How to Learn Graphic Design Without Technical Knowledge and Paid Tools?

When it comes to achieving success with your website, visual appeal is paramount. Although persuasive written content and engaging social media posts can help your brand stand out, the first thing that users notice when they click on backlinks or search engine results is the overall look and feel of your site. Recent studies indicate that users typically focus on a particular area of a website within 2.6 seconds and form a general impression within just 0.05 seconds. This means that you have a very brief window to make a positive impact on your visitors or risk losing them forever. Therefore, it’s crucial to design web pages that are both visually appealing and contextually relevant. Larger companies often hire graphic designers to create visually stunning designs that are consistent across their web pages, but small and medium-sized businesses may not have the budget for this. That’s where our free Graphic Design Essentials Course on HubSpot Academy can help. It provides fundamental design training and teaches you how to create simple yet effective designs.

What is the Best Free Graphic Design Software?

In order to address website issues such as unappealing images, hard-to-read text, and a poor color scheme, a simple solution is needed. Free graphic design software can offer an affordable way to customize the look and feel of your site. However, with a multitude of options available, it’s important to consider your current graphical ability and intended use case in order to determine the best fit for your business. If you have little experience with graphic design tools, a simple and streamlined solution may be ideal, whereas those with a background in design may prefer more advanced tools with greater customization and control. The level of depth required for the software will also depend on the scope of changes you plan to make to your site. Here are some of the best free graphic design tools available, along with some pros and cons to consider.


Platform: Windows

DesignWizard is considered one of the top graphic design software options for beginners who don’t want to pay for a program. It includes a vast collection of images and more than 10,000 free templates. Its interface is straightforward and user-friendly, and users can also generate custom templates quickly. DesignWizard is especially useful for novices as a primary free graphic design tool.

Although DesignWizard has a user-friendly interface and doesn’t require any initial costs, it’s essential to recognize that many of its advanced features are only accessible in the paid version.


Platforms: PC, Mac, Linux

Lunacy is a software tool that is designed to cater to the needs of vector graphics editing. It specializes in this type of editing and is offered for free, without any hidden fees, advertisements, or locked features. This makes it an ideal choice for aspiring UI/UX designers who cannot afford to subscribe to expensive graphic design applications. Although it is an excellent option for beginners, it has an array of powerful tools that offer advanced features, such as a pre-made UI kit, a text generator for placeholder content, and a range of pen and eyedropper tools.

Lunacy is an excellent collaboration tool for graphic design teams and group projects, as it allows you to share a document with up to 100 team members and edit it together in real time. You can also comment on each other’s work and receive feedback instantly, making it easier to collaborate efficiently and effectively.

Setka Editor

Platforms: Windows, Mac

Setka is a graphic design software that aims to provide users with all the tools needed to create content that leads to conversions. It is primarily geared toward improving branding across various online channels, such as websites, social media platforms, and ad campaigns. Setka is designed to be used within your current CMS or in the cloud. However, it is important to note that while the Setka Editor can be used for free for a trial period of two weeks, users will need to choose a plan (Starter, Pro, or Enterprise) to access the complete set of features and continue using Setka.



Platforms: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS

Canva is a free web-based design tool that provides users with a vast selection of professional, easy-to-customize templates for a variety of design needs. Whether you’re creating an ebook, infographic, business card, or email header, Canva’s templates make the design process more manageable. However, it’s worth noting that while the free version is excellent for beginners working with templates, more advanced designers may need to invest in the paid version or try out more complex free graphic design software as they improve their skills. The paid version provides access to more advanced tools and features, such as team sharing, that may be beneficial for more complex projects.

Adobe Spark

Platforms: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS

Adobe Spark is a free graphic design software that offers an alternative to Adobe’s for-pay software, Adobe Illustrator. Although it does not have as many features, it does support integration with other Adobe products and comes with a wide range of free templates. Spark is user-friendly and an excellent choice for those who need to quickly create posters or videos for advertising campaigns. However, the software’s limited feature set means that it is more suitable for beginners and may not be as useful for more complex projects or experienced designers. The software is available on both web and mobile platforms, allowing you to design from anywhere, at any time.


