I’ve been thrown for a bit of a loop by Adobe’s recent decision to make all future Photoshop releases available only through a $20 monthly Creative Cloud subscription.
Adobe, like most software companies, doesn’t like getting their revenue in periodic blobs. They would much rather even out the revenue stream. It makes it much easier to manage finances – for example, it may significantly reduce or even eliminate the need for interim borrowing. So, Adobe’s motivation for the change is clear.
For me, though, the necessity to permanently pay a monthly fee is painful. While I accept the necessity of telephone, internet and satellite TV(!) and, therefore, monthly billing by those vendors, I still think of my photography as more of a hobby than a necessity. I don’t want to be reminded, every month, that my hobby is up there with food, fuel, telephone, internet and TV in importance, when I tend to think of it more as an indulgence.
Now, I have recently bought Photoshop CS6 so I can probably use it for some time to come, as long as I can resist Adobe dangling neat new functionality in its Creative Cloud version, stuff that is not available in CS6.
An interesting option is to use Lightroom, particularly Version 5 which is now in Beta and which I have been using instead of Elements Organizer. First of all, the cataloging portion seems to do everything that Elements Organizer does. At least the pieces I use (I’m no power user though). But Lr5 is much more, since it includes a lot of post-processing tools that are really powerful, and which replace quite of bit of what I would normally be handing off to Elements Editor. It seems that Adobe is making Lr more powerful, perhaps to keep those of its customers who might be considering gravitating away from Photoshop CC to some competitors.
And there are competitors. For example, DPReview recently had an article entitled “10 Photo Editing Programs (that aren’t Photoshop)” perhaps responding to the backlash over Adobe’s Photoshop CC policy.
So, if you were me, what would you do? Use Lr5 plus CS6 (plus other interesting plug-ins)? Or do something entirely different? I’d really like to hear your suggestions.