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6 inspirational apps for graphic designers

July 7, 2014 • By

When the creative well runs dry, it’s important to know how to replenish it. To become inspired, you now only need to visit your device’s app store. Here are a few of the best apps for graphic designers and artists to kick start their next projects:

myPantone: Find the Perfect Color ($7.99)

This app is a bit pricey, but its handiness makes it a great tool for any designer. This app places Pantone library access at your fingertips and makes it accessible from your phone. You can build, share and export color palettes as well. One of the most unique features of myPantone allows you to find Pantone colors from a picture taken with your smart phone’s camera. Of course, the accuracy of this depends on the quality of your camera, so if it may be time to upgrade your device. If you’re looking for a basic color selector and don’t want to drop $7.99 for the myPantone app, Magic Color Picker is a good free alternative. You can use the palette or sliders to adjust the color. It supports RGB, HSV, HSL and YUV colors.

Fontly: Get it Write (free)

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Fontly is an app for those who love typography. If you’ve ever stumbled across a great font on your travels, you’ll appreciate this app. Capture the font via your phone’s camera, title and tag it, and save it for later. Need further inspiration? Search and browse what other Fontly users have captured. Like myPantone, there’s an active online community of Fontly users who share their expertise and inspiration.

PicWorld: Find the World (free)

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Sometimes inspiration comes in the form of someone else’s picture. This app works as an image search engine. You can use keywords to find the perfect image, access your search history and keep track of your favorite pictures from the web. If you have no idea what will inspire you, choose the “I feel lucky” option and see what shows up.

NASA App: Inspiration from out of this World (free)

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Access more than 60,000 images (and videos) in 5 categories: universe, solar system, earth, aeronautics and astronauts. These photos are not only inspiring, but they’re also awe-inspiring. Mark your favorites. Share them with your social networks. If 60,000 images is too many, try the NASA Image of the Day. This free app serves up NASA’s daily image to your phone.

Cloud Print: See Your Image on Paper (free)

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While phones are extremely handy in finding, selecting and organizing images, sometimes you need to see them in front of you on paper. This app allows you to print from your smart phone to any Google Cloud Print connected printer. If you need print options with greater selection, including choosing the perfect image size and cropping abilities, HP IPrint Photo can do the job.

PhotoShake!: Seeing Old Photos New Ways (free)

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Just as seeing an image can inspire you on your next project, so can viewing an old image in new ways. This app allows you to easily combine several photos to make fun new images. Select a theme and your photos and shake your phone to create a random collage. Beware, PhotoShake! can be addictive as well as entertaining. PhotoShake! is great for inspiration and social sharing, but its low-res output means printing is not a possibility. If you are looking for a photo app that offers more editing features look into the free PhotoGrid. Inspiration can come in all shapes and sizes, but it’s great luck when it comes from something as nearby as your phone. Graphic designers and artists can find a world of endless inspiration on their phones, and now they can easily capture ideas with them too.

What apps do you use to become inspired? Share your experiences in the comments below.

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