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Photography Question 
Linda M. Mishler
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/27/2007

Which Photoshop to Start With?

I've never used anything except Google's Picasa on any of my photos.If my husband decides to get some type of Photoshop for me for Christmas...which one would be easiest to use?? Linda =)

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11/16/2007 3:17:22 PM

Pete H
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/9/2005
  Hello Linda,

I'd probably have to say Adobe 5..I believe ver 6 is out now. About $100

Easiest to use? They are all easy once you learn them. (grin)

The reason I recomend Adobe is simply because they are the one's that everybody compares themselves to. Pretty much the de'facto in image editing.

All but the most demanding shooters find that "Adobe Elements" is MORE than enough to tackle most image needs. It is geared more toward the photographer.

Adobe CS2 and CS3 are high powered suites better suited to the graphic artist than a photographer..They are pricey too.

95% of what you will be doing with your photos are:

1) Exposure compensations
2) Color corrections
3) Re-sizing
4) Sharpening
5) Cropping
6) Cloning & spot healing

That's about it.
Now; (Adobe Elements) is capable of much more as your skills grow with some pretty eloquent manipulations, filters, layers, masking, compositing etc...

You will learn these eventually and will no doubt find them fun too.

Be forewarned; Image editing at ANY level has a rather steep learning curve. (Time investment) If you take your time and don't try to move to advanced concepts too soon, you will be fine.

The internet is a good source of info for Adobe...entire magazines are available and devoted to this subject. Books too...tons of them.

I'd highly recommend a basic book for "Elements." As you progress through these basics, you'll find the books invaluable. Although Adobe does have help files, they really are not all that good for a get a book too.

all the best,


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11/16/2007 6:55:31 PM

Linda M. Mishler
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/27/2007
  Thank you Pete! I had a friend who is a professional photographer tell me not to get anything but the CS3. I looked online and was totally confused on even what kind of CS3 to get...too many choices.
Sounds like I have a lot of learning to do...=)You gave me a very good answer and explained very well why I don't need the more expensive CS3.Thank you soooo much! Blessings~ Linda =)

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11/16/2007 8:40:37 PM

Hi Linda,

the graphic/photo editor app world is a looot more diverse than just Photoshop and its kids. Some excellent freeware and shareware apps are out there. That can save you hundreds of bucks if you had a look around.

Here's a little wider perspective:

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11/16/2007 8:54:20 PM

Linda M. Mishler
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/27/2007
  Thanks W! I'll take a look.=)

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11/16/2007 9:29:57 PM

Robyn Gwilt
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/15/2005
  For my 2c worth, I agree with WS (we sometimes don't :) ) Everything on my gallery and website has been edited with Photoshop Elements 4, which has been totally adquate. I've also d/l PICASA from Google, but seldome use it now, as I know how to drive PSE4. I've just won PSE5 in a mag comp in South Africa, but haven't d/l it, but am looking forward to it. I've played around on CS, but as WS mentioned, its more for the graphics artist/designer, and I really feel that everything you need is in Elements 5. I've heard that PSE6 hasn't had the best reviews - don't know why?

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11/16/2007 10:59:04 PM

Linda M. Mishler
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/27/2007
  Thanks Robyn!That's good to know.I don't want my husband spending hundreds of dollars on a program that I wouldn't use most of.I'll check out Elements 5..anyone know why the bad reviews on 6??
By the way W...I looked at that link and there is a ton of stuff out there!!Wow!!Thanks!

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11/17/2007 7:41:18 AM

Ken Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/11/2005
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  I primarily use Elements 4.0, although I suspect ver 5 and 6 are similar. And Elements is much cheaper than Photoshop CS3, with many of the same editing capabilities. And there's great books out there on Elements...I've enjoyed Scott Kelby's book on Elements...easy to read, lots of tips, with color photos for examples.

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11/17/2007 3:33:17 PM

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