10+ best painting apps for Windows 10 [Drawing, Sketching]

Ivan Jenic
by Ivan Jenic
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  • Beginner or pro, you still need a great set of drawing apps for PC, that provide various painting modes and HDR support.
  • Upgrade you pictures by adding intricate features like 3D objects, or just make some basic editing.
  • Check our guide if you want a free app that can help you restore old pictures, and more.
  • Create wonderful visuals with features like like the calligraphy pen, and refine the result with a great filter.
Painting apps for Windows 10
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With PC displays increasingly becoming pixel-rich, it is only natural for companies to also respond with more advanced painting software to make the best of the stunning displays that today’s PCs boast of.

Gone are the days when you could scribble heavily pixelated shapes and figures with MS Paint.

In contrast, today’s painting apps provide almost the same feel as the art form in real life. What’s more, most of them are free and compatible with Windows 10.

Read on to find out the best drawing apps for Windows 10 PCs and pick the one that suits your work needs.


What are the best drawing apps for PC to exercise your talent?

Adobe Photoshop CC (recommended)

One of the most popular and reliable digital painting software available right now is Adobe Photoshop CC. It is widely used by artists, designers, and photographers for good reasons. 

Although in the last couple of years its supremacy as the best painting app has been challenged, the tide has shifted with the 2020 update.

This massive update has brought some long-awaited features like the new re-imagined filters powered by Adobe Sensei.

Photoshop should not only be viewed as a tool that makes you skinnier or brushes up the acne. Besides photo editing, it has a large usage in the creation of banners, logos, icons, apparel and of course painting.

You can easily switch to a painting mode and adjust the brushes, pencils, and pens for your liking.

If you are passionate about abstract art, you will love the Paint Symmetry feature that lets you duplicate patterns across a line.

Another important reason to consider it is the ability to download thousands of pre-made brushes created by experienced artists. You can also create your own patterns and publish them.

Not to mention that it is fully compatible with XP-Pen which gained a lot of popularity lately.

Some of the features that make Adobe Photoshop a perfect digital painting software:

Adobe Photoshop CC

Adobe Photoshop CC

Adobe Photoshop CC is the best digital canvas that you can build your art on, especially with the new version, so try it out!
Free trialVisit website

inPixio Photo Studio Pro 11

inPixio Photo Studio Pro 11 is the software you need if you want to enhance your visuals and add the refine touch of a true professional. You can customize pictures by cropping or changing the background thanks to the Cutter function.

Enhance your photos by removing imperfections with the Erase feature, or make old photographs look like new and restore them to their actual aesthetic value.

Remove unnecessary objects and smooth the edges of your photos in order to give them a softer look.

Take your favorite photos and create a wonderful montage in just a few easy steps and add a dash of extra excitement by using one of the awesome backgrounds.

Photo Studio Pro 11

Photo Studio Pro 11

Make your pictures stand out, with this editing tool that helps you enhance details and remove imperfections.

Autodesk Sketchbook

First things first, the app isn’t exactly free though there always is a free version available which again is comprehensive enough to warrant its inclusion in this list.

The Autodesk Sketchbook app can also be seen as a nice replacement for MS Paint though perhaps somewhat more advanced.

There are a whole lot of brushes and tools along with so much more to help you get started right away in the free version itself.

And if you find it addictive enough, there is always the pro version that you can subscribe to.

Autodesk Sketchbook

Autodesk Sketchbook

Sketchbook is more than its name suggests. It can be just a sketchbook or a true digital canvas, so take a closer look!

Paint.net

Paint.net can easily be considered as a stripped down version of Photoshop, one that is a lot user-friendly but still can do a great job with any photos.

That said, there is no stopping you from doodling away anything you like while you can also work wonders on any image that you wish to work on.

There is the usual assortment of paint brushes that are common to nearly all painting apps.

Get Paint.net


Microsoft Paint 3D

This formed part of the Windows 10 Creator’s Update and is billed as the modern-day version of the ubiquitous MS Paint.

While Paint has since survived and will continue to be available via Microsoft Store, it is Paint 3D that will henceforth be the official coloring app on all Windows 10 PC now.

As for the app itself, there are new brushes and tools to choose from for drawing on the display.

