This writer recently purchased an iPad, and fell in love with two experiences on it: typing (on a tablet, yes) and doodling.

I enjoyed typing on it because I’m a stickler for fonts and iOS devices in general have good typography. I enjoyed doodling, and eventually drawing, on it because it was just so easy and fun. Here are three apps — one for iPads and the other two, web-apps, that could keep you creating for hours.


Paper is awesome. It comes from makers FiftyThree. It’s a no-frills app best used on an iPad with a beautiful palette of colours, and one default stylus to start with. You’re presented with a blank screen to start with, and from the word go, you’re going to have trouble believing how well you can paint.

The app is free, but you’ll have to purchase more styluses with in-app payments (of Rs. 55 each). Besides a fully clean canvas, you can also browse through existing pieces of artwork created with Paper to inspire you (some of them are marvellous) or you can modify from a sampling of ‘template’ drawings that come loaded with the app.


This is a web-app for people who are no longer doodling yet aren’t creating Cirque du Soleil banners. Sketchpad is fully browser-based, and is built with HTML and WebGL. That means you can open it on any browser (except IE 6, of course) from anywhere – all you’ll need is a net connection.

For a free app, it comes with an impressive suite of colours and brushes; there’s nothing stopping you from creating pretty much any drawing you want. Saving files is also easy: just click the floppy-disc icon on the top right corner and voila, you’re served a PNG for download.

Of course, Sketchpad doesn’t go all the way. Even though creating sophisticated pieces of art is possible, you’re going to notice the lack of control at those levels.


QueekyPaint is Sketchpad with a twist: you can record your work of art as you make it. It’s very useful if you want to learn about the workflow of other artistes who draw and paint online. QueekyPaint also lets you collaborate with other artistes and your friends online.

Other such apps

Some other interesting drawing apps that are browser-based are, Draw Island and AWW.