How to get started with Digital art- A Beginners Guide

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You wish to begin creating digital artwork as well, but you are unsure how to get started.

In this post, I will demonstrate how to begin working with digital art from the very beginning. 

The wonderful thing about creating digital art is that it does not need to be expensive; 

In fact, it is possible that you already have the majority of the equipment you need!

All of the items that I provide as examples in this post are ones that I have not personally tested myself. 

If you want to make an informed decision about a product, I strongly suggest reading some reviews on it first. 

Additionally, the prices listed are merely an estimate; if you want to know the precise cost of a product, click on the link provided.

You will see, towards the end of this post, what I believe to be the most effective method for getting started with digital art. 

Take from this essay what you require, and then make a choice that is well thought out and based on your own unique circumstances. 

Of course, that is just my viewpoint. Finally, if there are any questions that you have, be sure to ask them!

Questions to Ask Yourself Before Making Digital Art

Let’s address some of the most often-asked questions regarding digital art before moving on to your first creation.

Do I have to be able to draw?

Simply put, NO, you can begin your art learning path by working first online. But if you can draw, you’ve already got an advantage.

Should I get a laptop?

As I’ve said, you can start creating digital art on your phone if you want to, but if you want to make it your career, having a laptop and a graphic tablet (or an iPad) is highly advised.

Do I need a graphics tablet or an iPad?

No, you can create digital art with just your finger and your phone right now. However, if you want a larger workspace, an inexpensive graphic tablet or an iPad mini will do if the money is tight.

You can view our advice on the Best iPad for Drawing if you decide to look for an iPad.

Should I use a stylus?

This is a challenging query. While a stylus is strongly advised for beginners, especially if you want to switch to another interface like a graphic tablet where a stylus is the only tool you work with, it is possible to create art with your phone and your finger, and some people even manage to create amazing pieces with just that.

Do I have to purchase or learn Photoshop?

Also, Photoshop is more of a professional-oriented program; if you’re just getting started, I strongly advise using something else that is more user-friendly for beginners and is also less expensive or free. 

However, if you want to work professionally, you should definitely dive in and master every aspect of Photoshop.

How to get started with digital art equipment/Gadgets/Hardware

The Tech Stuff

When you want to get started creating digital paintings, the first thing you’ll need is some sort of hardware to work with. There are primarily four choices available to you:

A graphic tablet operates in a manner analogous to that of a mouse and must be connected to a computer, whether it is a desktop or a laptop. 

A specialized stylus, which may or may not require charging depending on the model, enables users of graphic tablets to create drawings directly on the tablet’s display. 

The screen may be seen reflected on the surface of the graphic tablet. 

Therefore, if you position your stylus in the top right corner of the surface, the cursor that appears on your screen will also be located in the top right corner of the screen.

They are affordable, with a quality graphic tablet being available for somewhere between fifty and one hundred dollars. 

Although Wacom graphic tablets are widely considered to be the standard in the business, if you are just starting out in the world of digital art, I would recommend obtaining a graphic tablet that is more affordable because they are still capable of doing an excellent job.


  • Option with less cost (depending on the brand you choose)
  • Does not require any type of battery or charging.
  • Due to the absence of a fragile screen, it is not particularly susceptible to being damaged.
  • It’s also a great alternative to using a mouse, which can help prevent repetitive stress injuries (RSI).


  • You will require either a desktop computer or a laptop.
  • It will take some time to get accustomed to since you have to keep your eyes on the screen while you draw and you are not allowed to glance at your hand.

The iPads & tablets

iPad Air- A Beginner-friendly tool for Artists

Apple 10.5-inch iPad Air (3rd Generation)

Pad Air brings more of our most powerful technologies to more people than ever. The A12 Bionic chip with Neural Engine.

A 10.5-inch Retina display with True Tone. Support for Apple Pencil and the Smart Keyboard. And at just one pound and 6.1 mm thin, carrying all that power is effortless.

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Wacom Intuos

Beginner friendly budget drawing tablet by Wacom
Wacom Intuos Graphics Drawing Tablet Wacom Intuos Graphics Drawing Tablet

Wacom has updated the design and features of the Intuos tablet several times since its release.

The current Wacom Intuos is the most powerful and attractive. It has a Bluetooth-enabled stylus with higher pressure sensitivity.

In comparison to using a mouse, working with a pen tablet is quicker and more efficient. Instead of making multiple slides, you can move your hand freely around the screen.

What's more, it facilitates more organic input in areas like drawing and photo editing.

