Iphone5TransBGAs a designer, there is one tool I could not live without (well, besides my laptop).  That tool is my iPhone – but the iPad comes in a quick second.

But what is an iPhone without the fun or helpful apps that make it customized for your life?

Today’s blog is dedicated to the apps that make the life of a designer so much easier:



photoshopexpressPhotoshop Express

I love taking pictures, but the camera on the iPhone is not an SLR.  Adobe’s Photoshop Express tool is excellent at editing photos while the photo is still on your phone.  You can chose from standard filters, or get into the detailed editing by cropping, adjusting clarity, exposure, contrast, temperature, etc.



adobeideasAdobe Ideas

Another Adobe app that is a must for a creative mind is the Adobe Ideas app.  If you start every design project with a sketch – which is highly recommended – you may run into a time when you are missing a pencil and paper when a brilliant idea comes to mind.  Pull out your iPhone and sketch on this app.  But what makes it truly useful is that you can save your sketch, email it to yourself, and fine tune in Adobe Illustrator on your computer.




Brainstorming is needed when you struggle with finding an idea for a project.  One of the best ways to do this is to create a mind map.  SimpleMind+ does just this – you can create a mind map digitally – fast and simple.  If you download SimpleMind on to your computer, you can then send your map to your desktop via wifi.




Keeping track of all the paper sizes, such as A4, B10, Ledger, etc. is a pretty big job.  That job is made easier with the International Paper Sizes app.  You simply plug in the paper size, unit preferred, and it gives you the dimensions.  That makes one less thing for you to memorize.





I will admit:  I hate scanning.  It is just an added step that takes a few extra minutes but as a digital person, it just isn’t something I enjoy doing.  With TinyScan, instead of using your big scanner, you take a picture of the item needed and it saves it as a pdf in the quality you prefer and you email it to yourself.




I constantly find fonts that I don’t recognize in displays, packaging, etc. when shopping.  I pull out my camera and take a photo using the WhatTheFont app.  It then matches the font and gives me the name and weight.  Then when back on the computer, I can note the font for future design work.




Ever have a brochure or poster that you want to know the measurements for a similar size project?  Or maybe you have been asked to apply a design to a car or wall – but don’t have the measurements or a tape ruler with you.  RulerPhone makes that job easier.  You simply throw a credit card sized card onto the item and take picture.  After marking the card on the app, the app gives you the accurate dimensions.




One of the best options for creative inspiration is looking at what others are doing.  Dexigner is a resource of current design stories on the web, including winners of design awards, etc.  Keep up to date on trends, etc with this helpful app.





A great tool for researching colors for a project is the Palettes app.  You can look up color palettes from different websites or take a photo and see the colors used.  With this app, you can easily come up with beautiful color combinations and then find the CMYK equivalent and use in an upcoming project.



boardsMoodboard (only for the iPad)

Last but not least is the Moodboard app that unfortunately is only available for the iPad.  In this app, you can create a board for any project you are working on, using clipped web pages, photos, color chips, etc.  It is like a filing system made for a designer.



Keep in mind this is only a small list of the many apps out there to make a designer’s life easier.  Please share with us any other creative apps so that we can try them out as well.