Gear List: What I Use for Graphic Design + Illustration
Before I used my iPad, Procreate and Apple pencil to letter and illustrate my designs, I created all work on paper before bringing them in to the digital space with my Adobe programs. Over time, my workload as a freelancer grew (yay!) and the process of drawing on paper just became too tedious and time consuming for myself and my clients - so I switched over to the use of the iPad Pro combo and haven’t looked back! Everything I create is still 100% sketched and created by hand - but my process has been able to speed up significantly in time.
Before the iPad came into the picture, these are the tools and materials that I used for design and illustration!
Micron Brush Pens
Strathmore Bristol Smooth Paper - although any other smooth, card stock paper would work
Palomino Blackwing Pencils (my true favorite)
Quality Pencil Sharpener
iPhone 7S Plus or Scanner - I use my phone to take photos of my drawings and bring them into my Adobe Programs, but a scanner would work well too!
Adobe Creative Cloud programs (most often, InDesign and Illustrator)
Macbook Pro 15” 2015
And here are the tools that I use the most often now!
1st generation iPad Pro 12.9”
Procreate App - this is the app that I draw in on the iPad, using my Apple Pencil and the brushes that came with the app. If you want other brushes/effects, I know that you can purchase and download more depending on the desired look.
Where I shop:
Local Craft Stores (like Michael’s, Joann, Hobby Lobby, or mom and pop shops)
Amazon (where I would get most of my pens, pencils and paper!)
eBay, Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist for tech goods. (Jesús helped me find my practically new iPad on FB Marketplace for about 1/2 of the original price tag. So I always love to encourage looking at these second hand sources first, especially if you’re on a budget).
Apple Store/ App Store
Hopefully this is helpful in your process of finding your own favorite design tools! As a simple reminder, these are all just my personal preferences that I’ve found and enjoyed over time - if you try any of them out, there’s always a chance that you’ll find other goods or brands which you love even more! That’s the best part.
Another friendly disclaimer: the Amazon links that I’ve shared in this post are all affiliate links - which does mean that I get a tiny percentage of sale if purchased (it’ll just help pay my bills - yay!). In the spirit of transparency, I’ve ONLY included links that I’ve personally bought from in hopes that it might make your life a little bit easier as well. Thanks so much for the support always - I get to do what I do for a living because of people like you.