on a mac, definitely check out Affinity Designer, it is by far the best alternative I've seen- even if it's just been released.

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I've just come across a fairly basic online vector editor. Definitely a handy web app for creating basic vector work. I imagine it only works on more recent browsers.

Click the following links for a few different tools:

A basic online vector graphic editor

Get better with the Pen tool with a simple and fun game
Learn more about kerning with another game
Learn about shaping letters in typography with another game
Test your colour matching skills with another game

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I have never used it, but Sketch is a vector graphics program for Mac that is less expensive than Illustrator. We have a couple of questions pertaining to it tagged under sketch

Sketch is a designers’ dream toolbox. Specifically created for designers, it powers a beautiful interface and powerful tools. Tools every designer will appreciate. Making beautiful graphics isn’t challenging anymore. We set out to build a better app for graphic designers. Not to copy — rather to improve.


Simple but powerful interface, built for OS X Lion and Mountain Lion
Optimized for Retina and non-Retina displays
Powerful styling; multiple shadows, multiple fills, gradients, blending, blur, noise and more...
Flexible boolean operations to combine simple shapes into complex shapes
Artboards and Slices for exporting multiple images out of a single document
Automatic @2x export for Retina graphics
Unique Color (with RGB and HSB modes) and Font pickers
Beautiful native text rendering and text styles
Vector and pixel zoom; zoom in with infinite vector precision or see individual pixels
Multi-stop and radial gradients editing right in the canvas. Powerful WYSIWYG rendering.
Shared & Linked Layer Styles that automatically update each other
Powerful, easy-to-use Vector Tool Additionally, designers in the following areas will enjoy these features:

For Web and UI Designers

Copy CSS Styles to clipboard (including gradients!)
Slices: export areas on the canvas as images
960px grid, with support for more advanced grid options
Multiple pages support inside a single document

For Icon Designers

Artboards; each size is its own square
iOS Icon Templates
Pixel Grid
Pixel Effects, such as Gaussian and Motion Blur

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Inkscape is a good alternative, and if you want more complicated vector graphic, you could try Torapp guilloche designer, it is free and runs in Chrome 20 and above. No installation and plugin is needed.

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If you're comfortable with Ubuntu (either in VM or dual booting), I suggest Xara Xtreme for Linux:
It's really powerful, commercially tested, and is by far the best open source illustration software.

Here are some examples:

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You should try 'artbaord' It can do what adobe illustrator can do but for cheaper, plus it has loads of free to use clipart.

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From 5 best free vector graphics editor :

Inkscape : the reference from open-source. Should works on every platform
Karbon : Works on every platform but got less options than inkscape.
Aviary : Works online, you only need a browser. It's quite powerful but require flash player. So say good buy to iPad ;)
Draw Plus Starter Edition : As powerful as inkscape but quite... more beautiful interface (subjective, I know). Works only on windows.
Creative Docs : Microsoft product, so only on windows (requires .net 3). I don't know it...

If you need more ideas, try the list of vector graphics editor's wikipedia page ! Pretty complete with free and... less free software ;)

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Inkscape is the free alternative. I've never used Illustrator so I don't know how well its features compares to Illustrator (however others have done comparisons). It is quite feature rich and powerful nonetheless: check out some of the screenshots here. Also it might be just perfect for you since you say you are only learning and not looking for something that will overwhelm you with its plethora of features.

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Adobe Fireworks is a cheaper alternative to Illustrator, but it can still handle vector graphics. The downside is that you'll miss out on features like Live Trace, Live Paint, and a lot of the filters.

Also, you can try Inkscape for free. Both, however, are a different workflow than Illustrator. Also, if you're looking for a free Photoshop alternative, try GIMP.

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Check out Inkscape:
Inkscape is a free (and open-source) SVG vector graphics editing program. I've never used Illustrator, so I can't directly compare, but I've done all of my work in Inkscape and it is quite capable.

You might also want to check out Inkscape's tutorial for Illustrator users:

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You might try something like Corel Draw. It is significantly less money and very full-featured.

Still might be a bit more pricey than you're looking for, though.

If you were very recently a student be sure to check to see if you can get education-version prices. Or see if you can find an older version of software at a lower price since most of the core functionality will still be there.

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