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Adobe Photoshop vs Affinity Designer (best drawing software for mac)

Ease of use
Brushes and tools
Layer options
Vector support
Photo editing
Text tools
3D capabilities
Plugins and extensions
Price point
Support and help resources
Adobe Photoshop monetizes through a monthly subscription plan. The cost begins at $20.99 per month.
Affinity Designer has no subscription model. Users pay a one-time fee of $49.99.

🎨 Adobe Photoshop is the industry standard with enormous capabilities, but has a steep learning curve and requires a monthly subscription. 💻⏲💰

🖌 Affinity Designer is a powerful, less expensive alternative to Photoshop with one-time payment and no subscription. 👛💡

Adobe Photoshop Pros & Cons

Top Pros
  • Extensive toolkit 🛠

  • Advanced photo editing capabilities 📸

  • Supports 3D designs 🏘

  • Wide array of plugins and extensions 🔌

  • Industry standard for digital art 🎭

Affinity Designer Pros & Cons

Top Pros
  • Intuitive interface 💻

  • Affordable with one-time fee 💵

  • Excellent vector support ✔️

  • Cross-platform support 🌐

  • No subscription required 🏷

  • Solid tools for graphic design ✏️

Top Cons
  • Steep learning curve 🧗‍♀️

  • Expensive monthly subscription 💸

  • Can be overkill for simple tasks 🎯

  • Heavy software 💽

  • Requires powerful computer for smooth run 🔥

  • Complicated text tools 🤔

Top Cons
  • Lacks advanced photo editing 📷

  • Limited plugin support 🔌

  • No 3D capabilities 🏢

  • Less brush options 🖌

  • Some tools can be unintuitive 🤷‍♀️

Other best drawing software for mac


✒️ Sketch is excellent for vector graphics and UI design, but not as comprehensive for photo editing. 💼🔍


🖼 Corel Painter excels in realistic painting effects, although the interface may feel outdated. 🎭🕰


📱Procreate, exclusive for iPads, offers an amazing drawing experience with a wide palette of brushes. Perfect for digital artists on the go. 🖍🌈🚀


The top drawing programs for Mac include Adobe Photoshop, Affinity Designer, Procreate, Sketch, and Corel Painter. These tools offer a broad range of features and are highly recommended for professionals and hobbyists alike.

Yes, Adobe Photoshop is entirely compatible with Mac OS. Users can easily download and install it from the Adobe website.

Affinity Designer is a graphic design and illustration tool used for creating artwork, icons, branding, UI designs, print projects, and more. It’s a versatile program known for its vector capabilities.

Both Adobe Photoshop and Affinity Designer offer advanced features for graphic design. However, Photoshop is traditionally more favored for photo manipulation and Affinity Designer for vector graphics. The choice primarily depends on the specific needs and preferences of the user.

Adobe Photoshop is not free. It requires a monthly subscription as part of Adobe’s Creative Cloud package. However, Adobe does offer a free trial period for new users.

Yes, there are free alternatives to Adobe Photoshop for Mac such as GIMP and Krita which offer robust image editing features.

Affinity Designer supports a wide array of file formats including JPEG, PNG, GIF, TIFF, PDF, SVG, EPS, as well as Adobe’s PSD and AI.

Affinity Designer features an intuitive interface that is quite beginner-friendly. Additionally, the Affinity website offers numerous tutorials and resources to help users get started.

Yes, Adobe Photoshop can definitely be used for drawing on a Mac. It offers a multitude of brushes and tools that make it a sought-after choice for digital artists.

Affinity Designer stands out due to its one-time purchase pricing model which is more affordable long term than Photoshop’s subscription-based model. Moreover, Affinity Designer excels in vector design, another area where some users find it preferable over Photoshop.

Yes, Affinity Designer provides a fully optimized version for the iPad, offering the same level of capabilities as the desktop version.

Yes. Both Adobe Photoshop and Affinity Designer can work with PSD files. This allows users to create a design in one platform and edit it in the other.

While Adobe Photoshop can certainly be used to create logos, it’s primarily a raster-based program which means it might not deliver the scalability that vector-based programs like Illustrator or Affinity Designer can.

There are various resources that can help improve your Affinity Designer skills. Online platforms like Udemy and Skillshare offer in-depth courses, while Affinity’s own website has numerous tutorials and guides.

Adobe Photoshop on Mac provides features like advanced layer styles, 3D artwork creation, and an extensive range of professional photography tools. Moreover, with Adobe Creative Cloud, you can easily integrate Photoshop with other Adobe apps.

Affinity Designer doesn’t natively support third-party plugins. However, it does support Photoshop plugins, allowing users to expand their workspace with added functionality.

To run Adobe Photoshop on Mac, you’ll need macOS version 10.14 (Mojave) or later, an Intel or Apple Silicon processor, at least 8 GB of memory (16 GB recommended), and a minimum of 4 GB of GPU VRAM.

