What is the best free drawing program for PC?

Looking for an easy yet powerful way to sketch your ideas and save them as digital documents? You may want to checkout some of the best PC-based drawing programs. Some offer fine control over your line thicknesses, colors and other effects. Others focus on making the UI intuitive and easy to use so you can draw on the fly.

Best Free Drawing Programs for Windows

You can get freehand sketching software, and PC based painting tools. But this article will focus on some good options to design a document with text and shapes. Here are the bestfree and best paid Windows programs for DIY design:


A good choice for people who like to draw basic shapes and lines. You can think of Paint.net as Microsoft Paint for Windows 10 with a better UI and more features. It allows you to create images from scratch or edit existing images.

  • Free, lightweight software
  • Includes lots of brushes and effects
  • Can use layers for more complex drawings

TheDownload button will take you to the official website where you can download the installer file. The setup file is just less than 1MB in size. There is also a portable edition available if you don’t want to install the application.

Paint.NET editions – Free and Paid


Available as a Portable App

XnSketch is a handy, lightweight and portable application. If you ever need a simple and reliable tool for quick sketching then consider using XnSketch.

Here are some of the key features of XnSketch

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Add text toyour image

Undo / redo steps

Save your images as a JPG, PNG, TIFF, BMP or GIF image format

  • Available as a portable app so no installation needed.
  • Lightweight with just 6 MB size.


Simple but Versatile

AkelPad Screenshot

AkelPad is a simple text / shape editor. It is a perfect application if you want to quickly jot down your ideas or goals. You can add a description, notes and portray your thoughts using the shapes. Editing multiple lines is possible with AkelPad as it supports zooming in and zooming out based on your needs. Adding a pencil, brush or eraser toyour editing is quite simple and straight forward. AkelPad also supports adding horizontal and vertical arrows and different symbols to your pictures. Once you are done, you can export your image as PNG, JPEG, TIFF, BMP or TXT format. The resolution of the exported image is optimized automatically based on the selected file format. You can also import images to edit them usingAkelpad. A preview window is available when you select the import option. It focuses on the imported image instead of showing the entire Akelpad interface.

Akelpad Drawing Tool

A Quick Note on Askimet
A few days ago, Askimet, the anti-spam service used by WordPress, marked a comment on this article as spam. The comment had a valid name and email address. Plus, I checked it manually and did not find any spam content. But still it was marked as spam. Apparently, Askimet blocked the comment because omersayed.com looks like a known scammer website. It seems Askimet has trouble with .com domains as gmail.com and yahoo.com are also treated as known scammer websites. The interesting fact is that gmail.com and yahoo.com are used for official emailservices. Similarly, microsoft.com, cnn.com and other trusted websites are also treated as scammers by Akismet. I could not find any solution to this problem. Otherwise, I like the Askimet service as it rarely blocks a genuine comment.

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  • A developerdied in 2017. So, the future of the project is uncertain.
  • Krita

    A Powerful Advanced Drawing Application

    Krita Screenshot
    Krita is an advanced open source drawing software for professional and advanced users. The beta version of the development started with Krita 1.0 in 2004 and Krita 5.0 was released last year. This shows the stable development of this open source software. The user interface of Krita is pretty well polished and user-friendly. The brush engine and the filters of Krita are powerful when compared to the similar applications. The Linux version has gained more popularity as the development is more active with KDE. But, this does not mean you can’t use it on Windows operating system. The Windowsversion supports advanced features with nice toolbox and layer panel. It has few limitations such as no support for printing and no pressure sensitivity when using a tablet. But, you have other advanced tools on the toolbox such as cloning and alpha channel. You can also record the actions while drawing on the timeline. These recording can be played back later to review the process and make changes. Overall, if you plan to use this professional tool on Windows, then it is recommended to install Linux in parallel to use all the features.

    Support for Linux, Mac OS and Windows

    • Free and open source.
    • Has both paid and volunteer version. The pro version with extra features is paid and the developer provides 50% discount for first year.
    • Support forpaintbrush, pencil, airbrush, watercolor, graphic design, special effects, comic, animation and more.
    • Support for tablet.
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    Final Words

    1. If you want a quick, easy and free way for simple designs then go for Paint.net, Xnsketch or Asketch. (Also read – How to edit photos online for free)

    Paint.NET, Asketch or Krita?

    In most cases, a single program will suit your needs and most of your drawings will be simple and easy. So, you don’t have to pay or worry about learning curves and features you don’t need. But, ifyou are an artist and looking for advanced options then you can try Krita or upgrade to premium version of Adobe’s Photoshop. If you need more powerful tools for simple graphics, then consider Inkscape. Unfortunately, there are no great and free alternatives for Illustrator and InDesign. Also, you need a Mac computer to use Apple’s macOS-basedapplications. So, the best option is to stick with one tool or platform if you are using a good tool. But if you are migrating from another operating system, then you can use any of the tools mentioned in this guide.”

    Dannie Jarrod

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