Lightroom vs. Photoshop vs. Illustrator - Which one should you get?
Updated: May 10
Cinemagic is an innovative media powerhouse that has a Digital & Interactive department. An important aspect of Digital is the importance of Design. Some of the digital campaigns that we take care of require designing, while some of them are designed by the client himself. With a wide range of applications and softwares available today, it's hard for someone to understand (before purchasing) which software would be helpful for their kind of work.
This blog post aims to provide you our humble review of the few softwares that we mostly use. Hopefully, by the end of this post, you would understand better what each software does and would also be able to make a decision or understand which one would cater to your personal or your organization's needs the most.
The Adobe design apps — Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign — have unique features that make each one better suited for different tasks and projects. You can also use them together to build and prepare all the various elements in your design for any kind of digital or print production.
If you're unsure which app to use for your next project, consider the tasks that each app would shine through.
Illustrator helps you to construct accurate, editable graphics of vectors that remain sharp when scaled to any size. To build logos, icons, and other images that look equally good on a business card, flyer, or billboard, use innovative shape and drawing devices. Edit and customize the text to create striking typography in several ways.
Using Illustrator to produce artwork that can be used in several platforms, and for various forms of artwork including custom typography, infographics, and one-page design templates such as a shape or flyer. 'Most of the logos and branding items that are being created in the industry these days are created as vectors in a program such as Illustrator', exclaims our Head of Creative and Digital, Cristian Craita.
Adobe Illustrator produces a variety of digital and printed images including drawings, maps, diagrams, graphs, logos, and illustrations. Illustrator allows a user to import and use an image as a guide for tracing an object in the image. This can be used to re-color a photograph or to produce a sketch-like look. Illustrator also allows text to be manipulated in several ways, making Illustrator a useful tool for producing postcards, posters, and other graphic designs that incorporate text and pictures.
I can say it (Illustrator) is one of the first programs I fell in love with. Blame me for loving virtually infinite high resolution extra sharp vector illustrations. Yes, that is the main advantage of vectors which are created in a program such as Adobe Illustrator over raster images which have a limited resolution and quality created or just edited in programs such as Photoshop or Lightroom. - Cristian Craita
The ability of the Illustrator to position text around a curve is especially useful for creating logos for artists. Illustrator is also used to produce mock-ups of what the website looks like when it is done and to create icons that are used in apps or websites. We, as Cinemagic, tend to use Illustrator for designing the logos of our productions like series or films.
The ability of the Illustrator to create and change vector graphics often means that files must be saved in vector graphic formats. Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG), Portable Document Format (PDF), Encapsulated PostScript (EPS), Windows Metafile (WMF), and Vector Markup Language (VML) are some of those formats.
Lightroom as a photo editor provides a subset of features from Photoshop that are custom suited to the contemporary photographer. Lightroom covers the bulk, if not all, of the resources you would most likely need for image manipulation.
However, Lightroom is much more than just an app for photo editing or image editing. Lightroom allows you to import, track, organize, and find pictures. Lightroom, in effect, is picture management and photo editing, merged into one single tool.
Unlike Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom is a photo editor that is non-destructive, meaning you don't have to think about the "save as" button. In reality, there is no "save" button at all on Lightroom. All editions are conveniently stored in your Lightroom folder, which serves as your edit and history database.
Lightroom is suitable for most simple photo editing including (but not limited to) cropping, white balance, composition, histogram changes, tonal curves, black and white conversion, spot elimination, red-eye corrections, gradients, local adjustment, sharpening, noise reduction, lens profile corrections, distortion, and saturation. With Lightroom you can create sets, add keywords, transfer multiple images or files across your hard drive, create slideshows, print books, and fairly easily share your photos directly with Facebook. You can also make basic adjustments including cropping and sharpening, as well as using more sophisticated tools like the adjustment brush ("brush" on minor changes like brightness, light, or sharpness), lens correction (Adobe has offered a range of automatic adjustment settings to "fix" stuff like distortion and vignetting), and curves (a more sophisticated way to alter the overall look of your photo).
Lightroom is cool and has tons of pre-loaded photo filters, and any possible adjustment you could do to an image. Yet it is more used by photographers that want their photos to be in-depth adjusted and fine tuned to have a certain look - Cristian Craita
When you get started on your photography journey, you'll need to do something on your computer for your images. You need to do some post-processing if you want your images to be more than just snapshots with a fancy phone. If you want to do photography for several years, even as a hobby, and expect to find a particular picture you'll need to arrange it. Currently, Lightroom is the best app for the job here.
At Cinemagic, Lightroom is used (minimally) to edit photos for our social media, if they require any sudden changes.
Photoshop is your go-to program designed to work with pixel-based images for print, web, and smartphone applications. Powerful editing tools allow you to correct exposure and color balance, crop and straighten images, change photographic colors, erase portrait defects, or combine multiple images into a new scene.
Using Photoshop to create picture heavy flyers, posters, web and device templates, videos and animations, or edit content in 3D formats. In short, it's a computer beast that helps to give creatives the power they need to build. Adobe Photoshop is an evergreen application I believe everyone should be using. It's because Adobe Photoshop embraces innovative thought and learning. Students will learn numerous skills to keep them engaged in their inventive works.
In my line of work, I can do all the adjustments on an image by using Photoshop. I know it has better capabilities, more processing power, and because of the layers, you get more creative freedom than with Lightroom - Cristian Craita
What can Photoshop do, beyond picture editing? Okay, these days, most drawings, comics, book covers, and other art you see online aren't made with a paintbrush and canvas. I know, it is, but digital is paintbrush and canvas. The pictures you see were created on a computer. Fortunately, many of the design-specific resources offered by Adobe have also been integrated into Photoshop. The pen tool, for instance, is a key feature of Adobe Illustrator. Now, it's a staple in virtually every Adobe app. As with graphic design, web design is not the main subject in Photoshop. There are other Adobe applications that are better suited to this, but when you build a mock-up for the front end of your website or device Photoshop can be a useful resource.
Adobe Photoshop is an excellent software with an outstanding collection of resources. Though originally intended for photo editing, it can do much more than that now, too. We hope this article has clued you in on all the capabilities of Photoshop.
Most of our poster designs for our films and series have been created and edited on Photoshop. In fact, the entire UI of Telly was designed on Photoshop.
Each software has its very own uses and tools that you can benefit from. Depending on the task at hand, different software would be required to tackle the situation, and sometimes, you might even require a combination of two softwares. To conclude, we have provided you with a brief understanding of each Adobe suite software and how our team has benefited from it. We hope that this short review of each application can help you decide what software to purchase out of the three and empowers you to create something magical.