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Designing A Website from Scratch – Illustrator or Photoshop?

Would you recommend Adobe Photoshop, or Adobe Illustrator for a professional freelance web designer on a somewhat-low budget with a small but growing client base?

  • similar to : graphicdesign.stackexchange.com/questions/538/… – Jack Oct 11 '11 at 5:15
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    @Jack I don't slice PSD's but rather I use the features provided in HTML and CSS to create webpages that match the PSDs I am given. Slicing PSDs for a website basically involves just cutting an image up into sections sad face, and aligning them (usually with tables double sad face) for the webpage. The "similar" question you mentioned involves the making and slicing of a webpage using Dreamweaver (not my kind of dream). As I just told you I design and code webpages not design and slice webpages. – Web_Designer Oct 14 '11 at 20:01
  • Honey i said similar to, not exact :) and mod did what they want to, so i stand :| – Jack Oct 16 '11 at 8:49

It's like asking "hammer or saw for homebuilding?"

You need both, and likely several more tools.

Photoshop is primarily for raster Images and illustrator, vector. Both are really handy to have. But you don't necessarily need to use Adobe to supply those tools. There are many more options (the GIMP, paint.net, pixelmator, inkscape, corel, etc)

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    This is not right. The question is about webdesign. Vector is not needed for webdesign, webdesign is pixelbased only. Your metaphore is funny, but misplaced. The answer is that you only need photoshop for webdesign. Now on the other hand if you are also planning to do print, then i would buy illustrator to. – Luuk Oct 11 '11 at 7:20
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    Illustrator is an illustration tool. It exports both vector and raster. As a drawing tool, for elements such as icons, buttons and the like, many people will find a vector app MUCH more appropriate for maintaining graphics for a web site. Arguing that one app is for print, one for web is shortsighted and the sign of a craftsman with a limited tool box. – DA01 Oct 11 '11 at 13:04
  • Still do not agree. All big webdesigners i know including me (not stating that i am big btw) are using photoshop for webdesign. Icons only intended for webdesign are also made in photshop. Why? Photoshop simply has more abillities for raster. I myself do web and print. When doing web, i use photoshop. When doing print I use both. And beside that it stuns me that you state that buttons are made in illustrator (vector). It really is not intended for that. I can do way more in photoshop. As a matter of fact i can make everyting in PS that is made (and better) with illustrator, just not vector. – Luuk Oct 12 '11 at 7:56
  • To each their own, but I've rarely found a designer working in any medium that use a single tool. – DA01 Oct 12 '11 at 13:56
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    Software is a tool designers use. And while you have an opinion that web designers don't make use of Illustrator, it's merely an opinion. Not a fact. – DA01 Oct 13 '11 at 13:57

Illustrator is for print media predominately. If your focus is digital than photoshop is the better choice.

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    Illustrator is for illustration predominately...be it web, print, video, signage, etc. The value is in the toolset Illustrator provides. Most designers (print or web or what have you) will use both types of apps (among others) with much regularity. – DA01 Oct 11 '11 at 13:05

I would recommend getting both with Adobe's Switch promotion: 50% off through October 31, 2011. You can get both Photoshop Extended and Illustrator for $850, along with a bunch of other apps, including Flash. Even if you don't have a use for any of the video apps, this is still a heck of a deal and poises you for better upgrade and side-grade pricing in the future.

The Switch promo is geared towards getting disgruntled Final Cut Pro users to switch to Premiere, but you're not required to have a Final Cut Pro license.

You could also look into Adobe's subscription plans. The monthly plan makes sense as a fairly cheap way to get the software for occasional use or in the short-term until you can purchase a non-subscription license. The yearly plan will start to actually cost more than the non-subscription license (plus subsequent upgrades) after the 2nd or 3rd upgrade.

  • The catch is that you appear to need to own a license to one of the apps you are switching from. (But I agree, at some point, getting the Suite makes sense...whether we like it or not, Adobe has a monopoly on our industry and if you want to easily share files, you need Adobe's products at some point) – DA01 Oct 11 '11 at 13:09

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