Sketchable is a simple yet powerful program for quick sketching and drawing
Free or artists on the go it’s increasingly important to be able to capture ideas, draw quickly to show a client ideas, demonstrate a method, or annotate an image. For some, Sketchable has become the ideal application for achieving such tasks. It works well on both a Microsoft Surface Pro and the Wacom Companion, and it’s lightweight, easy to use, extremely fast, and responsive. It autosaves your work so you can pick up where you left off.
It’s not a painting program, though. You can create paintings on it, but if you expect Sketchable to replace Photoshop or Painter you’ll be disappointed. It’s geared to providing the artist with a quick, flexible, easy-touse yet powerful tool. And it succeeds.
Not only is it a great mobile application, but it feels as if it runs even quicker on a desktop computer (in our case, using Windows 8.1). Sketchable images are managed by arranging them into Journals, which are digital sketchbooks that you can create when you start the program. It’s easy to have several Journals going at any time for different projects.
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Individual images can be saved as PNG or PSD files – Sketchable is probably the first and only mobile application that provides layers. You can export PSD files directly into Photoshop running on the same machine for any additional work.
There are a few additions or changes that would make Sketchable almost perfect for an artist’s sketching needs: more layers and the ability to create paper textures are at the top of the list. But all and all, it’s a great program that’s easy to get familiar with, and with a well-thought-out interface.
The app is free, but most artists will want to make several in-app purchases (single tools from £1.27; bundle option is £7.68).
Here the painting interface shows available tools and colours along the bottom, the Color Picker and the desktop UI along the left edge.
The opening screen displaying the current Journals. The name of the active Journal is displayed at the top. The desktop UI is displayed below.