Overall, it seems like a great graphics tablet for beginners looking for a cheap, reliable drawing tablet.

Tech Info: Can be used with iMac, PC, Chromebook & Android (small) with Software Included
RAM ‎2 MB |Wireless Type ‎802.11a
Number of USB 2.0 Ports-1 | Hardware Platform ‎PC, Linux, Mac
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Huion Inspiroy

HUION Inspiroy H1060P Graphics Drawing Tablet HUION Inspiroy H1060P Graphics Drawing Tablet

Graphic drawing tablet with 8192 Levels of Pressure Sensitivity - makes every stroke more fluid, the pressure sensitivity is four times higher than the majority of the homogenous products that have recently been introduced to the market.

16 Programmable Soft Keys - With 12 Programmable press Keys, which provide a number of various combinations of shortcuts, you are able to specify any function for them according to your operating habit and desire.

These shortcuts may be accessed quickly and easily.

Professional Working Area Configuration - The HUION art tablet comes with a working area that is 10 by 6.25 inches, which gives the user the most comfortable size to work with and ensures that there is no delay.

Create lines and projects that are as large as you can possibly conceive.

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Graphic Display

If you want to create digital art on your computer but don’t want to use a graphic tablet, then you might consider purchasing a graphic display instead. 

These are more costly than graphic tablets, but they allow you to paint and sketch directly on a computer screen. It’s possible that doing this will make more sense to you.


When compared to sketching on a graphic tablet, painting on a screen gives the impression of being more natural.
When compared to drawing on a graphic tablet, it requires far less practise.


You will require either a desktop computer or a laptop.
They have a higher price tag.
Low budget models could have some latency
You could encounter parallax/offset
It is necessary to charge the stylus (for some models)

Graphic Display

Best Big Screen tablet
Wacom Cintiq Pro 24 Creative Pen and Touch Display Wacom Cintiq Pro 24 Creative Pen and Touch Display

The Wacom Cintiq Pro is a stunning 23.6" touchscreen display that has a 4K resolution, allowing you to see every element of your project with precise accuracy.

  • With 99 percent Adobe RGB and 97 percent sRGB color performance and 1.07 billion colors, you get true-to-life color (10 bits color)
  • A Wacom Pro Pen 2 with tilt detection and 8,192 pressure sensitivity is included. Optical bonding eliminates parallax, simulating pen and paper precision and feel.
  • Multi-touch gestures, an on-screen keypad, radial menus, and a one-touch shortcut ExpressKey Remote are all featured.
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Stunning touchscreen panel measuring 23.6 inches with a resolution of 4K, allowing you to view every facet of your project with precise accuracy.

Colors that are true to life, with a colour performance of 99 percent Adobe RGB and 97 percent sRGB, and 1.07 billion different colours (10 bits color)

Included in the package is a Wacom Pro Pen 2 that has tilt detection and 8,192 different levels of pressure sensitivity. 

The elimination of parallax using optical bonding recreates the accuracy and the sense of handling a pen and paper.

Multitouch gestures, an on-screen keypad, radial menus, and the bundled ExpressKey Remote for one-touch access to frequently used functions are all featured.
Cables for USB-C, HDMI, and Mini/DisplayPort are provided with the Cintiq Pro 24 and may be used to connect it to a Mac running OS X 10.11 or later or a PC running Windows 7 or later.

Customers in the Americas can take advantage of this offer by registering their Cintiq Pros and receiving a free trial of Sculptron and Adobe Photoshop or Lightroom for a period of three months and two months, respectively.

Wacom DTK1660K0A Cintiq

Best Budget
Wacom DTK1660K0A Cintiq 16 Drawing Tablet with Screen Wacom DTK1660K0A Cintiq 16 Drawing Tablet with Screen

Wacom Cintiq 16 is a more inexpensive pen Display for students, hobbyists, and young creative professionals who wish to work directly on screen but don't need the Cintiq Pro ,C intiq's 15.6" 1920x1080 HD display delivers clarity to view every aspect of your work. The scratch-resistant Anti-Glare surface reduces reflections.

  • The cintiq's HD display shows brilliant colours.
  • 7M Bit, 72% NTSC). The battery-free pen charges while you work.
  • C Connect to your computer with the 3-in-1 (HDMI) cable and adjust using folding legs.

