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Procreate Ideas for 2022: What’s Popular on Procreate?

Passionate about Procreate? You’re not alone! Read on to discover the top Procreate ideas and trends for 2022.

Posted 16 Nov 2021
Procreate Trends

Over the last few years, Procreate has risen in popularity. Thanks in part to the growth of platforms such as TikTok, as well as the Procreate app’s accessibility, designers, illustrators and digital artists all around the world are now using Procreate to produce incredible work, resulting in an exciting evolution for digital art.

Procreate combines the tactile feel of traditional art – recreating tools such as pens, paint and pencils – with all the benefits of digital – from quick deletion to instant sharing. Offering hundreds of resources at your fingertips and unparalleled usability, it’s easy to see why it’s become a go-to creative tool. And as the app continues to reach new users, some exciting ideas, techniques and trends have begun to emerge.

If you’re looking for info on how to draw on Procreate, how to blend on Procreate, or even how to animate on Procreate, head over to our handy Procreate Guide for all the tips and tools you need to become a Procreate Pro. Otherwise, read on to discover some of the top Procreate ideas to try in 2022 and beyond… 

1. Join the Growing Procreate Community

Passionate about Procreate? You’re not alone! Since launching in 2011, the digital illustration app has attracted a global fanbase across a range of platforms. Hashtags like #procreatechallenge and #proceatetips are huge on TikTok, with tens of thousands of fans watching videos from Procreate professionals and hobbyists alike. Covering everything from creating animations in Procreate to drawing portraits, the community is constantly coming up with new and inventive ways to use this popular design tool. 

“The Procreate community is huge and global. There’s artists making everything from hyperrealistic portraits to animations, fonts, and children’s books,” explains Procreate Illustrator, Ellen. “Art of all kinds is freely shared and the community will show up in droves to give praise, support and feedback. The talent and art showcased – all created using Procreate – is truly inspiring for other artists to keep making and improving.” 

It’s fair to say the talent in the Procreate community is pretty incredible. Just look at Envato author Pixelbuddha for example. After starting out in UI and flat design, the team behind Pixelbuddha soon pivoted into Procreate due to the app’s usability, handy features and appeal for creators. They’ve now employed two full-time illustrators dedicated to creating customized brushes – which you can access via Pixelbuddha’s portfolio on Envato Elements

If you’re looking for more inspiration from the Procreate community, check out the 30 must-watch tutorials for Procreate collated by our friends over at Envato Tuts+.

2. Check out Procreate 5X [& 5.2]

Procreate 5X has already been embraced by the Procreate community and features a number of new tools designed to enhance users’ creative experience. 

  • Pencil Filters allow artists to turn any brush into a filter and paint straight onto their canvas.
  • Palette Capture enables creators to design custom palettes from the colors that inspire them.
  • The Snapping feature makes it easier than ever to move, transform or resize content while keeping objects proportionate.

All in all, Procreate 5X gives users more creative control and finesse over their end result. So it’s no surprise that the 5.2 update, which promises a plethora of even more new tools and features, is being highly anticipated by the Procreate community. 

“The recent Procreate’s 5X update has given artists more tools that allow us to work in a more precise way,” says Jessica Marie , Procreate Pet Portrait Artist. “I particularly like using the new snapping feature and being able to instantly create colour pallets from reference photos.” 

3. Try Your Hand at Hand Lettering

Script and calligraphy style fonts have always been popular among artists and designers. Their artistic and versatile nature make them perfect fonts for Procreate, where we’ve recently seen hand lettering used in a more casual, creative way. With more and more people testing out Procreate’s animation capabilities – we expect to see an increase in the popularity of animated typography to add dynamics to stationery designs, too. 

A great example of using hand lettering to create character is UK magazine Radio Times. On this issue, the magazine’s art team utilized scrawled handwritten fonts for a casual and approachable effect, making it look as though someone has simply doodled on the front cover. Hand lettering can also be used to create something smart and sophisticated, like this wedding invite-inspired font from Envato Elements author designova. Perfectly suited to logos and promotional materials, the pack includes heaps of looping letters and stylistic alternatives. 

“The main areas people are searching for tutorials for Procreate are brushes and hand lettering,” explains Sharon Archer-Thomas, Tuts+ Design & Illustration Editor. “The popularity of calligraphy and script style fonts for Procreate have always been big, but now with the inclusion of animation in Procreate, there’s increased interest in learning to animate.”

If you want to try creating beautiful calligraphy and hand lettering in Procreate, watch our helpful tutorial to walk through the ​​settings, techniques and brushes you’ll need to get started. 

