Visual artists have been using the digital environment as a means of creation for decades. Even those who still prefer the more traditional approaches of pen-and-paper or brush-and-canvas sometimes dabble with digital tools and find ways to incorporate them in their work.

Surely, most of the programs used by artists are already well-known industry standards. However, once in a while there may come an app that, even if it won’t change the status quo, could become a useful helper to those keen to try it.

Concept was developed by those who understand that no piece of visual art is created without, well, a concept. This is often represented by a sketch that looks by no means perfect, but is expressive enough to give the viewer a good idea of what the final product will look like.

Think of fashion designer sketches or story boards that are so important to movie directors. Typically, these are done using pen-and-paper, but Concept presents itself as a digital tool that could replace the physical approach.

While Concept works best on a graphic tablet and with a digital pen, even with a mouse the drawing process feels smoother and more natural than in other drawing programs. The different pens and brushes behave as they should in real life and mimic the actual feeling of sketching.

Another great feature is the beautifully designed palette that has tones and nuances arranged so you can easily tell which colors go well together. Like in other advanced graphic design programs, you work with layers, but Concept has a less rigid interface that gives you more creative freedom. After you’re done with a layer, you can easily move it around to make room for the next drawing or try to fit it with another piece.

The fact that Concept comes initially as a free app with a few basic functionalities is also good news for artists. When understanding how powerful this seemingly light program truly is, most will agree that the upgrades are worth the price.