Can You Get Procreate on a MacBook? A Comprehensive Guide
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 10 min read


1. Procreate and MacBook Compatibility

2. Top Alternatives for Procreate on MacBook

3. Workarounds to Use Procreate on MacBook

4. Tips for Using Procreate on MacBook

5. The Future of Procreate on MacBook

Have you ever wondered if you can get Procreate on a MacBook? As a popular drawing and painting app, Procreate has made a name for itself among digital artists. This blog aims to answer your question and guide you through the compatibility of Procreate with MacBooks, alternatives, workarounds, tips, and the future of this dynamic app. Let's dive in!

1. Procreate and MacBook Compatibility

Before we explore the possibilities, it's essential to understand the compatibility of Procreate with MacBooks. We'll discuss Procreate's system requirements, MacBook specifications, and the differences between using Procreate on an iPad versus a MacBook.

Procreate System Requirements

Procreate is specifically designed for iOS devices, such as iPads and iPhones. Its features are optimized to work with touchscreens and Apple Pencil, providing an intuitive and responsive drawing experience. As a result, Procreate is not natively available for macOS and thus not directly compatible with MacBooks.

Some important system requirements for Procreate include:

  • iOS 13.2 or later
  • At least 1 GB of RAM
  • Apple Pencil support (for pressure sensitivity and tilt)

MacBook Specifications

While MacBooks are powerful devices, they have a different set of specifications compared to iPads. MacBooks run on macOS, not iOS, which is the primary reason why Procreate is not natively available for these devices. Some key MacBook features include:

  • macOS operating system
  • Intel or Apple Silicon processors
  • Trackpad or mouse input

These differences create a gap between the two platforms, making it challenging to use Procreate directly on a MacBook. However, there are workarounds and alternatives that we'll discuss later in this blog.

Procreate on iPad vs MacBook

When considering whether you can get Procreate on a MacBook, it's helpful to compare the experience of using it on an iPad versus a MacBook. The iPad is designed with artists in mind, offering features like:

  • Touchscreen interface
  • Apple Pencil support
  • Portability

On the other hand, a MacBook offers a more traditional computing experience with a larger screen, a keyboard, and a trackpad or mouse input. While it may not be as intuitive for drawing and painting, it does offer benefits like more powerful hardware and a wider range of software options. So, while you can't directly get Procreate on a MacBook, there are alternatives and workarounds that can provide a similar drawing experience.

2. Top Alternatives for Procreate on MacBook

Since you can't get Procreate directly on a MacBook, it's essential to explore other options that provide a similar experience. In this section, we'll discuss the top alternatives for Procreate on MacBook, outlining their features, benefits, and how they compare to Procreate.

Adobe Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop is a well-known and powerful graphics editor that can serve as an excellent alternative to Procreate on a MacBook. Its vast array of features, tools, and customization options make it popular among artists and designers alike. Some key features of Photoshop include:

  • Layer-based editing
  • Advanced brush settings
  • Wide range of filters and effects

While Photoshop doesn't have the same touchscreen interface as Procreate, it provides a similar drawing experience when using a drawing tablet or a stylus with your MacBook. Furthermore, Photoshop's compatibility with other Adobe products, like Illustrator and InDesign, makes it a versatile option for artists who need to switch between different types of projects.

Affinity Designer

Affinity Designer is another excellent alternative for those seeking a Procreate-like experience on a MacBook. This vector-based design software offers a smooth and intuitive interface, making it easy for artists to transition from Procreate. Some standout features of Affinity Designer include:

  • Pixel and vector workspaces
  • Advanced grid and guide options
  • Flexible layer management

One significant advantage of Affinity Designer is its one-time payment model, which makes it an attractive option for artists on a budget. Plus, with its continuous updates and improvements, you can be sure that you're getting a cutting-edge tool for your creative projects.

Corel Painter

Corel Painter is a digital art software specifically designed for artists who want to create natural-looking, traditional art on their computers. Its unique features make it an excellent alternative to Procreate on a MacBook. Some of Corel Painter's highlights include:

  • Realistic brush strokes and textures
  • Customizable brushes and palettes
  • Wide variety of media, including oils, watercolors, and pastels

Corel Painter provides a similar drawing experience to Procreate, especially when used with a drawing tablet or stylus. While it may not have the same touchscreen functionality as Procreate, it excels in delivering a traditional art experience for digital artists. It's an ideal choice for those who want to create natural-looking paintings on their MacBook.

