Top 10 Resource Tools for Creatives
As a creative, you have probably tried and tested tools that will either maximise your time, find great ideas or produce awesome projects.
Now I haven’t shared my ultimate resource tools to anyone because I liked keeping them to myself. Selfish a bit. Lol.
But today, I will let you in on my little secret: how I was able to build my website from scratch without professional help, create products, illustrate, sculpt, write blog posts, juggle to maintain order in my household (yes, I unfortunately got my neat freak trait from my mama!) while keeping a full-time job in my professional field (I have since retired from my career to focus on my art, yay!).
All that I was able to do because these tools help me achieve them. We “creatives” always secretly wish for more time because there just isn’t enough in a day.
Today, I’ll let you in on the closest thing I could get to that illogical wish.
Note: I am in no way affiliated to the products mentioned below nor am I paid to write this post. This is my complete & honest review.
My Top 10 Creative Resource Tools:
1. iPad Pro and Apple Pencil
This has got to be no. 1 on my list. The large display and the precision of the Apple Pencil to emulate the feeling of drawing on a real paper is ingenious. I have the Wacom Pro Pen and the Mobile Studio Pro but it still cannot beat the experience of my iPad Pro and pencil.
When I am low on energy and can’t work in my studio but still want to get things done, I can still do it on my iPad in my bed. It’s a bad habit, I know but I still get things done.
I largely use this drawing app for all my digital illustration work since 2014. The updates and improvements of Procreate since its release is massive. It’s a paid app ($14.99 AUD as of this writing) but totally worth every penny.
If you love taking your work with you when you travel or anytime you’re on the go, this app and the iPad pro + Apple Pencil is the answer, my friend!
It has also saved me time and a lot of frustrations especially when learning a new skill. With ProCreate and the ability to create your own digital brush or import from other creators, you will really appreciate the results of your work. Sometimes I wanted to have that hand-drawn on paper look but I’d rather want to do it digitally, I can still totally achieve that with Procreate.
Procreate, its undo feature & the ability to draw in separate layers are just what a beginner needs to resist from quitting.
Unlike Photoshop, ProCreate doesn’t give you the text tool – a minor drawback; but given its price tag compared to the former, it’s pretty understandable.
No problem though because the Phonto app is the solution. With Phonto, you can create texts and install fonts from the internet directly to the app. And for a free app, it gives you plenty of advance editing options. I just love it!
I am an Apple user through and through and for creatives like myself, I absolutely take full advantage of Apple’s Ecosystem. I use Airdrop everyday. The ability to transfer large files between all my Apple devices is a breeze. It’s super fast! No need for fiddling with cables or the usb stick.
5. A portable hard-drive
Back when I was still studying, I learned a hard lesson when I relied on my computer ( i was still a PC user then) to store and keep all my uni assignments without back up. Imagine rewriting a whole 4000 word essay after my pc crashed because I wasn’t able to retrieve my files. Totally young and naive. Now I make sure to back up all my work in two separate hard drives, just in case one stops working. It’s a pain, but I know I’m covered in the event of a crash.
If you ask why I don’t use iCloud: I have so many large files and I don’t want to pay a monthly fee. It’s also unreliable and I want to access my files without the need for internet connection.
Tip: My files are organised in folders with every file renamed to what the content is so I can easily search for it!
I use this for online file sharing such as giving away freebies on my website. It’s reliable and very easy to use. Plus they give you 2GB free. The only problem I struggle with DropBox is when downloading zip files using a Mac. The pre-installed software won’t work and you will have to install from a third party. Other than that, it’s a breeze to work with.
For creating unique graphics, editing mockups, resizing files by batch, and resizing without losing image quality – Photoshop is my go to software. I think this is a must-have for every creatives! I’d rate it 5/5 if it weren’t for the monthly subscription.
I use Pinterest as my search engine for all amazing ideas and inspirations. Pinterest has massively grown not only as a creative resource tool but also as a platform to build your business, boost your traffic and gained new audience. I love it!!
Want to learn a quick skill? Skillshare offers so many quick courses in almost all categories and fields. I learned how to use Adobe Illustrator, Botanical Painting, and SEO from them.
Some courses are blahh but there are also really good ones. It’s a lot cheaper and a whole lot faster than going to an actual class at your local college. If I want to learn a new skill, I just check out what they’ve got. And if I am too busy, I just cancel my subscription. Easy as!
10. Physical Planner
I tried planning using my phone, digital apps etc and I have tried all sorts of store bought planners but nothing works. I was still chasing time and not having enough to do everything I want until I decided to make my own planner.
Why this planner works for me will be a post on its own. I am just very thankful to this planner because I now have more time than I ever did before, I achieve my goals at a rate much much higher than before I started using this to schedule my week, and my to do lists for the week always gets done. I am on top of my finances and business cash flow, and still have enough free time left.
Time is gold and as much as we can, we want to fully maximise what we’ve got. But being a creative, we always feel like 24 hours is not enough.
My creative resource tool allows me to be extremely productive and I am a lot happier like that.
I hope you enjoy this post and have learned a thing or two from my list.
Until my next post!