If you would like to do graphic design on a laptop, then you have to make sure that the machine is suitable for the job. It’s not as demanding as heavy gaming or video editing but it does require above average specifications. Below are some of the basic drawing laptop requirements (and here are some recommendations too!):
Consider the type of drawing that you like to pursue. Will it be line art? Will it be painterly? Are going to use a lot of layers? Professional-level drawing can take a toll on the machine. Having a Core i7 will always be ideal to speed up renders, transitions, strokes, and the overall movement of the machine. It doesn’t necessarily have to be the latest generation so don’t worry if you have a slightly older machine. If you are really on a tight budget and you need to buy a new laptop, then a Core i5 can perform decently.
If you are going to work on your laptop most of the time, then it pays to get a large screen. Just keep in mind that the weight of the laptop will also go higher with size. A 15″ or 17″ display would be ideal as you get to see more detail with more clarity this way. Of course, this has to be accompanied by an excellent resolution and color reproduction. A 720p screen is simply unacceptable for high level work. Going 1080p is bare minimum. There are already 2K and 4K screens for those who wish to get the ultimate experience. This may not be necessary if you are going to connect it to a good external monitor.
The amount of memory will influence the speed of the computer and the ability to run multiple programs side by side. You can also work on several projects without causing the machine to slow down. When drawing, you will probably need to open your main drawing software, your reference images, your browser to solve any artistic or technical issues, and a host of other things. The important thing is to get the recommended amount of RAM as stated by the software developer. Add a bit more to have room for other programs. About 8GB should be good enough but higher is always better.
High-resolution images can take a lot of space. Get the largest drive you can afford. Note that SSD technology is much faster than HDD so you may want to make the switch. It will make boot-ups , shutdowns, and app launches go quicker. The prices have recently plummeted so you should be able to purchase a decent-sized SSD drive for a reasonable price. While it is not one of the major drawing laptop requirements, it is definitely becoming the norm.
It may not be necessary to get a laptop with an advanced video card unless you are planning to draw 3D objects. Then the added graphics computational muscle will certainly help with the load. Video cards may also help expand your capability to connect the laptop to multiple monitors. This type of setup can boost productivity as each screen can be dedicated to a specific activity.