Now that we've covered some of the top alternatives to Procreate on a MacBook, let's dive into some workarounds that can help you use Procreate on your MacBook indirectly.

3. Workarounds to Use Procreate on MacBook

Although you can't get Procreate directly on your MacBook, there are still some clever workarounds that can help you enjoy a Procreate-like experience. In this section, we'll explore three popular solutions that enable you to use Procreate on your MacBook indirectly. So, let's jump right in and discover how you can bridge the gap between your MacBook and Procreate.


Astropad is a fantastic app that allows you to transform your iPad into a drawing tablet for your MacBook. With Astropad, you can use Procreate on your iPad while mirroring the display on your MacBook. Some benefits of using Astropad include:

  • High-quality performance: Astropad offers a lag-free drawing experience, ensuring that your artwork remains smooth and precise.
  • Customizable shortcuts: You can create your own shortcuts in Astropad, making it even easier to work with Procreate on your MacBook.
  • Wireless or wired connection: Astropad supports both wireless and wired connections, giving you the flexibility to choose your preferred setup.

Keep in mind that Astropad requires an iPad and an Apple Pencil, but if you already have these, it's an excellent way to use Procreate on your MacBook.

Apple Sidecar

Apple Sidecar is another useful workaround that lets you extend your MacBook's display to your iPad. This feature enables you to use Procreate on your iPad while viewing it on your MacBook. Here's what Sidecar has to offer:

  • Seamless integration: As an Apple feature, Sidecar offers a smooth, integrated experience between your MacBook and iPad.
  • Gesture support: Sidecar supports various touch gestures, allowing you to interact with Procreate on your iPad in a more intuitive way.
  • Easy setup: Setting up Sidecar is as simple as connecting your iPad to your MacBook and selecting the Sidecar option in your MacBook's display settings.

Like Astropad, Sidecar requires an iPad and an Apple Pencil. However, if you have these devices, Sidecar is a convenient and user-friendly way to use Procreate on your MacBook.

Third-Party Screen Mirroring Apps

Finally, there are various third-party screen mirroring apps available that can help you use Procreate on your MacBook. These apps mirror your iPad's screen onto your MacBook, allowing you to view and interact with Procreate. Some popular screen mirroring apps include:

  • AirServer: AirServer is a versatile app that supports screen mirroring from various devices, including iPads. It offers a high-quality mirroring experience and supports multiple connections.
  • Reflector: Reflector is another screen mirroring app that works with iPads and other devices. It's easy to set up and provides a smooth mirroring experience.
  • Mirroring360: Mirroring360 is a reliable screen mirroring app that works with iPads and many other devices. It offers a simple setup process and a lag-free mirroring experience.

While third-party apps may not offer the same level of integration as Astropad or Sidecar, they can still provide a viable solution for using Procreate on your MacBook.

Now that we've explored some workarounds for using Procreate on a MacBook, let's look at some tips to make the experience even better.

4. Tips for Using Procreate on MacBook

Now that we've covered some workarounds for using Procreate on your MacBook, let's dive into some tips to make your experience even better. We'll cover optimizing performance, using keyboard shortcuts, and selecting the best stylus options for your MacBook. So, let's jump right in and see how we can enhance your Procreate experience on a MacBook!

Optimizing Performance

When using Procreate on your MacBook via workarounds, it's essential to ensure that your devices are functioning at their best. A smooth and responsive experience can make all the difference when working on your digital art. Here are some tips to help you optimize performance:

  • Close unnecessary apps: Make sure to close any apps or programs you don't need while using Procreate, both on your MacBook and iPad. This will help free up resources and keep your devices running smoothly.
  • Keep software up-to-date: Regularly update your MacBook, iPad, and any apps or programs you're using with Procreate. This ensures you're running the latest versions, which often include performance enhancements and bug fixes.
  • Adjust settings: In some cases, tweaking certain settings in your screen mirroring app or the macOS system preferences can help improve performance. Experiment with different settings to find what works best for your setup.

