Adobe created both Illustrator and Photoshop, both are used for graphics and sometimes they can do some of what each can do. However, both Illustrator and Photoshop are best suited for different things. Photoshop is a raster graphics software and is best suited for editing, photo restorations, and other things that have to do with images that are already created. Illustrator is best used for creating new work and artwork for large projects.
When should I use Photoshop vs Illustrator?
Adobe Photoshop has to do with images that are made up of individual pixels. These images will become pixelated if stretched too much. Photoshop images can be made large by increasing the resolution or dpi when working on it, However the bigger the image the larger the file size and the more space it will take up on the computer.
Adobe Illustrator is a vector graphics software that is best for the creation of images and other designs. Vector graphics are made up of points, lines, curves, and shapes based on mathematical formulas. These images will not lose their quality whether they are stretched or shrunk. Illustrator files can be smaller because they are mathematically calculated by the computer so they can have smaller file sizes.
Illustrator vs Photoshop – Difference & Similarities
Both Illustrator and Photoshop are great graphic software. Photoshop is much easier to learn to use and is simpler to manipulate once you know the basics. The things that Photoshop is mainly used for are easier to do and are very similar to what you find in everyday use. Illustrator on the other hand is mainly used for more technical things and is a little harder to learn since it operates differently from what we are used to in everyday use.
When to use Illustrator
Illustrator is a vector graphics software that is best for the creation of images and other designs. Vector graphics are made up of points, lines, curves, and shapes based on mathematical formulas. These images will not lose their quality whether they are stretched or shrunk. Illustrator files can be smaller because they are mathematically calculated by the computer so they can have smaller file sizes.
Illustrator is best used for artwork like logos and anything that will need to be made larger or smaller. Illustrator artwork can be made as small as a logo or as large as a building wrap and anything in between. Vector images can fit any size large or small without losing any detail or quality. Illustrator is best for logos because a company’s logo will be used in many ways, including letterheads, business cards, billboards, and a vehicle wrap for the company’s fleet of trucks. All these will require the logo to be made big or small yet remain clear and readable to the public. Illustrator is best used for artwork that will be printed.
The above picture is an image showing a vector logo created in Illustrator. The logo has been resized three times yet it still looks clear.
When to use Photoshop
Photoshop is best used to edit images that have already been created. Photoshop can be used for photo retouching, enhancing photos, removing blemishes and unwanted items from photos, and making adjustments to damaged photos, Photoshop can be used to make art using photos, and make beautiful collages from photos.
Photoshop images are raster images and they handle precise edits better than vector images. Raster images are pixel-based and tend to have more detailed colors. This makes photoshop more suitable for images that will be displayed on a screen. This is so because screens have more vibrant colors and will display the colors better.
The above image is a raster image created with Photoshop. It has vibrant colors. However, if it is stretched, it will easily become pixelated.
Using both Illustrator and Photoshop together
Yes, you read the heading right, there are cases when you can use both Illustrator and Photoshop. together. In the first instance, you can turn a raster image into a vector image. You may have had a raster image like a logo or other image that you want to keep and use in a much larger format. You can use illustrator to make the raster image vector. Note that when you turn the raster image into a vector the image will no longer have that detailed color, however, the image will be able to stretch or shrink without looking pixelated.
The other way that both Illustrator and Photoshop can be used together is in the case where they can be used in different parts of a project. Both Photoshop and Illustrator files can be used in each other’s software. You may need a logo or other artwork to be placed on a Photoshop image.
How is Illustrator different From Photoshop?
Both Illustrator and Photoshop are well-known graphic software, however, they are very different Illustrator is best for vector-based art, artwork that needs to be able to be made into different sizes yet keep its quality. Photoshop is best for raster images, that is images that are made up of pixels that look more colorful but will get pixelated if stretched too much. Illustrator is best for artwork that will be printed while Photoshop is best for artwork that will be displayed on a screen. This does not mean that they cannot both be used for screen and print.
Read: Illustrator vs InDesign: When to use each one?
Can both Illustrator and Photoshop Artwork be used with each other?
Both Illustrator and Photoshop are made so that their artwork will work with each other. You can out an illustrator file in Photoshop and a Photoshop file in Illustrator. There will be cases where you will need to make artwork in one to use in the other because it may be easier to create in one over the other. For example, you may have to create a logo in illustrator to use in a Photoshop project or you may need to use a text effect or design a text in Photoshop to use in an Illustrator project.