I'd like to start working with vector graphics instead of normal image files for my app icons. As screen resolutions get higher and higher, so do file sizes. I'd like an OS X app that supports creating and editing vector graphics.


  • Support editing and creating vector graphics
  • Be able to export to a .png of various sizes
  • Run natively, not in an emulator

It would always be nice for it to be free, but I'm okay with paid options.

5 Answers 5


Try Inkscape. It's free and open source.

  • It can edit and create vector graphics (in SVG form).
  • It can export as .png (shift+cmd+e or File -> Export Bitmap...)
  • It's cross-platform.
  • could you add a screenshot and maybe tell us a bit about how it feels like? How is the interface? Is it intuitive / complicated? What about other features that you used and felt where great about this tool? Commented Feb 9, 2014 at 17:36
  • My experiences with Inkscape on macs make it seem a lot buggier than it is on windows and linux, possible since it has to use XQuartz to run the discontinued (on mac) x11. Commented Feb 25, 2014 at 10:56
  • It's not native, it uses XQuartz, and therefore it doesn't support HiDPI (aka Retina) displays. Commented Feb 28, 2016 at 9:30

Sketch ($79.99, on the Mac App Store) is a new Mac application for vector graphics. Because it's a native Mac application, it runs very smoothly and supports Mac-specific things like Retina displays. The fact that it's a young application has two sides: on one side, it's made with (modern) usability in mind, so it much more user friendly than most other vector applications; on the other side, it has some bugs.

Sketch screenshot

  • "PDF, EPS and SVG importing and exporting supported".
  • "Artboards and Slices for exporting multiple images out of a single document"; "Automatic @2x export for Retina graphics".
  • It's a native Mac-only application; I doubt there's another vector application that runs better on Mac.

They offer a free trial on their website. I think you should just give it a try and see whether you like it. If you're new to vector editing, I think this is the best app to use (due to its simplicity).


Napkin is the ultimate tool for concise visual communication. Painlessly annotate images or create diagrams and share the results quickly.

Article of interest: Napkin: The Simplest Way to Sketch Your Thoughts On Your Mac.

It is a Premium App however available on the Mac App Store $39.99


The two I use most often for vector graphics:

  • Sketch is probably the best actively maintained Mac vector graphics tool. It's the one I use for regular old vector work.
  • OmniGraffle is a fantastic vector graphics tool with a heavy focus on diagrams, flowcharts, wireframes and such. It's the best tool available for these kinds of jobs.

Both of these support exporting as PNGs, and run natively on OS X.

Other options:

  • There's always Adobe Illustrator, of course, but it's expensive and doesn't feel very native.
  • Intaglio is another option that I used to use, though it seems to not have been updated in a while.
  • I haven't used iDraw, but it looks interesting.
  • And of course, both Acorn and Pixelmator have basic vector tools, even though they're focusing on pixel graphics.
  • Welcome to Software Recommendations! This post does not contain enough information to be considered a high quality answer. Please read our discussion on what makes an answer high quality to see if you can incorporate some of these improvements into your answer, otherwise it may be removed. List type answers are specifically vetoed - at least include how each item meets the question requirements and it'll be okay to have multiple items on one answer. Commented Feb 25, 2014 at 16:07

Super Vectorizer is a good auto-tracing utilities that will save you hundreds of dollars. It has an easy interface that feels like a step-by-step. It automatically Trace and Vectorize Your Bitmap Images


Super Vectorizer features two modes, Edge and Color.


When using “Edge”, Super Vectorizer will trace the edges in black and white. With this option you will can change the threshold.


Changes the threshold for drawing the edges. The higher the threshold the more tolerant the image is to “edges”. You would typically use a higher threshold in brighter images

vectorized image by edgevectorized image by edge vectorized image by colorvectorized image by color



How it meets your requirements:

  • Support editing and creating vector graphics: Creating yes, editing no.
  • Be able to export to a .png of various sizes: Hrm, hrm: No – that's not a vector format AFAIK ;) It exports to Ai, SVG and PDF vector format
  • Run natively, not in an emulator: Yes (see also my other answer here)
  • it could not export to .png. As far as I know, png is not a vectorized format. The only feature of this software is to vectorize image. It could import mass of raster bitmap fomats(maybe 70 formats? I didn't calculate it.) and export to Ai, SVG and PDF vector format. It is so easy operated program that I don't need adjust any setting. I just import image,select the mode I need (by Edge or Color or Grey Color), then click "export". That is it. But no editing is supported.
    – debellis
    Commented Nov 13, 2014 at 1:49

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.