Hi, my name is Andrey and I’m a Photoshop addict.
It’s been my weapon of choice for 12 years, but why not to have two guns in your holsters instead of one? Adobe has plenty of tools in the box and it’s up to you to decide which one is the right to do the job. And it’s better to choose the proper one, not the familiar one. Yes, you can still make some not-so-complicated print stuff in Photoshop, but InDesign suits is better for it. You can create vector graphics in it, but Illustrator is more powerful. As I have mostly created UI design for the last few years now I’m feeling like a roofer that uses a carpenters hammer completely ignoring the existence of a nail gun.
Fireworks was created for web design as it’s always been, but now it requires less effort to switch to it from Photoshop and it became more stable as it never was. I’ve tried it previously when it was a Macromedia product and it struck me as very flimsy and almost unusable comparing to Photoshop. I never dug deep enough in it then, but the first impression was: “Why the hell this thing exists and who is using it anyway? Flash — cool, Freehand (RIP) — awesome, but what is Fireworks for when you can use Photoshop?”. Now the answer is clear — if you are doing a lot of wireframing, have more than, say, 3 pages in your project and going to iterate back and forth for dozens of times (we are all hoping to have a home run from the first try, but let’s face the facts) it’s the right tool for you.
No one left behind
“But what about my beloved Photoshop?”, you ask. Should I stop using it? One thought about giving up my old friend makes me cry! Well, you shouldn’t. No withdrawal is coming, my fellow addicts — you can have your Photoshop fix whenever you want and use Fireworks right after or vice-versa if you are doing everything right.
So, what’s next?
In the next few posts I’m going to show you not how to switch to Fireworks, but add this tool to your arsenal and enhance your design firepower by holding it next to Photoshop in the other hand.There are quite a few articles around comparing PS and FW (1, 2, 3, 4, 5) and I’ll try not to write another one and just focus on practical hints of PS to FW transition assuming that you’ve already made your choice and decided to try Fireworks without saying farewell to Photoshop.