Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Why Photoshop? How about Photoshop Elements?

I get asked this a LOT: "Do I REALLY NEED Photoshop? Can I make do with Photoshop Elements?"

The people asking this question are usually regarding me with glassy eyes, since they have found out how much Photoshop costs. Yup. It's expensive.

The kneejerk response is to add "But it's worth it!" This is the part where digi-geeks go on (and on) about how it's the World Standard for Digital Editing. You add that it's used by many of the top advertising and graphic houses around the world.

Uh huh.

But the question remains: "Is Photoshop WORTH $700?"

The real answer: "It depends. Is it worth it to YOU?"

Aha. Caught you off guard, huh?

Photoshop is worth the money if you want to be able to do ANYTHING with your image...and if you are willing to put in the many hours it will take for you to really learn how to use it.

It's true that you can learn the basics very quickly (hence the course we sell called "Learn the Basics of Photoshop in SIX HOURS: from our website at http://www.photoshopbasics.com/ ).

But let's face facts: not everyone is going to want to invest the time and the money in using Photoshop. It's kind of like buying a Corvette so you can drive to the grocery store every other Sunday.

Photoshop Elements has a lot going for it. In the first place: it's MUCH more user friendly. The folks at Adobe have tried to anticipate what kind of projects you are going to be working on...and they've worked hard to make it easier for you to use.

Layers work. And you get many of the Way Cool tools available in Photoshop.

You can use ALL the third party filter sets in Elements. There are a lot of Photoshop users -- me included -- who use filters a LOT. (Filters, also known as "Plug ins" are third party software packages designed to work from within Photoshop to help you do seriously cool stuff very quickly.)

Many people have cut their digital editing teeth on Elements and moved up to Photoshop when they had the basics down. There's a lot of power under that Elements hood.

It's true that some of the very cool Bells and Whistles from Photoshop are missing from Elements. But let's face it: you won't miss what you never knew. AND if you DO move up to Photoshop, the learning curve will be significantly easier. (IE You won't be throwing up when you look at the screen for the first time.)

Best of all -- all our courses work with Photoshop or Photoshop Elements.

And there's the difference in COST -- with Elements coming in at less than a third the cost of Photoshop.

But having said all that, I have to admit that I would never use Elements if Photoshop were available. But I'm a digi-geek, lacking social options that would drag me away from my computer. I love bells and whistles. I like all my adjustment layers and ALL the available tools in my trusty little cyber toolbox.

Short answer? Photoshop is worth it if you are gonna use it. Much better to give it all a try on Photoshop Elements and see if you get digi-fever. (You'll know because you'll be up all night, develop a craving for high sugar sodas and Doritos.) THEN make the investment.

If you can't wait a single second longer -- keep in mind that you can download fully functioning 30 day TRIAL versions of Photoshop as well as Photoshop Elements from Adobe at http://www.adobe.com/

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