Looking for a creative way to manipulate your photos? How about turning them into works of art? There are a few different apps that you can use to either turn your photo into a sketch or to take a photo that looks like a drawing. You can then use your digital sketches to create greeting cards, artwork for hanging, or even personalized gifts like pillows, blankets, or mugs.
How to turn a photo into a drawing
Playing around with different photo-to-sketch converter apps isn’t the worst way to pass the time, but if you’d rather just get to it, we’ve narrowed the process down a bit for you by selecting the best apps for the job. Here’s how to turn a photo into a sketch or line drawing using Painnt and Prisma, which are both easy to use.
Convert your photo into a line drawing with Painnt
Painnt is a simple app with more than 2,000 art filters, 90 of which are sketch effects. The Painnt app is fun and easy to use, and many of the filters are included for free with your initial download. Premium filters can be accessed for a subscription fee of $9.99 per year. Here’s how to use Painnt to turn your favorite photos into incredible sketches:
- Download the Painnt app and open it on your iPhone.
- Scroll through the massive array of filters and choose one you like. The newest filters will be available at the top of the screen, followed by the “Free only today” section. From there, you can scroll through filters by genres, such as faces, modern, mosaics, nature, sketch, and more.
- Tap Photo Library to open your photos and choose the one you want to convert to a drawing.
- Tap Done to convert your photo to a sketch or drawing.
- An editing screen will open up, allowing you to use sliders to adjust transparency, brightness, contrast, saturation, and more.
- When you are happy with the results, tap the download icon. Then choose whether you want to share your creation on social media or save it to your device. Unless you decide to purchase the premium subscription, your drawing will be saved with a small watermark in the corner.
Turn a picture into a drawing with Prisma
Prisma is another app that is affordable and easy to use. By affordable, we actually mean free, but you will have to pay a subscription fee for premium filters. The Prisma filters are based on the works of famous artists like Pablo Picasso, Edvard Munch, or Salvador Dali, and a new, free Prisma filter is released every day. Here’s how to use Prisma to convert your photo to a drawing.
- Download the Prisma app and open it on your iPhone.
- Your photo library will open up inside the Prisma app. Choose the photo you want to edit.
- There are 12 free artistic filters you can apply to your photo, plus several more premium filters. Choose one to have it applied to your photo.
- Tap the tuning icon to make further adjustments to your photo.
- Tap the checkmark. Then tap the share icon.
- Choose whether you want to share your photo or save it to your device.
- Your drawing will be saved without a watermark.
How to take a picture that looks like a drawing
Another way to experiment with photo-to-drawing conversion is to use apps that will automatically turn your photo into a sketch when you take a photo. This method gives you instant gratification and is great for easy social sharing. Use either your iPhone Messages app or Photo Lab to make it happen.
Turn your photo into a drawing with Messages filters
Did you know that there is a hidden filter within your iPhone’s Messages app that allows you to take photos and selfies and then turn them into sketches that look like comic book drawings? It’s true! Here’s how to access them.
- On your iPhone, open the Messages app and type the name of the recipient that you want to send your drawing to.
- Tap the camera icon to create your image.
- Before you snap a photo, tap Effects and then the filter icon, which looks like three connected circles in different colors.
- Scroll through the filters at the bottom of the screen and choose Comic Book.
- Frame your shot and tap the shutter button.
- Tap the arrow icon to send your photo drawing.
iOS comes with more photography tools you might be unaware about, so check out our guide to photo editing in iPhone Photos to see what else you can do without third-party apps.
Turn your photo into a sketch with Photo Lab filters
There are a few different apps that will let you apply your drawing filter within their camera screen before you take a photo. We love Photo Lab because it is free and easy to use. With the free version, you can apply a variety of artistic features, from simple sketches to elaborate scenes that will totally make over your photo. The downside is that the free version includes ads as well as a watermark on your finished photo. The pro version is $4.99 per month or $9.99 per year.
Here’s how to use Photo Lab to take a photo and turn it into a drawing:
- Download Photo Lab and open it on your iPhone.
- Scroll through the screen of available filters. The premium filters will have the word Pro in the corner. Tap the filter you want to use.
- Tap the camera icon to open the Photo Lab camera.
- Frame your shot and tap the shutter.
- Tap Use Photo if you are happy with the image. Otherwise, tap Retake.
- The next screen will allow you to crop your photo or change the orientation. Tap the arrow when you are finished.
- A processing screen will appear, followed by your finished sketch. From here, you can tap the + icon to add text. Some filters also allow you to modify the results or turn your photo into a GIF.
- Finally, tap the share icon in the upper-right corner to save your photo or share it on social media.
- If you have the free version, you can remove the watermark by tapping it. A pop-up menu will appear, asking if you want to watch a short sponsored video to have the watermark removed. Tap yes to watch the video. Now you can save your photo-to-drawing without the watermark.
Your iPhone can do much more than take pretty photos. Get creative with unique apps that will allow you to turn your picture into a drawing, painting, or other digital work of art. The opportunities are endless, and the process is totally addictive.