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Krita vector graphics editor

Krita is an open source program designed for lovers of digital drawing and illustration, launched in 2005 with the intention of impersonating the award-winning Photoshop.

Although it was originally developed as a free tool for editing photos and images, its creators decided to turn the matter around a decade ago. Over there in 2009 they decided to turn it into a powerful digital painting and drawing suite, focused on creation from scratch.

Since then, it has earned a place among all the graphic editors that exist in the market today, due to its simplicity and the inclusion of fundamental and innovative tools for editing, both professionally and simply by distraction.

Currently, with the world of visual content commanding the Adobe brand, it is normal to see that Adobe Illustrator is the leading program for the treatment of vector graphics, we are talking about drawings, artwork, logos, websites design, designs for both campaigns and for comics and animations, among others.

However, Krita allows most of the main design functions to be done completely free of charge and with excellent results, ideal for those who cannot live without Illustrator. It is certainly a pretty interesting alternative to Adobe Illustrator to try out.


Krita: basic tools

Krita has a nice, simple and intuitive interface, much like Photoshop. In other words, if you come from Adobe Illustrator, you may see it as very simple.

All this is thanks to its large development community, which has been polishing its characteristics for years. Above all, they stand out from version 4, where charming functions were included, such as compatibility to work with HDR images and some improvement to handle PSD files.

Below we will describe some of its basic functions and characteristics, essential for any digital painting tool:


As soon as we start using Krita to draw, we will realize the number of brushes and brushes that it brings by default. Yes, the most characteristic base of Krita is its 9 brush motors, to provide artists with different types of brushes to meet the specific needs of each job.

Best of all, it is the ability to create your own custom brushes, due to the variety of settings that each motor provides for creating them. In addition, you can save and organize them for use on another occasion.

Also, you have at your disposal three brush stabilizers, to obtain smooth strokes, in case we have shaky hands.

In fact, for all those artists who make their sketches with ink, there is the possibility of selecting black ink brushes to make the typical doodles used as an eraser to start creating the final design.


A predefined and important option for any editor, layers management.

With Krita editor you can organize your drawings, allowing you to group and flatten the layers, for example, to use a drawing layer as the background of another layer. Or, a sketch to start doing another project.

Also, you can merge the layers or remove any imperfections, based on the previous layer. Taking into account that we will have three display modes for these purposes.

Transformation tools

Like any editor of this type, it allows you to deform, distort, move and modify any aspect of the image, both freely and non-destructively using a transformation mask.


Another interesting feature is the masks. It is a very essential tool to modify the image through layers.

Indeed, they are necessary for the creation or modification of an image, therefore, Krita offers various types, including:

Transparency mask

The transparency mask is ideal for quickly removing any detail in a non-destructive way.

It should be noted that this tool works based on a gray scale. That is, you will have the possibility to place the selector on a scale where white means opacity and black means transparency.

Finally, it will be enough to pass the brush over the figure that we want to disappear permanently or momentarily.

Filter masks

In order to obtain better image quality, we have filter masks at our disposal.

Thus, we can modify everything related to color, lights and shadow. From tones, levels, balances, saturation and contrasts, to applying blurs, gradients, reducing noise, among others.

In the image you can see all the options offered by the filter mask:

Coloring mask

Krita version 4 incorporated various improvements and functions, the coloring masks is one of the new features of the program.

This mask allows you to automatically color the strokes of a drawing. Also, to limit the extension of the colors by means of lines. Without a doubt, a great option for drawing comics or projects where you need to color quickly.

For example, we can easily color the following drawing with the coloring masks.

Let's see how the coloring mask works:

Firstly, we create a coloring mask. To do this, simply go to the layer panel, press the button of the "+" sign and choose between the different masks:


Krita color mask 1


We make small strokes with the desired colors in the different areas of the drawing:

Krita color mask 2


Finally, we will have two key buttons to apply the modification. One of them will apply the color of the strokes we make ("Show" button), while the other will hide the strokes of the drawing, in order to make other adjustments to the canvas ("Edit" button).

Krita color mask 3


In a few minutes we can get this result:

Krita color mask 4

Krita community

Behind Krita there is a large active company that watches over the maintenance and improvement of the software. Also, it has a large community of artists who share their personalized resources to the rest of the world, such as brushes, textures, patterns, gradients, among others.

Thanks to Krita and his resource manager, you will be able to import packages from other artists with the aim of improving your repertoire with interesting and useful little things, and why not, also create your own resource packages and share them in the community.

In fact, the Krita Foundation contributes its grain of sand, offering users materials and courses with highly educational information carried out by themselves, which they can access for free from the Internet.

In order to provide its users with the necessary knowledge to correctly use both the basic and advanced tools of the program, and to be able to draw with Krita as soon as possible.


Krita download

If it has caught your attention, you can download Krita for free from its official website:

First of all, the program is compatible with Windows, Mac OSX and Linux operating systems and the official requirements are as follows:

  • Operating system: Windows 8.1 or later, OSX 10.12, Linux
  • RAM memory: minimum 4GB of RAM
  • GPU (optional): OpenGL 3.0 or higher.
  • Compatible digital tablets: Wacom, Huion, Yiyinova, Surface Pro



Being a free source application, developed by the community, it has incredible performance and is capable of supporting the entire workflow in a comfortable way.

In summary, Krita is presented as an excellent option for anyone wishing to get started in digital art, considering that the program is made to create designs from scratch and has a variety of fundamental functions, and easy to understand by the various tutorials on Krita, for a reason, was awarded the best free painting software of 2019.