Keyboard Shortcuts

One of the benefits of using Procreate on your MacBook is the ability to use your MacBook's keyboard for shortcuts. Keyboard shortcuts can help speed up your workflow and make it more comfortable to work on your art. Here's what you need to know:

  • Learn default shortcuts: Familiarize yourself with the default keyboard shortcuts in Procreate, like "Cmd + Z" for undo, "Cmd + T" for transform, and "Cmd + D" for deselect. Knowing these shortcuts can save you time and effort as you work.
  • Customize shortcuts: Some screen mirroring apps, like Astropad, allow you to create custom shortcuts. This can be particularly helpful if you have specific actions you use frequently while working in Procreate.
  • Practice makes perfect: The more you use keyboard shortcuts, the more natural they will become. Don't be afraid to experiment with new shortcuts and find the ones that work best for you.

Stylus Options for MacBook

While you can't use an Apple Pencil directly on your MacBook, there are still some great stylus options available that can help you create amazing art. Here are a few options to consider:

  • Use your iPad and Apple Pencil: When using workarounds like Astropad or Sidecar, you'll be drawing on your iPad with your Apple Pencil, while your MacBook displays the art. This means you can still take advantage of the precise and responsive capabilities of the Apple Pencil.
  • Third-party styluses: If you'd like to draw directly on your MacBook, there are third-party styluses available that are compatible with MacBooks, like the Wacom Bamboo Ink or the Adonit Jot Pro. While these styluses may not offer the same level of precision as the Apple Pencil, they can still be a good alternative for certain tasks.
  • Graphics tablet: Another option is using a graphics tablet, like a Wacom Intuos, which connects to your MacBook and allows you to draw with a stylus. This can provide a more traditional drawing experience and still offer a high level of precision.

With these tips in hand, you'll be well-prepared to make the most of your Procreate experience on a MacBook. But what does the future hold for Procreate and MacBooks? Let's explore that next!

5. The Future of Procreate on MacBook

As we've discussed the current landscape and workarounds for using Procreate on a MacBook, you might be wondering what the future has in store for this popular digital art app and its compatibility with MacBooks. In this section, we'll explore recent developments from Procreate, the impact of Apple Silicon, and industry trends that could shape the future of Procreate on MacBooks.

Recent Developments from Procreate

Procreate is continually updating and refining its app to better cater to its user base. While there's no official announcement of a native macOS version, the creators of Procreate have hinted at their interest in expanding to other platforms. This could mean that, eventually, we might see a version of Procreate specifically designed for MacBooks.

Moreover, with the increasing demand for cross-platform compatibility, it's possible that the Procreate team might prioritize the development of a MacBook version. In the meantime, keeping an eye on Procreate's updates and news can help you stay informed about any potential developments in this area.

Apple Silicon and the Future of Apps

Apple's introduction of its own Apple Silicon chips, like the M1, has opened up new possibilities for app developers. These chips offer improved performance and energy efficiency, making it easier for developers to create powerful apps that run smoothly on macOS devices.

With Apple Silicon, there's potential for greater integration between iOS and macOS apps. This could lead to a future where apps like Procreate can run seamlessly on both iPads and MacBooks, offering users a more unified experience. While it's not a guarantee, the introduction of Apple Silicon chips certainly makes the possibility of a native Procreate app for MacBooks more likely.

The digital art and design industry is continuously evolving, and so is the demand for flexible, powerful, and high-quality tools. As more users seek the ability to work across multiple devices, app developers are likely to recognize the need for cross-platform compatibility, especially for popular apps like Procreate.

With the growing interest in digital art and the increasing popularity of MacBooks as a versatile creative tool, it wouldn't be surprising if the developers behind Procreate eventually create a version that runs natively on macOS. By paying attention to industry trends and user feedback, they can develop a product that meets the needs of their customers and ensures they remain competitive in the market.

In conclusion, while we can't say for certain that a native Procreate app for MacBooks is on the horizon, recent developments and industry trends do suggest that it's a possibility worth keeping an eye on. For now, you can make use of the workarounds and tips discussed in this guide to enjoy Procreate on your MacBook and be prepared for any changes that may come in the future. So, can you get Procreate on MacBook? Not natively just yet, but with the workarounds and the ever-evolving technological landscape, who knows what the future holds?

If you're intrigued by the capabilities of Procreate and want to learn more about its applications, check out the workshop 'Animating with Procreate and Photoshop' by Nyanza D. This workshop will teach you how to create stunning animations using Procreate and Photoshop, expanding your digital art skills and opening up new creative possibilities.