Atril is a simple multi-page document viewer. Atril is a fork of Evince.
You should give Mate a try then . It's essentially Gnome 2 but actively maintained.
Inkscape is a free, open source professional vector graphics editor for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux.
Gnome is just one part of the story - the VM was always decent looking but the apps and the ecosystem really made it look that way. For example if you look at the controls you got with GTK out of the box in GTK3 era I remember huge paddings, unintuitive UX (the GTK file picker is the worst I've used). Go check out an app like https://inkscape.org and compare it to...