Top 3 Free MS Paint Alternative Programs for Ubuntu and Other Linux

3 min

Here we list the top 3 MS Paint alternative drawing programs for Ubuntu and other Linux distros.

For quick drawing and editing images – MS Paint-type applications are essential. Here are three of them which are similar and can be used for quick drawing/editing in Linux and Ubuntu systems. These 3 MS Paint alternative drawing programs are best fit for general users and professionals who need a quick and fast edit on images or create drawings.

Best MS Paint Alternative Drawing Programs

1. Drawing

Drawing is a free and open-source image editing program for Linux desktops, primarily targeted to GNOME desktops and also compatible with Cinnamon/elementary OS. This simple and free app is designed for basic image editing, adding text and shapes in images, and many more. It is not on par with GIMP or any advanced editor for which it is not built.

Drawing Program - Free drawing program
Drawing Program

Image Tools available in Drawing

Here are the tools available for Drawing:

  • Pencil
  • Rectangle
  • Circle & oval
  • Polygon
  • Free shape
  • Line & arrow
  • Arc
  • Insert text
  • Selection (rectangle, free, or by colour)
  • Colour picker
  • Paint
  • Crop
  • Flip
  • Scale
  • Rotate
  • Saturate

Download and Install

Drawing is available as a standalone Flatpak executable with all dependencies. You can download the Flatpak executable below after ensuring that your Linux distribution is set up for Flatpak packages.

2. Pinta

Pinta – as the tagline says, it makes painting simple. Available for Linux, Windows, and Mac – Pinta is free to download and use and armed with some basic and advanced features. You can draw shapes, edit images, add text, add effects and adjustments to the images, and many more.

Pinta - Free drawing program

Features of Pinta at a glance

  • Easy drawing tools for drawing freehand, lines, rectangles, ellipses, and more.
  • Includes over 35 adjustments and effects for your image
  • Multilingual
  • Full Undo history – so you can’t make mistakes.
  • Multiple layer support
  • Docked and floating window support.

Download and Install

For Ubuntu, Linux Mint and its derivatives, you can install Pinta via PPA as below:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:pinta-maintainers/pinta-stable
sudo apt update
sudo apt install pinta

In addition, it is also available as a Flatpak package. Set up your system to use Flatpak via Flathub and install it using the following command:

flatpak install com.github.PintaProject.Pinta

For other download options, including Windows – visit this page.

3. Pencil2D

Pencil2D is a free and open-source project for easy drawing and is primarily dedicated to hand-drawing animations. It is available for both Windows and Linux. If you are an artist or designing quick comics/animations – Pencil2D is a perfect fit for you.

Pencil2D - Free drawing program

Here are some of its features:

Features of Pencil2D

  • Lightweight and easy to use, you can focus on animating and not what button to hit next.
  • Seamlessly switch between raster and vector workflows, allowing you to sketch, ink & paint on the go.
  • Pencil2D is cross-platform and runs on Windows, macOS, Linux & FreeBSD.
  • Pencil2D is completely open-source and free to use, even commercially!
A quick glance on Pencil2D

Download and Install

The good news is Pencil2D is available for Windows (almost all versions 7, XP, Vista, and 10), Linux, and Mac. Head over to the below link for download for your operating system. Linux versions are the AppImage executables.

Wrapping Up

No doubt that MS Paint is one of the best simple drawing programs. But these free and open-source apps are good and, in some cases, better than MS Paint. I hope this list of the top 3 free MS Paint alternative programs helps you in your workflow.


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