However, you get the real taste once you tap on the 3D Object tab that lets you introduce 3D objects and animals on to your canvas or turn your own creations into 3D.

Then there are other options to further spice up your creation in the form of lighting effects or apply different finishes such as matte, polished metal, gloss and so on.

Also, of course, you can paint the surface the way you wish to. On the whole, a fun app to while away your time while also getting along with some serious painting job as well when needed.

Get Microsoft Paint 3D


Krita

Krita is as good as it can get for a serious painting app on your PC, and much of that owes to its origins given that it has been designed by artists in the first place.

The app can be perfect for any kind of drawing though it seems to be better tuned for comics and manga.

Also, the artistic lineage is evident in almost every aspect of the Krita app, be it its customizable brushes with the option to save the bespoke brushes for later use or the plethora of pens and fills that you have at your disposal.

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Then there are also panel templates, halftone filters to aid in your artistic endeavors. Mention must also be made of the intuitive method of launching the color palette or other tools.

For this, you only got to do a simple right-click anywhere on the app and there will be a selection wheel offering various tools and color options.

Besides, the app also offers a variety of masks and layers as well, including HDR support for exceptional quality pictures. This is one of the best apps to have for serious painting, one that is completely free as well.

Get Krita

Artweaver

Artweaver can be great for both serious paintings and a fun app for kids. It has a great collection of pens that range from cone brushes, airbrush, and calligraphy pens, while there also are a range of patterns to choose from.

The app is also layer based, which means you can let loose your creativity is stages with the option to go back and change anything that you wish to without hampering the entire artwork.

The app also allows the creation of even complex images very effortlessly, so be sure to try it out.

Get Artweaver

Microsoft Fresh Paint

Microsoft Fresh Paint is another free painting app from Microsoft that offers the closest feel you can have of a pen or brush touching real paper.

In fact, so life like the app is that the colors also tend to splatter when you dip your brush into the palette.

You have the option to wash the brush before you start using another color, or directly smear the brush with a different color if you intend to make a color blend, just as you would have done in the real life.

In fact, skeuomorphism happens to be the keyword with the app as the canvas also tends to take some time to dry, offering you to smear any other color while it is still wet and so on.

Overall, this is a nice app for the experienced artists or for unveiling the artist in just about anybody.

Get Microsoft Fresh Paint


MyPaint

MyPaint is another great painting app, but it is also one that is the unique in its own way.

And much of it owes to the app‘s Linux origins. That also makes it befitting of only artists or those who don’t mind picking up new skills just to use the app.

That having been said, there is certainly the assortment of brushes to add color to your creations. Then there are layers, while a notepad lets you create sketches.

Also, with the app being open source, other artists have more varied brush packages on offer which you can download and install in your application.

Lastly, for those who’d like to know, the credit for the creation of the MyPaint app goes to artist Martin Renold.

He went out to develop something more convincing painting solution to suit his needs, something that he wasn’t getting with the other painting apps available then.

Get MyPaint

Zen: Coloring Book For Adults

Zen: Coloring Book For Adults is a great app, more to pass the time than anything else.

This coloring book app is nevertheless designed to breathe new life into your creativity with a new design every time.

As you might have guessed it already, there would be a series of intricate designs presented to you.

All that you need to do is let loose your creative instincts in filling up the patterns with the colors of your choice. Needless to say, the results can be stunning if done with care and passion.

Get Zen: Coloring Book For Adults

Sketchable

Sketchable is a great app to put your stylus to the best use.

The free version will let you have everything to put your artistic creativity to good use though, for a few other niceties like layer support for the more serious artists, you need to go for in-app purchases.

The app can also be a great asset for design students or officials who can get along with their creative work with the Sketchable app with utmost ease.

Get Sketchable


These are our top recommendations of the best drawing apps for PC, whether you choose a free tool or decide to go for a more complex set of features, you’ll e delighted with the result.

We’d like to hear more from you on this subject so drop us a comment in the section below.


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The pictures are in the wrong order. The order they appear in is: photoshop, gimp(not even in the list), sketchable, Krita, art weaver, fresh paint, my paint, zen coloring book, paint.net, Autodesk sketchbook. There isn’t a picture for Microsoft paint 3d.