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For all the PS 2015 hate, remember there are alternatives

over 4 years ago from , Señor Designer

While they aren't as crazy powerful as Photoshop for complete image editing, they do offer most of the basic features we use photoshop for in the first place. Image retouching, levels, background separation, etc.

Affinity Designer is a pretty solid, lightweight program and is only $39.99.

Pixelmator seems to be really great at all of the photo manipulation stuff as well and is only $29.99.

Combine using these with Sketch for UI design, and you may have what you're looking for.

42 comments

  • Account deleted over 4 years ago

    MS Paint

    21 points
  • John PJohn P, over 4 years ago

    For the digital painting side:

    5 points
  • Marc EdwardsMarc Edwards, over 4 years ago

    There are definitely alternatives, but there’s also (unfortunately) a long list of mandatory features required for professional screen design. I realise everyone’s needs are different, but all things considered, I have pretty much only one choice.

    For image editing, I do like Acorn. It’s definitely not a UI design tool though.

    1 point
    • Sacha GreifSacha Greif, over 4 years ago

      Everybody only uses 10% of Photoshop's features and thinks it wouldn't be that hard to extract out these 10% into their own brand new app.

      Problem is, everybody uses a different 10%…

      6 points
    • Steve HickeySteve Hickey, over 4 years ago

      Still, the fact that we can even realistically contemplate options at this time is kind of amazing in itself. 5 years ago, the idea that I could do effective UI design outside of Photoshop seemed ludicrous.

      Looking forward to adding Skala to my list of options ;)

      0 points
  • Vasil EnchevVasil Enchev, over 4 years ago

    Theres also one for iPad coming soon :) http://protosketch.co/

    1 point
  • Matt DowneyMatt Downey, over 4 years ago

    Or you could always switch back to previous versions using Creative Cloud (which I am currently doing): http://cl.ly/beb1

    1 point
    • bradee evansbradee evans, over 4 years ago

      what's the main irritation?

      0 points
      • Anthony Collurafici, over 4 years ago

        I still love PS, it has paid my bills for over 14 years! One feature I would love to see is custom nudge settings. This is extremely useful if you are working on an 8px base grid like Material Design. There is defiantly a demand for it, I built nudg.it for sketch and there were over 1300 downloads in a few weeks.

        5 points
        • Charles PearsonCharles Pearson, over 4 years ago

          Custom nudge settings would be sweet, and its a request that comes up often. Time to put renewed emphasis on it. Thanks!

          3 points
        • John PJohn P, over 4 years ago (edited over 4 years ago )

          These are absolutely basic requirements in design software in any other industry.

          Adobe ignores them… literally a preference pane of floats listing all the snap/nudge values and a "Reset to Default" button……… barely an hours work.

          "nah can't be bothered coding any of that why can't people just shift it 10 pixels and then nudge it back a bit"

          1 point
          • Sacha GreifSacha Greif, over 4 years ago

            Writing comments like "barely an hours work" when it comes to a 20-year-old codebase like Photoshop makes you look very ignorant.

            13 points
            • John PJohn P, over 4 years ago (edited over 4 years ago )

              20 year old codebase

              And bringing that up time after time like it isn't entirely their fault is just stupid.

              Every CAD design tool has this... Every 3D design tool has this... and yet they haven't implemented it in 20 years and expect to be taken seriously as a design tool.

              I mean it made sense when Photoshop was just a photo editing tool but Adobe keeps telling us it's a screen design tool so maybe they should start acting like it is one.

              0 points
          • bradee evansbradee evans, over 4 years ago

            Adobe? I actually work on this product. It's my passion and my job. I am a designer too. These are things I want too.

            It's hard to read comments like yours and not reply.

            But I'll leave you with this:

            When you start working on software that's 25 years old and that set the standard for design software-- you quickly learn to check your hubris and your assumptions about how that software gets made at the door.

            7 points
        • Samantha S, over 4 years ago

          Where can I learn more about nudge? Thx

          0 points
      • Matt DowneyMatt Downey, over 4 years ago

        For me, it was speed. I opened a file that I was working on yesterday and PS CC 2015 crawled. I mean, to the point where my computer started breaking down and fighting against me. Not a good scene.

        I tend to be on the bleeding edge of adoption and I understand the buggy nature of new software. But if the software (new or not) can't react to the speed of my workflow, I've got to go back to what works.

        1 point
        • bradee evansbradee evans, over 4 years ago

          That sounds like a fixable bug. Would you be ok sending me the file?

