Photoshop Elements or Fireworks CS4 for web design?

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by Mal, Oct 26, 2009.

  1. Mal macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #1
    I don't care for Photoshop and I don't have $500 to spend on it, so here's my dilemma:

    I used to have a copy of FireWorks MX 2004 that I used for web design. I loved it. I used it every day almost, and really enjoyed the way it worked. I would love to have it still, but it didn't really work well on my new computer, I don't have the box available anymore, and it was an educational license, so not really supposed to be used for commercial work anyways. I don't know if I would like FireWorks CS4 as much, but I can still get the upgrade (as long as I track down the old box and it works with the educational serial, not sure) for $149. Otherwise, it's $299, which is pushing my budget a bit more.

    I have also been told by several people I know that Photoshop Elements is a very simple solution but will also do just about everything I would need it to. I don't do animated gif's or anything like that, and I'd be either working with photos (compressing for web, resizing/cropping, simple stuff), so that I can't imagine being a big deal. The one thing I haven't looked into is how easy it is to create original images (for menus, headers, etc). The last version of Elements I used didn't really seem to have much in the way of that type of work.

    Any suggestions would be welcome. While I'm doing a commercial site here, I'm not planning this to be a huge business for me, just the occasional job, so I don't really need the best of the best, just good enough.

    jW
     
  2. Angelo95210 macrumors 6502a

    Angelo95210

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2009
    Location:
    Paris, France
    #2
    Are you sure to need Photoshop for this ? Anyway did you look at Gimp ? Free and very powerful... Look at Seashore as well.

    But I m not sure to understand what you really want to do... Maybe you should describe you needs a little bit better ?
     
  3. Mal thread starter macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #3
    I have the Gimp, and it works ok, but I'm not really liking it's interface and I have trouble arranging things and working with text, it's just not intuitive to me. I could probably get by, but I can also take some of the money I'm getting for this job and go ahead and buy a tool that's a bit easier to use.

    jW
     
  4. Angelo95210 macrumors 6502a

    Angelo95210

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2009
    Location:
    Paris, France
    #4
    IMO I think you should find a used copy of PS3. I mean if it's going to be your job it's worth it. You can still try alternatives but -you know- there is nothing better.

    I design websites with a text editor and PS3. But maybe you have different needs, that's why -as I don't know Fireworks- I asked what features you need.
     
  5. Mal thread starter macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #5
    Might work, but I've never really cared for Photoshop, seems overkill. This isn't going to be my job, I have a regular 9-6 job, this is an extra project, and I don't expect it to be all that common that I'll do these, which is why I don't want to put a ton of money into the tools.

    I know I haven't explained myself real well, but I'm just looking at something which could handle the needs of a fairly basic web designer, but is also fairly easy to use.

    Oh, and I'd like to have it by Thursday, which makes getting a used copy of CS3 a bit more difficult, though that's not 100% required. I'm leaving the country Friday morning, and I'd like to have it installed by then.

    jW
     
  6. Angelo95210 macrumors 6502a

    Angelo95210

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2009
    Location:
    Paris, France
    #6
    Yeah PS3 is a killer app with too many features for most of us. I probably don't use not even 10% of the potential. The good thing is you can keep it for life as long as you progress, because it's so powerful.

    So did you get a look at Seashore ? Or look at the application post on "best graphic applications" (or sthg like that)

    And for coding I recommend Textwrangler. It's free.
     
  7. Mal thread starter macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #7
    Yeah, I have Seashore, but I also found it limiting or at least not intuitive to me. It's a nice tool to have around occasionally, but not something I want to use for my everyday work.

    I just downloaded the trial of Photoshop Elements, will give it a try and see if it does what I need it to do.

    jW
     
  8. besler3035 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI
    #8
    Personally, I use Fireworks for 99% of my web design work. It's a great program, simple to use, and can do things more quickly than Photoshop can, in my opinion.
     
  9. beg_ne macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2003
    #9
    Fireworks is actually an excellent graphics program for web work since thats the whole reason it was created.

    You should be able to find demos for Fireworks, PSE, and you could also give Pixelmator a try(the latest update added a web slices feature) try those out and see what works best.
     
  10. B-Ryan macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2009
    Location:
    Chicago
    #10
    I'm a front end web developer and also used fireworks for years.. BUT, I have found that it downgrades images and QA will kick back the work. The only way for me to get a crisp/clean gradient on transparent gif is to "save for web" in photoshop. Also, Photoshop is industry standard. With that said, suppose you get a psd from a client. You try to open it up in another program, and loose all the layer filters. Sometimes the layer groupings are not correct in the other programs. I would suggest you purchase a copy of Photoshop
     

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