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Looking to take your photography game up a notch? There are a number of free tools out there to edit pictures, but nothing as robust and reputable as Photoshop.
From basic color tweaks to more advanced features like touching up or manipulating, Photoshop is great if you’re a blogger or photographer who has a business that relies heavily on stunning, original imagery. Learn more about the popular photo software and how it can elevate your photo editing skills.
- What Is Photoshop? Overview & Background
- What Can I Do With Photoshop (Examples)?
- Key Features & Our Experience
- User Reviews
- Learn Photoshop In 5 Minutes (Video)
- More Photography Tips
Adobe Photoshop is a graphics editor for both Windows and macOS. Designed by Thomas and John Knoll back in 1988 it’s become the industry standard for editing photos and raster graphics (meaning images that are pixelated vs vector).
Adobe, which produces Photoshop, is the creator of the Creative Cloud Suite of online creative tools that help professionals with everything from graphic design to illustration and video editing. The interface is common across each piece of software, so once you master one program, it’s easy to move to the next.
Similar to most software, it is now available online to download via the Creative Cloud (a suite of other products offered by Adobe). There is also now a Photoshop app so you can edit images on the go via photoshop iPad app in addition to photoshop on mac or PC.
What Is The Best Version Of Adobe Photoshop
At time of writing Photoshop 2020 is the latest and greatest available. And because it’s on the cloud (and online) it will prompt existing users to update to the newest version.
What exactly can you do with Photoshop? The options are endless, but for the sake of this review, we’ll use an example of this stock photo of four sheep in a pasture.
Let’s say you wanted to give them all hats? Using the clone tool or select & paste you can duplicate the sheep and overlay another image of hats which you can transform and scale to fit each sheep.
Pretty fun right? But what if these sheep get bored of their pasture, say they’re dreaming of visiting outer space? Unfortunately the spaceship can only take one sheep at a time. Use the selection tool to delete the sky, then add a new layer consisting of your new space background. Lastly, adjust the color of one of the sheep and use the brush to draw a light. Well…you get the idea.
As you can see in the screenshots, there are a number of tools above and left of the canvas you can use to smudge, crop, rotate, paint and select different elements of the photo. The layers (on the right) allow you to re-order each of the objects (in this case, the sheep and hats).
While it might seem a bit overwhelming at first, once you get a grasp on the basics you can advance to learning shortcuts which will speed up the editing process.
- Optimize image file sizes for web so they load at a faster speed.
- Change the file types to jpg, png, gif, layered Photoshop file and more.
- Crop photos to the desired dimensions (including custom presets).
- Transform or rotate the aspect ratio to create real-life renderings and perspective mock-ups.
- Draw dozens of simple shapes in their library.
- Sync’s with Adobe’s fonts for thousands of options for typeface.
- Add artistic filters to turn photos into paintings, photo copies, watercolors and more.
- Touch up photo blemishes in portraits and old photos.
- Publish to the Creative Cloud to access your projects from other devices.
My Personal Experience
I’ve personally used Photoshop for more than 20 years. I first learned how to use Photoshop back in high school in my newspaper and yearbook class, and have used it personally ever since. I’ve been applying it professionally for We Rock Your Web for more than 6 years. While other platforms have entered the scene, nothing is as advanced or superior for photo editing as Photoshop. It really is the industry standard. I don’t use the iPhone app much but it’s good to know it’s there if I need it. – Sadie C., Creative at We Rock Your Web
- Individuals – $9.99/month
- Business – $33.99/month
- Students & Teachers – $19.99/month for all Adobe apps
- Schools & Universities – Check pricing options on website
Note: There is also Photoshop Elements which is a more basic, inexpensive version of Photoshop suited to beginners –
Here are a few customer reviews so you can have a better idea of others’ experiences with Photoshop.
Positive Photoshop Reviews
“Photoshop has powerful easy to use tools that allow you to make corrections to your images. The paint bucket tool allows you to add splashes of color to your grayscale artwork. Effects are easy to apply to layers and allow for advanced photo editing. Beginners and advanced users can create stunning graphics using the power of Photoshop. By far the most versatile of the Creative Suite, Photoshop is a tool that every designer should have in their toolkit.” – Danielle T., 3/31/2020 (g2.com)
“I am surprised to see so many negative reviews, I’ve only got positive things to say about Adobe Customer services from my experience. During this period with Covid-19, a lot of the freelance design industry are struggling with finances and after contacting adobe through their online chat, I got through with in minutes and they were very understanding, polite and offered a few months payment break whilst keeping my subscription. I know a many people who have had this similar positive experience with Adobe it has been a real life saver. Thank you so much.” – Josie F., 4/26/2020 (Trustpilot.com)
Negative Photoshop Reviews
“I did dislike that you have to have a pretty powerful computer to use Photoshop and any other Adobe products, but it makes sense since it packs a lot of features and is quick! Photoshop can be a bit buggy sometimes, usually, that means that features wouldn’t work or I would have to use some very hard workaround to try and use the feature.” – Jordan, 3/21/2020 (g2.com)
“I tried the week trial, accidentally left it on for an extra day, got charged for the month, and a cancellation fee. Don’t try it.” – Guillermo R., 4/27/2020 (Trustpilot.com)
Here’s an overview video to give you show you the basics of Photoshop and its interface and features in five minutes (including common shortcuts).
If you’re looking to see how Photoshop fared vs other photo editors, dive into our comprehensive comparison of photo editing software.
What are you looking to design?
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