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Inkscape is a free open source professional vector graphics editor for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux.


[edit] Overview

Whether you are an illustrator, designer, web designer or just someone who needs to create some vector imagery, Inkscape is for you!

  • flexible drawing tools
  • broad file format compatibility
  • powerful text tool
  • Bezier and spiro curves

[edit] Features

  • Object creation
    • Drawing: pencil tool (freehand drawing with simple paths), pen tool (creating B├ęzier curves and straight lines), calligraphy tool (freehand drawing using filled paths representing calligraphic strokes)
    • Shape tools: rectangles (may have rounded corners), ellipses (includes circles, arcs, segments), stars/polygons (can be rounded and/or randomized), spirals
    • Text tool (multi-line text, full on-canvas editing)
    • Embedded bitmaps (with a command to create and embed bitmaps of selected objects)
    • Clones ("live" linked copies of objects), including a tool to create patterns and arrangements of clones
  • Object manipulation
    • Transformations (moving, scaling, rotating, skewing), both interactively and by specifying exact numeric values
    • Z-order operations (raising and lowering)
    • Grouping objects ("select in group" without ungrouping, or "enter the group" making it a temporary layer)
    • Layers (lock and/or hide individual layers, rearrange them, etc; layers can form a hierarchical tree)
    • Alignment and distribution commands
  • Fill and stroke
    • Color selector (RGB, HSL, CMYK, color wheel, CMS)
    • Color picker tool
    • Copy/paste style
    • A gradient editor capable of multi-stop gradients
    • Pattern fills (bitmap/vectors)
    • Dashed strokes, with many predefined dash patterns
    • Path markers (ending, middle and/or beginning marks, e.g. arrowheads)
  • Operations on paths
    • Node editing: moving nodes and Bezier handles, node alignment and distribution, etc.
    • Converting to path (for text objects or shapes), including converting stroke to path
    • Boolean operations
    • Path simplification, with variable threshold
    • Path insetting and outsetting, including dynamic and linked offset objects
    • Bitmap tracing (both color and monochrome paths)
  • Text support
    • Multi-line text
    • Uses any installed outline fonts, including right-to-left scripts
    • Kerning, letterspacing, linespacing adjustments
    • Text on path (both text and path remain editable)
    • Text in shape (fill shape following stroke)
  • Rendering
    • Fully anti-aliased display
    • Alpha transparency support for display and PNG export
    • Complete "as you drag" rendering of objects during interactive transformations
  • Misc
    • Live watching and editing the document tree in the XML editor
    • Command line options for export and conversions

[edit] Next release features

expect in early 2015

  • Cairo rendering for display and PNG export
  • OpenMP multithreading for all filters
  • Plot on serial pen/cutting plotters
  • C++ code conversion
  • Major improvements in the Text tool, typography extensions
  • Measure tool
  • Type design features
  • Symbol library and support for Visio stencils
  • Cross platform WMF and EMF import and export
  • Improved support for Corel DRAW documents, Visio importer
  • Support for real world document and page size units, e.g. millimeters
  • Numerous usability improvements
  • Official Windows 64-bit build

[edit] Supported Formats

Inkscape can import or convert the following formats

[edit] Details

Inkscape natively supports opening or importing SVG, SVGZ (gzipped SVG), PDF and Adobe Illustrator (.ai) formats. Inkscape can also import CDR (CorelDraw) and VSD (Visio) natively.

With the help of extensions, Inkscape can open a number other vector formats. For importing PostScript or EPS (you will need ghostscript). For formats of Dia, XFig, or Sketch, you need to have those programs installed.

Inkscape can natively import most bitmapped formats (JPEG, PNG, GIF, etc.) as bitmap images, but it can only export PNG bitmaps.

Inkscape can save as SVG, SVGZ, PDF, PostScript/EPS/EPSi, LaTeX (*.tex), POVRay (*.pov), HPGL, and MANY others. Starting with version 0.91, Inkscape can save as: FXG (Flash XML Graphics), SIF (Synfig Animation Studio), HTML5 Canvas, and there are improvements for XAML export. Exporting other files will need a compatible program to work.

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