Platforms: Windows, Mac, Android, Linux

Krita is a free and open-source painting program that is designed by artists, for artists. The software is developed based on the needs of the design community and relies on donations for ongoing development. Krita comes with a customizable user interface, a wide range of tools, and a comprehensive resource manager. It is an excellent tool for businesses looking to enhance their graphic design impact, provided they have the assistance of an experienced designer. However, for companies in need of simple and streamlined solutions, other software on this list may be a better fit for beginners.



Platforms: PC, Mac, Chrome OS, Linux

Gravit is a vector design application developed by the creators of Corel Draw. It offers a range of tools for creating vector art and has a self-adjusting interface, making it a top choice among the best free graphic design software for Mac, Windows, ChromeOS, and Linux. It’s important to note that when you sign up for a free trial of Gravit, you get access to “Pro” features, such as the ability to work offline and view version history. However, these features are lost when the trial period ends, unless you are willing to pay for a subscription.



Platforms: Windows, Mac, Linux

Blender is a 3D creation suite that is open-source, meaning that it is free to use and modify. With Blender, graphic designers can create everything from rigging to animation to rendering and motion tracking, and it also supports 2D animation. Blender has an active community of users who are committed to improving the tool, making it a great choice for those who want to collaborate with others. However, it’s important to note that Blender is not ideal for beginners due to its complex menus and extensive range of design options. To make the most of this powerful tool, you need to have a solid foundation in graphic design basics.


Platforms: Windows, Mac, Linux

Inkscape is a free graphic design tool that offers a plethora of features for both beginners and experienced users. Its tagline is “Draw freely,” and the software lives up to it. Inkscape has cross-platform support and an active community. It’s known for its excellent vector art options and wide format compatibility. However, the controls can be sluggish, which may frustrate some users who need to create and publish designs quickly.



Platforms: Windows, Mac, Linux

Gimp is a widely-used open-source design software, often compared to the paid design tool Photoshop. It has gained recognition for its ability to handle various file formats, user-friendly digital retouching features, and fast creation of designs from scratch. Additionally, its customizable interface caters to the preferences of experienced designers. However, it does not support any Photoshop plugins.



Platform: Windows

Genially is a design tool that offers a simple and user-friendly interface along with many options for designers to create their own artwork from scratch. It offers pre-built templates and interactive features such as buttons, layers, and hidden text. The free version of Genially does not limit the number of projects that can be created and has a large community of over 12 million users. However, some features such as offline viewing and brand personalization are only available in the paid plans.

Paint 3D

Platform: Windows

The free and updated Paint 3D design tool by Microsoft offers more functionality, although it may not match up to some of the more powerful design tools on the list. It features realistic textures, 2D cutout creation, and a range of 3D tools and effects. Paint 3D is a good choice for beginners who want an easy way to get started with graphic design, as it has almost no learning curve and works well on all Windows 10 devices, given it is developed by Microsoft.

Picking the Right Platform for Graphic Design

While most graphic design tools are available on multiple platforms, including PC, Mac, and mobile, there is no distinct advantage to selecting one platform over the other. The tools offer the same functionality regardless of which platform you choose. However, for beginners, opting for a PC or mobile platform may be the best choice as Macs can have a less intuitive user interface, which presents a learning curve that may not be necessary for those just starting with graphic design. In contrast, Mac-based solutions may be preferable for graphic design professionals and marketing experts due to their focus on function over form.

Creating a Great First Impression

The initial impression that your website creates on visitors can significantly affect their perception of your brand and their probability of converting into paying customers. Therefore, it is crucial to use the right graphic design software to ensure that your website provides visual value and enhances the user experience, from their first visit to their eventual purchase. Additionally, using the right software can make it easier to continually improve and adjust the aesthetics of your site.


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