Inkscape is professional quality vector graphics software which runs on Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. It is used by design professionals and hobbyists worldwide, for creating a wide variety of graphics such as illustrations, icons, make professional logos, diagrams, maps, and web graphics. Inkscape uses the W3C open standard SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) as its native format and is free and open-source software.
Inkscape has sophisticated drawing tools with capabilities comparable to Adobe Illustrator, CorelDRAW, and Xara Xtreme. It can import and export various file formats, including SVG, AI, EPS, PDF, PS, and PNG. It has a comprehensive feature set, a simple interface, multi-lingual support and is designed to be extensible; users can customize Inkscape’s functionality with add-ons.
The user-friendly interface offers quick access to standard and professional drawing tools, such as zoom, freehand lines, text objects, path editing (by nodes) and object tweaking (by sculpting or painting). Evidently, it is possible to perform tweaks for each function.
Inkscape works with numerous popular file types, such as PNG, EPS, EMF, SWG, WMF, and vector-based formats. You can import external drawings, edit document metadata, locate text objects, duplicate items, edit XML code, switch to full-screen mode for an enhanced workspace, work with multiple layers, as well as manipulate objects (e.g. flip, rotate, filters), to name just a few notable features.
- Drawing: pencil tool (freehand drawing with simple paths), pen tool (creating Bézier curves and straight lines), calligraphy tool (freehand drawing using filled paths representing calligraphic strokes)
- Shape tools: rectangles (may have rounded corners), ellipses (includes circles, arcs, segments), stars/polygons (can be rounded and/or randomized), spirals
- Text tool (multi-line text, full on-canvas editing)
- Embedded bitmaps (with a command to create and embed bitmaps of selected objects)
- Clones (“live” linked copies of objects), including a tool to create patterns and arrangements of clones
- Transformations (moving, scaling, rotating, skewing), both interactively and by specifying exact numeric values
- Z-order operations (raising and lowering)
- Grouping objects (“select in group” without ungrouping, or “enter the group” making it a temporary layer)
- Layers (lock and/or hide individual layers, rearrange them, etc; layers can form a hierarchical tree)
- Alignment and distribution commands