Digital Creatives – Five Great Programs

Being a Digital Creative is a great way to earn an income, either from home as a side hustle or “Gig” or in an office as a team member.  Creative jobs are in high demand right now.  Some of the hottest jobs available are proof that creativity and technology work well together.

What exactly does a Digital Director do? A Digital Creative or “Director” determines the creative vision of a brand or project and manifests that vision through digital, print, and film installations.

Creative Directors can easily make over 100K a year.

Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics suggests that creative jobs could get a major hiring boost in the years ahead, as jobs for advertising, promotions, and marketing managers are expected to grow 10% through 2026.

Surveying advertising and marketing hiring managers, research found that creative jobs and tech jobs are becoming even more intertwined, with employers actively seeking expertise in mobile and UX design, along with interactive art direction.

Cool Job Titles … (a little laughter here)

Chief Robot Whisperer.

Director of First Impressions.

Culture Operations Manager.

Software Ninjaneer.

Digital Overlord.

Director of Storytelling.

What is the highest-paying creative job?

Creative director.

Art director.

Senior graphic designer.

Animator.

Game designer.

Web developer.

Marketing designer.

Krita

Krita is another professional-grade drawing program that is completely free and open-source. You can create conceptual art, comics, and complex illustrations using many of its powerful tools.

In case you are not aware, Krita is one of the best Linux apps and many professionals use it for digital painting.

Pros

Free and open-source

Create art and comics

Supports Raster graphics

Advance layers

Cons

Tools can be overwhelming

Download (Free)

Concepts

Concepts is one of the few Procreate alternatives that offers a similar level of touchscreen controls on an infinite canvas. It’s specially optimized for the Surface Pen, Surface Pro X and other ARM64 based Windows 10 devices. The best part is that if you have a touchscreen Windows laptop then you can access unique tools like the color dial. Further, Concepts offers almost zero latency just like Procreate.

You get a huge canvas where you can create illustrations, sketches, and design plans. Besides that, Concepts supports tilt and pressure modes which will help you while sketching intricate details with high precision. And just like other drawing apps, you get many kinds of pencils, brushes, and pens.

There is also this different canvas type where you can select the background from various textures and preset papers. If you are using an active stylus like Wacom (or another Apple pencil alternative), you can leverage its velocity feature for flexible sketching and drawing.

Pros

Optimized for Surface devices

Flexible brushes

Best for illustrations and sketches

Unique Dial

Cons

Experience differs on other Windows laptops

Download (Free, Paid plan starts at $4.99/month)

MediBang Paint

Create Comics and Manga with MediBang Paint. The app offers various tools including over 800 tones/backgrounds, brushes, over 50 brushes, and 20 fonts style. It’s a simple and powerful tool for people who are just getting started with their comics or manga creator’s journey and want a tool that can help them learn and improve.  The app also offers cloud syncing across platforms. To sum up, for budding and professional comic creators, MediBang Paint can be a great tool, more so when it’s completely free to use.

Pros

Best for Manga and Comic creators

More than 50 brushes

Over 800 backgrounds

Beginner-friendly

Cons

None

Download (Free)

Inkscape

Inkscape is on this list mainly because it’s completely free and open-source. You can use Inkscape for vector drawing on your Windows 10 laptop. Plus you get pro tools like flyout, anchor, and smart navigation.  The program is quite advanced and comes with all the controls that you need for creating complex paintings, arts, logos, and more. Further, you have access to tools like Bezier and spiro curves, layers, color profiles, and a powerful text tool. To conclude, Inkscape may not be the very best in terms of raster graphics editing, but it’s a solid program for vector designing.

Pros

Free and open-source

Advance color profiles and layers

Powerful text tool

Cons

Not best for raster graphics editing

Download (Free)

Sketchbook

Sketchbook is a widely popular program for digital drawing, and it’s recommended as the best Procreate alternative for Windows 10. The best part is that this powerful program is now available for free to everyone. You just need to sign up for a free account and you can use the fully-featured version of Sketchbook on Windows 10 without any limitations. It runs phenomenally well in full-screen mode with a huge canvas having multiple tools, and layers.

You can even use an active stylus on this app, and it supports palm rejection too, in case you have a touchscreen Windows 10 device. Simply put, Sketchbook by Autodesk does not need much introduction when it comes to drawing and sketching.

