Ink for iOS is as minimal as a drawing app can be, but it’s great fun

Ink for iOS is as minimal as a drawing app can be, but it’s great fun

Sometimes it feels like the minimalist app design movement can go a bit far. I was so torn over super-simplified iOS writing app Pop last year, that I interviewed its designer about whether he was taking the whole concept of minimalism to unnecessary extremes. Well, his latest app might have won me around to the whole idea.

Ink comes from the same team as Pop but focuses on simulating the experience of drawing with ink on a plain paper pad. Controls-wise, there’s not much to it. You simply put your finger to the screen and draw. Pull up from the bottom of the screen and the current page is ‘torn off’ and stored in your iOS Camera Roll. The only concession to a traditional interface is when you double-tap the drawer icon to reveal a set of controls that allow you to share your current drawing via email, Twitter or Facebook, clear the page and other standard options.

Ink iPad 1
Ink iPad 2

Aside from clearing the page completely, there’s no erase option here – you are working with ink after all. At first glance, the lack of options may seem frustrating compared to the likes of Paper by Fifty Three, which combines a beautiful drawing experience with a range of tools crafted into an easy-to-learn, subtle interface. That would be to miss the point though; Ink perfectly reproduces the simple joy of sketching away on a pad of paper, something I spent many hours doing as a child.

Sadly, the screenshot below sums up the height of my childhood drawing prowess – cartoon character Count Duckula wearing a cowboy hat. I clearly haven’t got much better since then, but I still found using Ink an engrossing experience.

Ink drawing
Ink drawing 2

Ink is compatible with the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad and is free.

➤ Ink 

Image credit: Thinkstock

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