          1 point
          • Matt DowneyMatt Downey, over 4 years ago

            I wish I could, but this particular file is a sensitive one under NDA. I appreciate you trying to help though, maybe I'll give CC 2015 another go in a few months after the dust settles. :)

            0 points
      • Louis-André LabadieLouis-André Labadie, over 4 years ago

        For me, it's that Asset Generator has been almost entirely yanked out. It means I can't have a PSD that generates several assets for my developers. I'd be back to doing it all by hand.

        This is a complete no-go, and an extremely frustrating setback.

        2 points
        • Bruno BarrosBruno Barros, over 4 years ago

          I find that infuriating as well. I mean, there's no way to export in multiple resolutions now?

          1 point
          • Louis-André LabadieLouis-André Labadie, over 4 years ago

            No, none! It's a bit insane, considering how much they preached the generator.

            2 points
            • Bruno BarrosBruno Barros, over 4 years ago

              I still can't believe they ditched the Asset Extract feature. There might be something we're not seeing.

              2 points
              • Jonathan LevyJonathan Levy, over 4 years ago (edited over 4 years ago )

                So glad to see that i'm not the only one to really not understand what they've done with the extract tool, which was awesomely great. I think we're missing something too, they just can't have throw this thing away...

                1 point
                • bradee evansbradee evans, over 4 years ago

                  Generator still works! We haven't pitched it! You just need to label the layers just like always. Then enable generate assets. The team that worked on export heard waves of irritation regarding the layer renaming-- so they are taking a step back to simplify and focus that feature.

                  2 points
                  • Brian HintonBrian Hinton, over 4 years ago

                    I was wondering what everyone was talking about...since it was working for me.

                    I think something like this would improve the flow:

                    Select multiple layers Right click in layers list Choose mark for export from menu Dialog opens with options User chooses select png, and @2x, @3x, @1x sizes Left click ok The labels are added to the layers for export.

                    0 points
                  • Louis-André LabadieLouis-André Labadie, over 4 years ago

                    Wooooah really? That'd be amazing news.

                    By "label", do you mean naming layers like always? Because layers that end in .jpg right now just export with whatever format is the default. We end up with assetname.jpg.png :(

                    And by Generate Assets, do you mean checking "Generate → Image Assets"? It doesn't seem to change anything, and all generation features are now otherwise named "Export" instead.

                    Here's an actual video of where I hit the dead end. I try to export both with and without the "image assets" option.

                    Naming layers once is a very minor inconvenient in comparison to manually selecting every layer to be exported every time I want to export them.

                    0 points
      • Jared KrauseJared Krause, over 4 years ago

        Haven't had any problems so far. I'm sure there are the occasional bugs but people really just like to complain.

        0 points
  • Mahdi FarraMahdi Farra, over 4 years ago

    They're all just tools, it's just a matter of which does the job quicker and more efficient, I guess, or at least that's the case for me.

    I use Sketch for UI design and creating quick wireframes, but when it comes to editing photos or doing some rough sketches I use Photoshop with my Wacom, which works like magic.

    1 point
  • ポール ウェッブポール ウェッブ, over 4 years ago

    I have the first two apps (paid!!), but never took the time to learn them. I feel like I should, but I also use After Effects and Premiere Pro, so I won't be leaving CC anytime soon.

    1 point
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    0 points
  • Robert PaigeRobert Paige, over 4 years ago

    Gimp

    0 points
  • Laurens SpangenbergLaurens Spangenberg, over 4 years ago

    Acorn is also a great photo manipulation tool for OS X. It contains non-destructive filters unlike Pixelmator if you ever need them.

    0 points
    • Nathan HueningNathan Huening, over 4 years ago

      Pixelmator's filters are non-destructive.

      0 points
      • Laurens SpangenbergLaurens Spangenberg, over 4 years ago

        Pixelmator's Layer Styles (adding a fill or shadow to a layer) are non-destructive, but the filters (brightness, saturation, etc.) aren't.

        The copy to the release notes for Pixelmator 3.0 seems to confusingly suggest that they do have them. The comments to the release notes of the last update also say that Pixelmator still doesn't have them, although a developer said that they're working on it.

        Source: I own Pixelmator.

        0 points
  • awais afzal132, over 4 years ago

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    0 points
  • Brian HintonBrian Hinton, over 4 years ago (edited over 4 years ago )

    If you really use Photoshop's full potential neither of those options come even close. (keep in mind I own, and occasionally will use both)

    ie. Layer comps, Smart objects, Smart objects in smart objects, gif editing and animation, advanced photo manipulation (de-haze, focused blur controls, removing motion blurring, etc.)

    I'd compare Affinity Designer/Photo, and Pixelmator to Photoshop in this mindset:

    Photoshop = a garage full of tools

    Affinity = a Dremel with different bits for various tasks

    Pixelmator = a teens first toolbox

    0 points