Is Dreamweaver and Photoshop all I need?

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by monjones, Apr 14, 2009.

  1. monjones macrumors member

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    Houston, TX
    #1
    Hi,

    I'm planning to design and build a website for my business. I am thinking of buying Dreamweaver to code it and Photoshop to do the graphical design. In terms of software, is this all I need?

    I'm not planning to make the site media rich, but I am looking for flexibility in design (hence I don't want to use something like iWeb) and I want a high quality finish. I realize it'll take me some time to get to grips with these packages but I don't want to find I'm limited by software features.

    Is there any other software that I am likely to need that I need to budget for or will these two cover the basics?

    Thanks.
     
  2. ezekielrage_99 macrumors 68040

    ezekielrage_99

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    Oct 12, 2005
    #2
    I use Photoshop, Rapidweaver, Espresso, Coda/CSSEdit and Textwrangler and it seem to work for me.
     
  3. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #3
    You could buy Photoshop and Dreamweaver, but you could also do the same thing with free (or at least less expensive) software. ezekiel has some good recommendations. You could also look into (for photoshop) GIMP or GraphicConverter and (for DW) BBEdit, Textmate, or Taco HTML.
     
  4. ezekielrage_99 macrumors 68040

    ezekielrage_99

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2005
    #4
    I just found with the last version of Dreamweaver I could do the same thing with 3 products that cost less than USD$100, although I did get Dreamweaver I haven't used it much (kind of a waste really)...
     
  5. Cromulent macrumors 603

    Cromulent

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    #5
    Seconded. Although I would suggest Smultron over the text editors mentioned above.
     
  6. Angelo95210 macrumors 6502a

    Angelo95210

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    Paris, France
    #6
    I only use BBEdit and PS, which you can easily replace by Gimp.

    I reckon you should give a try to Textwrangler (free version of BBedit) and Gimp.
     
  7. angelwatt Moderator emeritus

    angelwatt

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    USA
    #7
    In addition I also recommend getting a browser ;) If you need to do some cross browser checking you'll want to have Firefox and Safari on hand and maybe Opera. For testing IE you can get Parallels or another virtual product that lets you run IE and test pages. There's some stuff, like CrossOver that can run IE on Mac, but it's not 100% reliable, but may be good enough for you.

    You may also want a dedicated FTP program (I use Cyberduck), though some of the HTML editors have this functionality built-in, but personally I still like having a dedicated app for it. You may also want to look into a version control system like Subversion, which you can do a local setup for.

    For me I just use BBEdit and Gimp, Cyberduck, and Subversion as my setup, which is all free because my work bought BBEdit for me, otherwise I could get by with TextWrangler.
     
  8. monjones thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 24, 2008
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    Houston, TX
    #8
    Thanks very much to everyone for your input - it was well worth asking the question as this is going to save me a lot of $$$! I'm exploring all the suggestions.

    I'll almost certainly ditch the idea of getting Dreamweaver. But I'm still wondering about Photoshop. I see some of you use it, and I'm wondering what features you are using that you can't use Gimp for. I downloaded Gimp and it seems great, so I'll give it a go, but I'm just interested to know what limitations you ran into to make you opt for Photoshop.
     
  9. Cromulent macrumors 603

    Cromulent

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    #9
    Photoshop has quite a few advantages, not least the huge number of tutorials available for it all over the web. Plus it does integrate very nicely with the other Adobe apps. The question is, if you can do the vast majority of the stuff that you want to do in GIMP is it really worth buying Photoshop? That is a question only you can answer really.
     
  10. monjones thread starter macrumors member

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    #10
    Thanks. I must admit that it is all the tutorials I found online for Photoshop that are really drawing me to the product. It's seems pretty straightforward to create designs that look really good - but I realize that the things I'm looking at probably use only a tiny fraction of what Photoshop is capable of. But of course I'd rather use a free application than spend $650, so I'll look around for some for GIMP tutorials to see what it can do and experiment for a while.
     
  11. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #11
    You could also try Pixelmator, some people like that as a PS alternative.
     
  12. Cromulent macrumors 603

    Cromulent

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    #12
    Start with these:

    http://www.gimp.org/tutorials/

    http://docs.gimp.org/en/
     
  13. pelsar macrumors regular

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    Apr 29, 2008
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    israel
    #13
    an alternative....

    use a wordpress template for your design, learn CSS to modify it

    that means you have to buy only photoshop (or something similer, since you wont need 90% of photoshops tools).

    you'll need a pseudo server on your computer: MAMP

    and a program to upload to your server: Cyberduck (or similar)
     
  14. Tomorrow macrumors 604

    Tomorrow

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    #14
    If your goal is web design and not photography, you might get more use out of Fireworks than Photoshop.
     
  15. thunderweb macrumors 6502

    thunderweb

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    #15
    Agreed, I get much more use out of Fireworks for web design than I do out of PS. I'm not into the major photography aspect of it yet so it works perfectly for me. It's also pretty easy to learn.
     
  16. SrWebDeveloper macrumors 68000

    SrWebDeveloper

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    #16
    One little thing as to GIMP, and please someone correct me if I am wrong, but I recall someone mentioning somewhere that opening 16 bit Adobe PSD files often results in layers being lost or scrambled. If this is true, the reason I mention it here is you want to be able to easily import to customize or optimize the graphics for web use if a client sent you that very commonly used format. This is not justification alone to buy Adobe PS, I'm just throwing this into the mix if you deal with sub-contracted designers often.

    -jim
     
  17. monjones thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 24, 2008
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    Houston, TX
    #17
    Wow... the more I learn, the more I realize how little I know!

    You're right that what I want to do is more web design than photography stuff. Basically, I want to be able to create good looking banners, menus, backgrounds, icons etc. that don't necessarily look like they have been made from a template. It's kind of hard to know what do go with.

    I don't think I'm up for coding a site from scratch, so Rapidweaver seems like a good bet. But if I want to create my own design style and theme that doesn't rely on a pre-made template, will Fireworks do the trick and will it be easier trying to do this in GIMP? Will Rapidweaver and Fireworks work together? I'm getting kind of overwhelmed with all the options and it's kind of hard to tell what some of these packages really do. Thank you for being patient with me!
     
  18. thunderweb macrumors 6502

    thunderweb

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    #18
    Thats usually the way things work... :rolleyes: I have no experience with Rapidweaver and only a little with GIMP but Fireworks should do exactly what your looking for. I have created many many banners, logos ect.. in Fireworks and it is by far my most used program out of CS3 & CS4. If you don't want the step learning curve of PS I'd go with Fireworks. The export CSS & HTML option is the CS4 version is great for designing and importing right into Dreamweaver.
     

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