Remember MacDraw? Or ClarisDraw? How about Canvas? Vector graphics ‘drawing’ was all the rage years ago and Adobe’s $500 Illustrator dominates the field.
Enter a mature and capable EazyDraw. It’s an odd vector graphics application for the Mac but works well.
EazyDraw lets you create vector art and drawings. Unlike Photoshop, which is a bitmap, pixel-by-pixel approach, vector tools allow smooth scaling at nearly any size.
The environment for drawing in EazyDraw is similar to a page layout application and provides excellent text support. EazyDraw output can be used for electronic or print documents.
The key to success for EazyDraw users flows in two directions. The first is a useful set of tools to create vector graphics. The second is file format compatiblity to export drawings to Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Keynote, and other Mac applications.
All the standard vector graphics tools are available on EazyDraw. Bezier, curved text, shadows, gradient fill, line widths, paths, patterns, layers, arrow styles, and so on.
If you’ve ever used Canvas, Illustrator, MacDraw, ClarisDraw, Freehand, or other vector graphic applications, EazyDraw will be a familiar place.
Why would you use a vector graphics application? Drawing. Particularly for drawing that needs to scale and remain precise. Drafting, desktop publishing, technical drawings, organizational charts, house plans, flow charts, and so on.
EazyDraw is compatible with Mac OS X Tiger and provides a number of Tiger’s extra graphics benefits.
The familiar palettes for Mac graphics tools are all over the place. EazyDraw is one of the few Mac graphics applications to let new users get a handle on Bezier curves, allowing both live interactive control, and manipulation of objects.
Even typeset text can be converted to Bezier curves to provide advanced type effects.
Objects such as stars, blocks, elipses and rectangles have full control of shadows, lighting, edges, gradients.
As with most mature vector graphic applications, EazyDraw also handles importation of digital photos in JPEG, PNG, BMP, etc, so photographs can be combined with vector art.
Most Mac graphic users have specific needs and Adobe’s high-priced Illustrator may be out of reach for many. Drawing requirements vary so the opportunity to try out an application over a period of time is a must.
The key to success of most vector graphic applications is the ability to export or interchange file formats. Exporting files is a breeze and everything from EPS, to GIF, BMP, ICNS, ICO, JPEG, Keynote, PDF, PICT, PNG, TIFF are supported.
EazyDraw has a native file format, so saved documents can be viewed by anyone on OS X without need to install EazyDraw or obtain another license.
This is where EazyDraw becomes an odd duck. Illustrator, Macromedia’s FreeHand, and most other applications provide a trial period with full feature acessibility.
Not so with EazyDraw. While basic drawing functions are available in the free download, EazyDraw offers a $20 Trial License. You get full use of all EazyDraw’s features for nine months.
Users taking the Trial License route for nine months also receive free updates. If you decide to keep using EazyDraw, the $20 Trial License can be applied to the $95 retail price, but only for the first two months of the Trial License period.
That’s an admittedly odd way of doing business in the age of ‘try before you buy’ but EazyDraw’s been around awhile, matured well, and maybe that works OK for the publisher.
EazyDraw was developed using Apple’s X Code environment so the application will make the transition to Intel-based Mac OS X with no problems, thereby securing your investment.
EazyDraw is an attractive vector drawing application despite the odd licensing scheme. You can still ‘try before you buy’ mostly. The interface is straightforward and simple to understand.
As with any drawing application, you need to have an understanding of how vector tools work, but they’re not difficult to learn and apply to most any drawing project. Click Here for a look at EazyDraw’s features and download link.
Carol Mary Miller
I would like to see some export in Visio format, but EazyDraw remains more advanced than the old MacDraw and ClarisDraw.
There’s such a substantial difference in price between EazyDraw and Illustrator. It’s surprising there’s not 20 applications in this space. One of my favorites is the free Microsoft Expression.
EazyDraw is not MacDraft. One is a drawing application used primarily for graphics, while the other is what it says it is; a drafting applications. There are similarities, though.
Tera Jean Patricks
I used the original MacDraw from 1985 (see how old I am?) long before Illustrator and Freehand. EazyDraw fills out the low end quite well. You get many of the same basic tools without the expense. I used Canvas for many years (up to about version 8) before they ‘drifted…’