Is this the best iPhone painting app?

If you think that shrinking the popular painting app Procreate will hobble its usability, think again.

Our Verdict

For £2.29, you can't go wrong with this responsive art app - as long as you have an iPhone.


  • 12 brushes
  • Redesigned UI
  • Cheap


  • Cramped for stylus use
  • iPhone-only (optimised for iPhone 6 and 6 Plus

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Procreate Pocket has big ambitions

Pocket boasts a 4K Cinema Canvas for the iPhone 5, 5c, 5s, 6 and 6 Plus

The £2.29 Procreate Pocket is a version of the well-received Procreate iPad app that's been specially designed for iPhones (sorry Android users).

Procreate on the larger iPad tablets, with their high-resolution screens and range of compatible styluses, makes sense. We were intrigued to see how the app fares on the smaller iPhone.

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When you create art you need your tools to feel responsive enough to register even the most subtle of movements, all while keeping pace with your drawing.

The Procreate Pocket app does an excellent job of this, with every mark we made, either via finger or stylus, being faithfully recorded on screen.

Procreate Pocket has big ambitions

Procreate's interface has been tweaked for the smaller iPhone screen

Input lag, which is where there's an annoying delay between your stroke and the mark being shown on screen, wasn't noticeable: a crucial element that makes Procreate Pocket feel solid, dependable and responsive.

The biggest obstacle that Procreate Pocket faces is that iPhone screens are obviously much smaller, making for a rather cramped canvas.

Unsurprisingly, Savage Interactive has put a lot of effort into redesigning the app's interface and its tools to work on the smaller screen sizes.

Yet just because Procreate Pocket's user interface has been scaled down for the iPhone, it doesn't mean the rest of the app is lacking in features.

Savage Interactive has put a lot of effort into redesigning the app's interface

With pretty much every tool found in the larger Procreate app present and correct, including a multi-touch colour wheel, and freehand selection and transform tools, this has plenty to get involved with.

And, each of these tools has been carefully tweaked to work on the smaller screen.

Procreate Pocket has big ambitions

Procreate Pocket crams all the best features of the senior version of the app into the tiny iPhone

Brush sliders can be used with a single finger to customise the various brushes that come included with the app. It's a nice touch (if you'll forgive the pun) that gives you full control over the paintbrush without having to battle with an awkward interface.

The fact that recent iPhones, especially the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, have got plenty of processing power in them means that Procreate Pocket does a good job of keeping up with your strokes, with the Silica engine running at 60 frames a second for a smooth painting experience.

Procreate Pocket has big ambitions

The 64-bit Silica painting engine does a great job of keeping up with your brush strokes for a smooth experience and an easy-to-use application

Considering the price, Procreate Pocket app is an excellent tool for working on your art while out and about. The range of tools and settings is impressive, but perhaps best of all is the fact that Savage Interactive hasn't simply ported its tablet app to the smaller iPhone screen.

Instead, the developer has taken the time and effort to carefully redesign the app to work brilliantly on the smaller iPhone screen. It's a powerful, well thought-out and useful tool, all for less than the price of a pint of beer.

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The Verdict

out of 10

Procreate Pocket

For £2.29, you can't go wrong with this responsive art app - as long as you have an iPhone.

The Creative Bloq team is made up of a group of design fans, and has changed and evolved since Creative Bloq began back in 2012. The current website team consists of eight full-time members of staff: Editor Georgia Coggan, Deputy Editor Rosie Hilder, Deals Editor Beren Neale, Senior News Editor Daniel Piper, Digital Arts and Design Editor Ian Dean, Tech Reviews Editor Erlingur Einarsson and Ecommerce Writer Beth Nicholls and Staff Writer Natalie Fear, as well as a roster of freelancers from around the world. The 3D World and ImagineFX magazine teams also pitch in, ensuring that content from 3D World and ImagineFX is represented on Creative Bloq.