4. Experiment with Animation

Procreate’s increasingly popular animation tool – Animation Assist – enables designers and illustrators to quickly and easily bring their creations to life with minimal time and effort. Producing everything from full-blown action reels to small, sequential changes to simple illustrations, this feature makes even rookie animators look like animasters. 

These four feline characters were all illustrated and animated by Tina Siuda using the Procreate app. By adding a few simple movements to the shaded lion manes, she brilliantly brings these cute stick figure animals to life. 

The Envato Elements library contains plenty of add-ons perfect for use in animation. For example, you could start by sketching a few figures using these pencil-textured Procreate Brushes by pixelbuddha_graphic and then add a few moving parts to see them leap off the page.

If you’re interested in using animation in Procreate to create attention-grabbing text animations, this tutorial offers a step-by-step guide to the process – from creating a custom canvas to making a clipping mask and adding accents.

5. Take Part In Art Challenges

Art challenges have become a go-to way for Procreate artists and designers to draw attention to their work. Whether it’s simple a daily practice to get you into a routine, or an excuse to show off custom brushes or existing artworks, art challenges can be a great way for artists to put themselves out there – and more often than not, the creative community shows up in force to give praise, support and feedback.

“There’s heaps of art challenges out there and they are popular amongst artists who use Procreate,” says artist Jessica Marie. “Digital painting can certainly help you keep up with the daily demands of a drawing challenge!

Check out this October edition of Procreate’s Art Mash, which shares three Halloween prompts and invites people to interpret them however they like before posting their work on Instagram using the hashtag ‘artmash’. 

6. Create Time-lapse Videos

Time-lapse videos are another trend allowing Procreate artists to showcase their skills and give viewers a behind-the-scenes glimpse of their creative process. Providing insights and inspiration, these sped-up videos allow artists to further engage with their audiences and show how their work comes to life. 

On the other side of the fence, if you’re still learning how to illustrate, watching these time-lapse videos can act as a tutorial, showing you how an artwork was created from start to finish. For example, artist Jarom Vogel transports viewers from rough early sketches to a full-color carnival in his piece animal dance party

While it might seem overwhelming, it actually couldn’t be simpler to get onboard with this trend. In fact, Procreate has a feature allowing users to record automatic time-lapse video as you create. Like this YouTube video by artist Mary Dimary, that shows her neon portrait taking shape in a matter of minutes. 

“Automatic Time-lapse videos of your creation allow you to engage further with your audience with behind the scenes replays,” says Ellen. “As an artist, it’s far easier than traditional mediums where you’d need a camera set up to achieve the same result. If you are learning how to illustrate, watching replays can take an artist’s daunting digital masterpiece and show you step by step how it was created.”

7. Try Bullet Journaling

Bullet journaling has become a huge trend over the past year, and is practiced by many people around the world. Encapsulating everything from to-do lists for organization to a quickfire sketch pad when inspiration strikes, bullet journaling is super popular among creatives. 

And while many still reach for a well-worn notebook, others have found Procreate to be the perfect medium to record their day-to-day ideas and itineraries. We expect to see this popular practice continue to grow on the Procreate platform. 

If you want to install and use fonts to give your bullet journal an extra edge, we’ve put together a useful tutorial to help you do just that. 

8. Get Artistic with Authentic Brush Styles

Offering everything from pencil and watercolor to oil and spray paint effects, Procreate serves up a digital canvas that artists can’t get enough of. Many skilled brush creators are increasingly developing brushes that replicate real-world art methods, creating some super realistic results. For example, this acrylic-style painting by Andrey Malykh perfectly replicates the smeared, scrapped and swirled texture of paint, creating an incredible 3D effect. 

“Digital art is about making the viewer unsure whether the art is real or digital,” explains Teela from Every Tuesday. “When it comes to mimicking traditional paint mediums, digital watercolor, gouache and acrylic are some of the most popular.” 

There are plenty of tools to help artists achieve an analogue result with this digital tool, such as these Procreate Watercolour Brushes by melrodicq, which include realistic paint brushes, textures, splatters, blenders and pencils.

From customisable brushes and textures to how-to tutorials and explainer videos, Envato Elements has everything you need to create better digital illustrations and artworks in Procreate. So what are you waiting for? Start creating today! 

And that does it for the Procreate ideas for 2022! For more, check out the A-Z of Procreate tips and tricks on Envato Tuts+, try out these 15 Best Procreate Brushes for Illustration, or read up on How to Create Procreate Brushes with Envato Author Pixelbuddha

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