Most leading drawing tablets, such as those from Wacom, Huion, and XP-Pen, are compatible with Affinity Designer. It’s best to check the specific model’s compatibility on the manufacturer’s website.

Both Adobe Photoshop and Affinity Designer offer solid customer support. Adobe provides extensive online resources, community help forums, and direct assistance. Meanwhile, Affinity Designer also has a helpful online community, numerous tutorials, and responsive email support.

Yes, Affinity Designer offers a 10-day free trial for new users. You can download it from the Affinity Designer website.

Among the top drawing software available for Mac, users can consider Adobe Photoshop, Affinity Designer, CorelDraw, SketchUp, and Procreate for iPad with MacOS support. Each offers unique capabilities that cater to different design needs.

Adobe Photoshop stands out for its robust set of features, which includes advanced photo editing tools, superior brush control, 3D editing and design capabilities, and text and vector editing tools. It’s also highly customizable, allowing creatives to tailor their workflow.

Affinity Designer is often praised for its versatility, delivering a unique combination of vector and raster editing environments in one app. Its intuitive interface, low-cost subscription model and robust set of creative tools and grids make it a competitive alternative to other mainstream options.

Yes, Adobe Photoshop offers advanced illustration tools that are frequently used by professional artists and designers. These tools, coupled with its extensive library of brushes, make it a flexible platform for digital art creation. However, the software’s complexity may require a steep learning curve for beginners.

Affinity Designer supports a broad range of file formats, including AI, PDF, SVG, Photoshop PSD, JPEG, PNG, TIFF, EPS, and Affinity’s own file formats (AFDESIGN, AFPHOTO, AFPUB). This offers users the flexibility to work and collaborate across various platforms.

Yes, Adobe Photoshop fully supports various tablet inputs, including the Apple Pencil. The software features excellent pressure sensitivity and tilt functionality, making it compatible with professional drawing tablets and enhancing the artist’s drawing experience.

Affinity Designer provides a robust iPad version that fully supports touch and Apple Pencil inputs, offering a similar feature set to the desktop version. This allows designers to draw and edit on the go, making it a portable and versatile design solution.

Yes, Adobe Photoshop integrates with Adobe’s Creative Cloud, allowing users to store, access, and manage their files online, ensuring that their work is backed up and can be accessed from any computer with Photoshop installed.

Affinity Designer is widely used across industries that require strong graphic design capabilities, including marketing and advertising, fashion design, gaming, web development, and publishing. Its user-friendly interface and versatility make it a suitable choice for both professional designers and hobbyists.

To run Adobe Photoshop, a Mac needs to be running at least MacOS 10.14 (Mojave) and have at least 8GB of RAM (16GB recommended). For the disk, it should have a free space of at least 4GB, but Adobe recommends 10GB for optimal performance.

Affinity Designer’s vector editing feature allows for the creation and manipulation of vector-based graphics, which are infinitely scalable with no loss of quality. This feature provides advanced control of curves, fills, gradients, layer effects, and blending modes, making it an ideal tool for logo and icon design.

While Adobe Photoshop is not a dedicated video editing or animation software, it does offer basic tools for video editing and animating graphics. Motion designers often use Photoshop to create frame-by-frame animations, animated GIFs, or simple video projects. To create more complex video or animation projects, Adobe recommends using their specialized software like Premier Pro or After Effects.

Yes, the developers behind Affinity Designer offer a free trial version of the software from their official website. The trial lasts for 10 days, giving potential buyers a chance to evaluate its features before purchasing.

Adobe Photoshop cost for Mac users depends on the subscription plan chosen. On a monthly plan, it costs $31.49 per month. However, it can be purchased as a part of the Creative Cloud package, which includes more than 20 creative apps, for $52.99 per month.

While Affinity Designer comes equipped with a range of powerful tools suitable for vector and raster graphic design, it doesn’t include native 3D modeling capabilities. Hobbyists and professionals who require 3D modeling and rendering might need to use specialized 3D graphic software.

Yes, Adobe offers Photoshop Express for mobile devices, a simplified version of Photoshop that allows for editing and sharing of photos from mobile devices. Adobe Photoshop for iPad offers a more feature-rich, tablet-friendly version of Photoshop.

Yes, Affinity Designer does support custom brushes and presets. Designers can create their own custom brushes or import brushes from others. These features enable artists to customize and streamline their workflow to suit their specific design needs.

Adobe offers a 14-day cancellation period during which users can receive a full refund for their Photoshop subscription. This policy applies to all Creative Cloud services, allowing users to test their tools risk-free.

Affinity Designer is designed with usability in mind, but as with any graphic design software, there is a learning curve. Fortunately, Affinity offers official video tutorials and has an active community of users who can provide assistance, making the learning process easier.

Yes, Adobe offers a substantial student discount on their Photoshop software. Students can access a package of all Adobe’s Creative Cloud apps, including Photoshop, for a significantly reduced monthly fee.