Pros

Free to use

Supports Palm Rejection

Infinite canvas

Supports third-party stylus

Cons

Requires learning curve

Download (Free)

Download (Pro $19.99)

italki – Teach or Learn

italki is the best language tutor platform because there are teachers for every budget, it’s a safe and secure platform, and it has a lot of free features to enhance your lessons. Practicing with a native speaker is the best way to learn a language, and italki is the best place to find them!

Is the italki worth it?

italki is a legitimate language learning platform with a Trustpilot score of 4.8 out of 5. Founded in 2007, they have grown to become one of the world’s largest marketplaces for online language teachers, with 5 million students from 100+ countries being taught by over 5,000 italki teachers and tutors.

Teach

To apply as a teacher, please follow these steps:

  1. Submit an application on https://teach.italki.com via only by a computer or laptop. Applicants will be notified of the result within 10 business days.
  2. Complete the following onboarding process within 15 calendar days upon receiving a pre-approval email.
  3. Upload your identity document (How to pass ID verification?)
  4. Watch the Teacher Success tutorial videos
  5. Complete the guided tutorials to set up your account
  6. Pass the quizzes.

After you have completed the onboarding process and finished setting up your account you are ready to go!  Before you apply, please check which teacher type you want to apply for. You can only choose one teacher type.

Difference between Professional Teachers and Community Tutors

If you first apply to become a Community Tutor, you can later upgrade to Professional Teacher

What are the technology requirements for teachers?

  • Avatar italki
  • Stable internet connection
  • Video communication tools

You can use one or more of the following video platforms to conduct lessons.

  • italki Classroom

italki Classroom is the default option and can be accessed by clicking the “Enter Classroom” button on the lesson page. Easy to use: Adding your students as friends are not required. italki Classroom will connect teachers and students automatically.

When a student requests a lesson with you, italki will provide you and your student with the contact details (such as Skype account/ID) or a link to italki Classroom or Zoom.  When a student books a lesson, they are required to select a communication tool they want to use for the lesson. italki will offer the student the option of selecting italki Classroom by default, the teacher does not need to select it.

For more information about setting up and using communication tools, click here.

Microphone and webcam

You must have a microphone and a webcam. Headphones are also recommended.  Using an external camera or microphone typically provides better audio/video quality than using your device’s built-in camera or microphone.

If you need help with preparing an introduction video, please check this page: How do I record and upload a video to italki?

Once you’ve become a teacher, you can update your profile such as your intro video, adding another teaching language, etc.

italki Classroom Guidance for teachers

italki Classroom is a video communication tool that is available to all italki students both on the italki website and the italki mobile app.

Check the video introduction of italki Classroom here.

The benefits of italki Classroom include:

  • Full-featured: File sharing and screen-sharing.
  • Convenient: App download is not required on PC as italki Classroom is a built-in italki interface. italki Classroom can be accessed by clicking the “Enter Classroom” button on the lesson page.
  • Easy to use: Adding your students as friends are not required. italki Classroom will connect teachers and students automatically.
  • Fair: italki can track system records in case there is a dispute over a lesson problem, ie. absence and being late.

For further information click here.

How long is an italki lesson?

Each teacher provides 60min single lessons. In addition, teachers can choose whether to provide 30min, 45min, or 90min lessons and Lesson Packages.

How do I get paid and what’s the withdrawal fee?

italki works with different Payment Providers to help you withdraw your money in USD. The main Payment Providers we use are:

PayPal – https://www.paypal.com  

Hyperwallet – a service provided by PayPal

Payoneer – https://www.payoneer.com  

The minimum withdrawal amount is $30 USD in italki Credits.

Although italki does NOT charge any fee for your withdrawals, you may be subject to different fees depending on which method you use. Please be aware that different countries may have different transaction fees charged by the respective payment provider.

The chart below shows typical fees for each payment provider. Please consult your payment provider’s website for your particular country to see what fees apply to you.

For details about when you will get paid, please check the article: I’ve submitted my withdrawal request, when will I receive my payment.

As we have teachers in different time zones, we calculate the first and last date of the month according to UTC (+0) (Coordinated Universal Time).

For example, if you submit a withdrawal request via PayPal or Payoneer on the 12th, we will collect the request on the 15th (withdrawal deadline). Payment will be sent anytime between the 16th and 26th.

Learn

italki encourages pricing competition which means you can find some unbelievably cheap lessons on there if you use the pricing filter. This is positive if you don’t have much money to learn, but also negative because it has been known to lead to exploitation.

Support