Here is my dilemma. For a while now I have had some ideas kicking around in the back of my mind for a web cartoon. I would like to try to put the idea into reality, but I run into one tiny little problem. I can't draw. At all. I've tried, I took classes - at the end I managed a decent stick figure. It's pathetic.

Surely in the age of technology there must be a program out there that can help.

I know there are websites that will give you access to their image libraries and such to create cartoons with but they also put wording in their terms of service that make anything you create using their service, theirs. Not what I want. The program doesn't have to be point and click simple, I can learn a complex program - just don't make me draw by hand!

  • By "cartoon" do you mean animated? I'm not sure your going to find anything which creates art for you and doesn't retain the rights to the art.
    – Scott
    Oct 13, 2013 at 2:25
  • No, not animated. Sorry, I should have been more specific. I don't need it to create the art by itself really. I figured that was asking too much. But is there anything that kind of guides the process? Kind of a halfway point between just giving you a premade picture and your just drawing one. I guess I am hoping for something that gives me an outline and lets me edit it from there.
    – Expecto
    Oct 13, 2013 at 2:30
  • 4
    There isn't a magical piece of software that can draw for you yet.
    – DA01
    Oct 13, 2013 at 4:32

4 Answers 4


If you're trying to create a web comic without drawing, I think the answer is not going to be software, it's going to be some creative idea for making unconventional 'function over form' visuals that work as something that carries the content, without needing to look like conventional classic cartoons.

The content quality is more important than the drawing quality. Successful examples:

Some top-of-the-head ideas of things that could carry the content of a web comic without requiring drawing (note these are purely to help you kick off coming up with you're own ideas that suit your idea for the comic):

  • Photo montage (as in Peter Kennard style composite images, not the scrapbook stuff that makes up most google image search results for "photo montage")
  • Deliberately bad drawings
  • Paper cutouts (the first pilot episode of South Park was made with scissors, coloured card and a camera; the creators still have all the bits in a box)
  • Pay an artist to make posable puppets which you then arrange, light and photograph
  • Objects posed and photographed as if interacting (bring on the trumpets! [video requires audio])
  • etc...

Or, you could buddy up with a graphic artist who wants to do a web comic but doesn't have any ideas. There will be many, not sure where would be best to look - maybe DeviantArt, which is a community popular with enthusiast/hobbyist graphic artists.

  • Actually southpark is still pieces of paper altgough they have been transfered into a 3d app. But basically they emulate the paper.
    – joojaa
    Jul 30, 2014 at 15:47

There's a cute little app called Comic Life, by Plasq. You can probably have some fun with free clipart and photographs, and use the software to add the 'comic strip' elements.

stupid comic


You specify that you need to draw an outline, i like to trace over a photo using black lines, although it doesnt animate the lifeforms, it creates perfect poses and proportions. color the pics in with spilled paint using swatches from the original and it's about as fast as a good drawer and about as good or better because it is realistic poses. you can use any program that uses layers, gimp, PS, and probably some cartoon programs with integrated cartoon functions.

I was thinking of using unity3d for moving and arranging the pics and gimp for drawing them, because you can program funny movements using unity3d, for example random shaking and rotations.

Actually its awesom to even lay a paper on top of the screen and trace shapes from the tv/pc that way onto paper, it looks so cool! it would be good to have an program integrated with google search where you can trace and save many pics and color swatch them for later arrangement.


Stumbled upon this question and thought I would mention: you could just draw SVGs with the software of your choice and the cartoonize them using comic.js.

  • 1
    Suppose the given link is broken, then your answer is useless. Please add an explainaition in your own words here!
    – Mensch
    Oct 17, 2015 at 0:44

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.