Professional Creative Graphics Market Sees an Alternative

Editor’s Note: The following sponsored content is brought to you courtesy of Corel, one of HOW’s trusted Partners.

There’s no doubt the demand for graphic design is rising, in large part, due to companies communicating more and more visually. According to this report on Ibisworld.com,?industry revenue for graphic designers in the US was more than 14 billion in 2018.

With graphic design booming, it can be argued that the market has never been more ready for a new professional graphics software option. John Falsetto, Senior Director of Products for CorelDRAW, shares his thoughts on the market and how Corel’s new Mac software suite fits.

You’ve stated that you believe the market needs an alternative. To get us started, what exactly does that mean to you?

We believe that no matter what area you’re looking at, it’s always a good thing to have choice and competition. While Corel has been serving the needs of professional graphics users on Windows for more than 30 years, Mac users have really only had one option for much too long. But now that CorelDRAW Graphics Suite is available on Windows, Mac and Web, we’re really excited to be providing alternative tools to the professional design market, regardless of platform.

First and foremost, we’re giving designers a true contender in terms of product quality and functionality across platforms. Until now, there was really only one option if you wanted features like professional output, support for print standards, and industry-leading vector graphics on your Mac. Not to mention that CorelDRAW Graphics Suite also offers unique and innovative tools that can’t be found anywhere else, like the first AI-powered vector drawing tools, the ability to create stunning symmetrical designs without a plug-in, and more. From a tech perspective, CorelDRAW also stands out because we have a unique offering designed specifically for macOS. Unlike other apps that offer a standardized experience across platforms, we’ve built our apps independently so they can take full advantage of the platforms they were designed for. Feature sets may be virtually identical, but the way the apps look and behave on macOS and Windows are different.

Beyond features, we’re also giving users a choice in how they buy and access their software. Unlike other graphic design software vendors, Corel provides users a choice in licensing their software. If you want a subscription, no problem. But if you don’t want to be tied to a subscription and prefer a perpetual license, we’ve got that too. And we’re committed to offering it at an attractive value.

Why did Corel wait so long to re-introduce a Mac version of CorelDRAW Graphics Suite?

Corel offered a Mac version of CorelDRAW Graphics Suite more than 15 years ago and you could say it was a learning experience for us. Our previous Mac version relied too heavily on our Windows background — some went so far as to criticize it as a ‘port’ of our Windows software. In retrospect, it really didn’t do the Mac experience justice.

But that didn’t mean we weren’t thinking about creating a version of CorelDRAW for macOS. We had always thought about coming back to the Mac, and we would regularly hear from people asking us if we’d return. We were definitely interested, but we wanted to make sure we did it right.

So we spent a lot of time thinking about it, researching it. And when we realized the opportunity was very strong, we knew the timing was right. We also knew we absolutely needed to create a unique product built from the ground up for the platform and its users. And that’s exactly what we’ve done.

So specifically, what does built for macOS really mean?

Artwork created in CorelDRAW by Steffen Craft

When deciding to come back to the Mac with CorelDRAW Graphics Suite 2019, we made a key promise to ourselves – that we would be true to the Mac operating system just as we already were with Windows. It couldn’t just mirror our Windows platform. It had to be an authentic, native software and design experience. Mac users needed to feel right at home when jumping into CorelDRAW Graphics Suite 2019. This includes everything from menus and buttons for easy navigation on a Mac to TouchBar support on a MacBook Pro. If you’re looking for software that truly takes advantage of the things you love about the Mac environment, you may just find that CorelDRAW was made for you.

Why doesn’t CorelDRAW Graphics Suite follow a subscription-only format?

As I mentioned, one of the key goals for Corel and CorelDRAW over the years has been to provide choice for our users. And that shows up in the way they use the application, in how they can get things done. But it also shows up in how they get the application — in effect, whether they subscribe or purchase. Unlike other vendors who made a hard shift to subscription a few years back, we’ve left perpetual licenses as an option. If you want a perpetual software license, Corel gives you that option.

And is that something you’ve encountered – customers saying they’d rather own a product license for the long term?

Yeah, absolutely. It’s actually kind of remarkable. It’s great having both options because for some businesses, it does make sense to have a subscription model from an accounting perspective. But it always amazes me how many people dislike the subscription model, and love the fact they can actually still buy a license of the product. The fact that we can give customers that bit of freedom is important.

What would you say are the 3 key advantages of CorelDRAW over other graphics software?

Going back to the question about subscription vs. perpetual licensing models, before you even start using it, you get an advantage when you can choose how to ‘acquire’ the software.

But more importantly it’s about how you use the product. There are a lot of different ways you can design with CorelDRAW. There’s a concept I like to think of when it comes to CorelDRAW Graphics Suite and that’s “Create once. Output everywhere.” While there are a lot of ways to get something created, once that creation is done, you can use it in so many ways. Whether that’s for print, web, large format printing, or even niche markets like direct to garment or engraving. There’s just so many different final products you can achieve with CorelDRAW Graphics Suite.

Another big advantage I would say is around ease of learning and ease of use. Time and time again we hear from users how easy our product is to learn compared to other professional options out there. So that really provides a good head start for people who are getting into software and design. And for people who are experienced with CorelDRAW — the usability helps them get through to the finish line much faster.

So those choice and flexibility themes really show up everywhere — it’s an advantage at the acquisition phase and also in how to get work done.

It’s interesting when you mention that range of what you can create and how designers are using the software.

Oh yes, definitely. The suite is used by an extremely wide range of graphic artists. Whether you’re into designing caricatures, logos, or in the midst of creating a website, you have the capability to work seamlessly and get a head start because of all the tools, learning materials, and sample projects we’ve included with the program. I personally love the different illustrations and even fine art that CorelDRAW users create. Take for example Elena Blagodarova. Her pieces are more caricature-like, and her subjects really draw you in and are captivating to look at.

Artwork created in CorelDRAW by Elena Blagodarova

Another artist, David Vicente creates work that takes on a classic, pin-up style reminiscent of the looks that were popular in the 1940s, but with a modern edge. These are just two of many users, but it goes without saying that I’m always blown away by the range of artwork designers create in our suite.

Artwork created in CorelDRAW by David Vincente

Thanks for the intro, John. Anything else you’d like to add?

I suppose at this point, I’d like to give the software a shameless plug and let your readers know that we have free trials for both macOS and Windows available at www.coreldraw.com. If you’re curious to see the other comprehensive and professional design software options out there, we hope you’ll give it a try.

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