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Best Graphic Design Software Teens Should Know About

Interested in graphic design? Whether you’re a parent of a teen interested in the subject or a student yourself who is passionate about making a career in the field, we have some tools and advice to help.

Graphic design is all about creating visual content to communicate messages. Whether it’s designing a compelling and visually appealing magazine or an eye-catching brochure, graphic designers are knowledgeable about optimizing the user experience while also being creative. And to accomplish their designs, they often utilize graphic design software. There are a seemingly endless amount of software options available, but how do you know which is best for you?

The best graphic design software ultimately depends on your skill level and goals for creation. Here are eight online graphic design software options teens should know about if they’re interested in turning their passion into something more.

Adobe Creative Suite

Adobe Creative Suite is often hailed as the best graphic design software due to its variety of applications. While it’s used by graphic design professionals, beginners can also start honing their skills with this software. PCMag breaks down what each Adobe graphic design software is good for if you’re wondering where to start:

  • Adobe Photoshop for layer editing and raster
  • Adobe Illustrator for vector editing and illustrating
  • Adobe InDesign CC for publication layout and design

While these are not all the applications Adobe has to offer, they are the most relevant to graphic design.


Some of the best graphic design software for beginners is free! DesignWizard, HubSpot explains, is just one of them. This tool offers a large database of images and free templates to start your journey in the world of graphic design. The interface is also especially easy to use, meaning you can quickly learn the ins and outs of the software. 
DesignWizard is ideal if you want to learn more about graphic design, and then when you’re ready to try more powerful features, pay for the premium version.


Sketch< is one tool that is only available to Mac users. This software is best if you’re focused on web, app, user experience, or interface design. You can easily work with multiple artboards and vectors without destroying their original form. However, it’s important to note that Sketch is not the best software for photo editing or print work, so if these design elements interest you, you are better off with a different tool.


This is another free tool that is incredibly user-friendly. In fact, even pre-teens can benefit from using Canva if they’re interested in graphic design. This graphic design software is ideal for creating eBooks, infographics, email headers, and flyers. The free version has plenty of available graphics and templates that are perfect for beginners starting to explore the website. To access more complex tools and features, you will need to invest in the paid version.


GIMP is short for GNU Image Manipulation Program and is a popular open-source graphic design software. It’s often compared to Photoshop due to its functionality and set of tools that cover everything from video editing and retouching to original artwork creation. The amount of capabilities is perfect for beginners to learn the ropes and for experienced designers to build upon their skills.


Game Designing highlights Inkscape as the best graphic design software for those with a handy stylus and a keen sense of what they want to draw and create. The vector creation is the crux of the program and one of the best features that helps designers make a number of things with ease. It’s also free and open-source, which comes with its own pros and cons. Namely, that the software is known to be buggy and laggy sometimes.


Finally, Gravit is a well-known vector design application software that is home to many tools for creating vector art and a self-adjusting interface. As another free graphic design software, it’s great for beginners and is available on nearly every operating system, from Mac and Windows to ChromeOS and Linux. More functionality is available with a subscription, but signing up for a free trial is a good way to automatically get access to these features and see if you like them.

Graphic Design Programs at LIHSA

Long Island High School for The Arts offers teens interested in the arts an opportunity to explore and refine their talents through CTE-style programs, including graphic design. Students can choose between six pathways that include independent projects and field trips that help them gain experience and knowledge in art-centered careers such as Visual & Media Arts.

In this pathway, students can pursue their interests in the fine arts, filmmaking, and digital media, as they learn from a dedicated team of teachers who are accomplished artists and performers, as well as master classes taught by renowned professionals. Students can work independently and collaborate to create graphic designs while using some of these software programs and more during the academic year.

At LIHSA, we understand that hands-on education is the best way for students to discover who they are as individuals while honing skills they can make a career out of in college and beyond.

Apply to our Visual & Performing Arts School today or request information to learn more!