If you are looking for Bigger screen , Try Wacom C 22 or Or for a smaller display see the 13.3″ Wacom one( If you are on a Budget , you can go for the Renewed Tables on Amazon)

Tech Info: Connections: Micro USB, Bluetooth | OS: Windows or macOS|Usable & Active drawing area: 16.6 x 11.2in | Pen pressure sensitivity: 8,192 levels |
  • Cool large screen
  • No hassle and Easy to set up this Tablet
  • Wacom’s best pen ever (no charging needed)
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All in one Tablet

Everything you need to make your Digital art At Your Fingertips
Tablets like the iPad (Pro), Surface Pro, or Android tablets are examples of “all in one” tablets. You may find a variety of drawing applications on the market, some of them are completely free. 

If you already have a tablet, all you’ll need to get started creating digital art is a pen. Drawing with your finger is possible, but it’s not particularly natural or comfortable. 

Finally, all-in-one pills are convenient since they may be taken with you wherever you go. 

A train trip, a coffee break at a cafe, or even a nap at home are all good places to sketch!


Take it with you everywhere!
Drawing on a computer screen is a natural experience.
It is possible to utilize Procreate (if you have an iPad)


They’re not cheap
You’ll need to purchase a stylus separately.

Apple 10.2-inch iPad (7th Gen)

The most popular iPad features a larger 10.2-inch Retina display, support for Apple Pencil and the Smart Keyboard,and the amazingly capable iPadOS.

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Apple 10.5-inch iPad Air (3rd Generation)

Pad Air brings more of our most powerful technologies to more people than ever. The A12 Bionic chip with Neural Engine.

A 10.5-inch Retina display with True Tone. Support for Apple Pencil and the Smart Keyboard. And at just one pound and 6.1 mm thin, carrying all that power is effortless.

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Apple 12.9-inch iPad Pro (2020) (3rd gen)

This is the new iPad Pro. It has the world’s most advanced mobile display. It has pro cameras that can transform reality.

It’s so fast most PC laptops can’t catch up.

And you can use it with a touch, pencil, keyboard, and now mouse or trackpad.

Edge-to-edge Liquid Retina display on 12.9-inch iPad Pro.

The new Wide and Ultra Wide pro cameras and LiDAR Scanner enable new augmented reality (AR) app experiences.

A12Z Bionic chip for apps and games. Magic Keyboard with trackpad2 and Apple Pencil supported.

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Laptop for Digital Art beginners

In the realm of digital media, there is room for nearly everything, and that includes artistic expression. 

However, as a result of the many upgrades, new models, and new (insert any upgradable piece of technology here! ), this can also mean that an artist, whether they do it as a hobby or as a job, might not know exactly what to look for when selecting a computer for digital art.

There is a wide range of quality in the many types of computers. When you are aware of what to search for, it will be a lot simpler for you to find what it is that you are looking for. 

To assist you in making an informed decision when purchasing a new laptop, I have compiled a list of what I consider to be the best models currently available for use in digital art.

How to Decide Which Laptop Is Right for Your Digital Artwork

Finding the proper laptop for your artwork can make all the difference, regardless of whether you are an experienced digital artist or you are just starting out on your adventure. 

Several variables should be considered when choosing a laptop.
When searching for the most suitable laptop for your needs, there are a number of aspects that you should take into consideration.

Organizing the Space Within

Your computer’s internal storage can be thought of as its filing cabinet. When you have extra space, you can fit more things on whatever you’re storing. 

While it might be OK for some artists to retain only a select few things on their laptops or make use of external storage, others might choose to keep their whole portfolios in a single accessible location.


Processor The capacity of a computer to do multiple tasks simultaneously is directly proportional to the processing capability of its internal processor. This can also work in tandem with RAM, which is the topic I will go on to in a moment.


RAM, which stands for “random access memory,” is essentially the “short-term memory” of a computer. 

When you have more room to store things within reach, you will be able to complete more tasks in a shorter amount of time. 

When art programs use several, complex layers of rendering, or when you use multiple programs at once (multitasking), it might take a lot of processing power for the computer to keep up.

Screen: Dimensions, Resolution, and Classification

For creative people, the screen is the most important thing. Bigger screens are preferable for some individuals, and I have to say that I have to agree with them on this one. If you intend to use it as a medium for creating art, you will need as much usable area as you can get your hands on so that you can see what you are doing.

Best Laptop - overall
ASUS ZenBook Pro Duo ASUS ZenBook Pro Duo

The Asus ZenBook Pro Duo is a great piece of equipment if you are a creative professional who wants a powerful laptop with the versatility of a 2-in-1.

This laptop boasts a second touchscreen that is located below the screen for improved productivity. Professional artists & Architects who multitask using demanding graphics applications should go with this option.

Almost any artist will be happy using this laptop. This laptop can assist you in achieving your objectives, whether you're a photographer, graphic designer, or everything in between.

With a weight of just over five pounds, the ASUS Zenbook Pro Duo is still portable enough to be taken anywhere.

A palm rest and stylus are included with the laptop for added comfort and accuracy when creating. It is removable if the palm rest is not something you're interested in.

  • The main screen is beautiful
  • the second screen is actually useful
  • the performance is great
  • and the 0.2ms display is very responsive.
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Best Budget friendly
Lenovo Flex 5 Laptop Lenovo Flex 5 Laptop

This laptop is ideal for a novice digital artist who can't afford high-end processors. The processor and RAM can handle any art a newbie creates. Compared to others on the list, this one's price is unbeatable.

The Lenovo Flex 5 has two USB ports. This laptop has plugs for a mouse, phone, and pen. It weighs a little over five pounds, so it's not the lightest option.

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Get a stylus.

A pen is a definite necessity when creating digital art with an all-in-one tablet.

A stylus won’t work with your tablet if you don’t double-check its compatibility beforehand. 

It’s also a good idea to check if the stylus has pressure sensitivity since this will allow for a more natural drawing experience.

Please note that while the Wacom Bamboo Tip is compatible with some Android smartphones, it lacks pressure sensitivity. 

The following samples demonstrate this. 3rd generation iPad Pro iPad Pros can use the new Apple Pencil 2.

Best for older than 2020 iPads
Apple Pencil (1st Generation)

The iPad's best stylus, even after all these years.

When it comes to the iPad, there is no other stylus that compares to the Apple Pencil. Despite the fact that we intended to highlight the other available choices, there is no doubting that the Pencil is the superior alternative.

It has palm rejection and pressure sensitivity, and there is no latency whatsoever, all of which provide artists with the finest sketching experience that is possibly attainable.

The cost is by far the most significant drawback.

We wanted to showcase some of your options since, despite the fact that the Apple Pencil is likely a wonderful tool, it is also likely to be priced beyond the reach of many designers' budgets.

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Apple Pencil (2nd Generation)
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Smartphone- Digital Art On Smartphone

Digital art can now be started on a smartphone. 

The downside is that your smartphone’s screen is generally rather tiny, making it more difficult to draw on it. To make writing on your tablet a little bit simpler, you’ll probably want a pen.

In the event that you have an iPhone, Procreate Pocket is an excellent software for learning about digital art.


Because you already own a smartphone, there are no additional expenses for you.
Using this, you can sketch virtually any place.


It’s possible that the display is rather tiny.
A stylus is almost certainly something you’ll want to invest in.

How to get Started with Digital Art- Software

The software you’ll need to get started with digital art.

You’ll also need software or an app for your phone or tablet to get started with digital painting. 

The cost of digital painting software varies widely, from free to astronomical. 

Whether you’re new to digital art, my recommendation is to experiment with free or low-cost tools to determine if you like it.

Aside from that, the program that you use for your digital art will be influenced by the technology you have available. 

If you want to use Procreate, for example, you’ll need an iPad, while Photoshop can only work on a PC or Microsoft Surface Pro.

Apps and software that are free of charge

There is a slew of open-source digital painting tools to choose from. Try one of these applications before you buy a more expensive subscription or software.


An excellent alternative to Photoshop, this is a free, open-source application. 

It may not be as robust as Photoshop, but it does offer a wide range of customization choices. You may find lessons and tools on the Krita website to help you get started with painting. 

You may get the software for free by clicking here.

Medibang Paint Pro

For manga artists, here’s another free digital art tool worth checking out Here.

Finally, the program’s snap guidelines make it simple to draw precise lines in comic panels created using Mediabang Paint Pro for windows/Mac

In addition, this Mediabang paint pro app is compatible with Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS devices. You may get the software for free by clicking here. 

Autodesk Sketchbook Pro image

Software for drawing in 3D. Autodesk Sketchbook( free tool) is another another free app and software bundle. 

Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS users may all take use of it. So you don’t get sidetracked by all the tools, the application has a clean, simple design. 

Download the free version of this digital painting application right now.

Paid Software and Apps

In this section, we will discuss various paid painting programs and applications that are available online. 

Some of these software packages or mobile applications have a very modest price tag, while others might be rather pricey. 

On the other hand, in my opinion, it is not at all necessary for you to spend a lot of money.


FREE TRIAL OPTIONS. You may determine whether or not you enjoy the application in this manner before committing to purchasing it.

Nomad Sculpt: for Digital Sculpt

Check out everything you need to know about Nomad Sculpt in my list of Blogs.

The Former Sketchfab developer Stéphane Ginier has developed and released Nomad, a highly promising new digital sculpting app for iPads and Android tablets.

This $14.99 app enables artists to sculpt and paint organic characters on the move, then export the results in OBJ or glTF format to refine in other DCC software.

Nomad Dculpt has a comprehensive set of digital sculpting, 3D painting, and remeshing tools. Nomad comes with a comprehensive set of sculpting tools that can be used on a touchscreen or with the iPad’s Apple Pencil stylus.

Nomad Sculpt: Nomad is a sculpting & painting mobile app, available on Android and iOS.Costs around $14.99

Nomad Sculpt download in Apple store .. Click here

Procreate $9.99

You may download the Procreate software for your iPad for the low price of $9.99, or you can get Procreate Pocket for just $4.99. 

You will just need to pay for it once, and you will receive all of the updates in the future, which is a really amazing deal. 

With each new version, the team behind Procreate adds even more fantastic features to the app, gradually transforming it into a genuine, full-fledged art creation application. 

The fact that this program is so user-friendly for novices is, in my opinion, one of its greatest advantages; as a result, you’ll be able to create fantastic digital paintings in no time at all! 

Buy & Download the Procreate app by clicking here.

Adobe Photoshop and the Fresco app cost $9.99 per month to use together.

There are a lot of professionals that use Adobe Photoshop, and it offers a lot of different options to choose from. 

The fact that it has so many functions, though, can make it extremely daunting, making it less ideal for people just starting out. 

The price of Photoshop (and the Fresco app for iPads) is another drawback to using either product. 

It’s possible that being locked into a subscription isn’t something you desire, especially when it comes to the Fresco app. 

Get 65% off for Adobe deals.

You will be required to pay $9.99 every month Adobe Fresco App , whereas the purchase of Procreate will only need you to pay $9.99 once.

Best Graphic Design Tools- Software

Creative Software:  Adobe CC – Get 65% Off on Adobe CC

Buy Corel Painter

Corel Painter ($218) and Corel Painter Essentials ($32)

When you want to obtain the sense that you are painting with actual painting, this is a fantastic software (for both Windows and Mac) that you may use. 

Due to the fact that it is extremely effective at imitating genuine paint and pencils. 

Get your Corel Painter here

Subscribe for only AU$ 17 monthly (billed annually)

365-day Subscription $ 218 

Save on Corel Painter Essentials 6

Get Corel Painter Get Corel Painter here

Corel Official Web Site

Corel Draw Essentials is a competitor/alternative to Adobe Illustrator.

Adobe Illustrator and CorelDRAW are two sophisticated tools that are based on vector graphics and produce professional-quality output. 

Choose Adobe Illustrator if you already have experience working with products from the Adobe family. It is the tool that is generally accepted as the standard for vector editing and graphics..

Get your Corel Draw Essentials here

Check out Corel Draw Vs Adobe Illustrator Comparison.

Get CorelDraw Get Corel Draw here

Best Price – CorelDraw Graphics Suite

Wrapping up:

In my view, the best way to get started with digital art is to:

It’s possible that after reading this post, your head is spinning from all the information presented, but my goal is for you to be able to make an informed decision on how to begin digital painting. 

But perhaps all you want is to hear my viewpoint and find out what I would do in this situation. 

Before I can provide you with useful guidance, I believe it is vital for you to give some thought to how seriously you want to pursue a career in digital art. 

When I first started dabbling with digital painting, which was around 10 years ago, I was completely enthusiastic about it and eager to commit a respectable amount of money into it. 

If I were to begin everything from scratch right now second, the first things I would get are probably an iPad or iPad Air, an Apple Pencil, and the Procreate App.

Therefore, if you really enjoy sketching and doing art, it can be worthwhile to put some money down and purchase an iPad. 

This is especially true if you draw a lot (or iPad Air, iPad Pro). 

I believe that Procreate is an excellent tool for beginners, and there are a lot of lessons available online for it.

About the Author:

Manny Acharya is the co-founder of Artmellows. Your go-to place for Design, Digital Art, Digital sculpting, Photography, Design Tools and gears Info, and Product Reviews. Manny is a Digital Artist, 3D Sculpt Designer, Ardent Photography, Drone flying Enthusiast, and tech Lover. He supercharges Digital Art and design by crafting memorable 3D sculptures & 2D Design and art. Learn more About Manny:

PS: Manny has created a Beginner Friedly ebook to Learn the Nomad 3D Sculpt App. Know More about the eBook. Know more about Manny

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