I was thinking about this…
Is it smart to post this, or should I just keep quiet…..
Well I think it’s not smart to do this, but I’m doing it anyway.
Recently on Petapixel there was an article that discussed the Creative Cloud.
As many of you know Adobe switch over to a subscription based system a few years back.
For me as a pro this has a lot of benefits.
More upgrades, more free apps, fonts, brushes etc.
And of course cloudstorage.
All for a very reasonable price of on average 10.00 a month for the photography plan.
When it was announced at Photoshop World most responses were very positive.
Now don’t get me wrong
Although I’m an Adobe influencer (let’s get that out of the way immediately) they don’t own me or my words, so everything I post here is 100% my own personal opinion, not sponsored or even asked for by Adobe, in fact I don’t even think this article will ever be read by someone with Adobe.
Let me start by saying that although I love Photoshop and Lightroom I’m also (like many of you) sometimes frustrated by the speed of Lightroom. I’m running a very fast PC (and before that Mac) and Lightroom Classic is faster than before but building a 1:1 preview is still a lot faster in Capture One. Also I think it’s just plain “dumb” to not support Sony for tethering. Also the hotfolder solution if you want to use Lightroom for tethering is very slow and in fact unusable.
That being said.
Lightroom has gotten a huge performance boost a while ago that made it a lot faster on my machines, it’s not Capture One fast, but it now at least is not a waiting game anymore. But there are also bugs, and with a suite as extensive as Creative Cloud and also the development of their apps it’s impossible to have a bug free environment, that’s why it’s always wise to just wait a few days before upgrading to a new version.
Let’s look at what I use and love.
For me working with Lightroom CC is a dream.
We travel a lot and I also love to use my phone for photography, with an unlimited dataplan on my phone Lightroom CC is awesome. Everything you shoot is in the cloud and can be edited on my iPad or in Lightroom CC on the desktop, but (and a lot of people don’t know this) you can also sync Lightroom CC in classic, in a separate folder. So what I do is upload everything on the road in the cloud and edit, when I’m home I start Lightroom Classic and get all my images including adjustments into my catalogue, you don’t want to know how I love that and how much time and hassle that saves me during travels. In fact the last year we started travelling with a laptop but just an iPad pro, what a delight and only possible thanks to the Creative Cloud.
Now I earn money with photography so paying 10-40 a month is something that is tax deductible and in essence it costs you half as an entrepreneur.
Is it really expensive?
No not really for what you get.
We pay more for our accounting software on a yearly basis than for the complete creative cloud, and creative cloud at least is fun.
Also when you would switch to capture one (what a lot of people seem to think about), let me start by saying Capture One is awesome, previews are amazingly fast, we have focus overlay and tethering is stable and fast and supports a lot of cameras, but…. (and I always say everything before but is BS) you also pay a subscription if you want to stay up to date or you pay a considerable amount of money each year for your upgrade. What you get is a very solid and stable software solution, but it’s very crippled compared to lightroom for catalogue work (smart albums, map module (yes I use that all the time for travel stuff) etc.) for retouching it’s slightly better than Lightroom but cloning is more confusing.
Meaning when you want to do real work… well both lightroom and Capture One are nothing compared to Photoshop.
Now if you have hours to spend, sure you can do it without Photoshop but I’m at least 5x faster in Photoshop than in both Lightroom and Capture one, plus smoothing a background is impossible in Lightroom or Capture One without a very frustrating and time consuming process, in Photoshop I can do it in under a minute via layers and selections.
So let’s see if we compare CC photography to Capture One we end up at around the same yearly costs, if you want to stay updated, and you better because you can bet your life on it that when you buy a new camera in 2-3 years time it’s not supported by the 2020 version of Capture One or Lightroom. So in the end you have to anyway.
Research and development
Often people forget this, but it’s vital.
When you have a steady income revenue you are able to progress in your research and development, plus if everything is in the cloud, updates can be pushed to the consumers every second instead of once a year or a semi update every 6 months. Remember this? paying 600.00 for an in-between update? but if you didn’t you would pay full price by the next release ?
There are software makers that promise free updates life long.
Please, wake up, this is not possible.
No company can run without income.
At one point the market is saturated with that first boom/explosion of sales. Of course the first year they sell a boat load of software, but the second year it will level out and the third year only a few people will buy it, so how can you promise LIFE long upgrades if there is no income from that software anymore? Maybe they will add some bug fixes but figuring out new RAW conversions or adding new features all take hours and hours of work done by a whole team… and how do you pay those people without income, and also crossplatform, wow I would love to see their predictions for the future, but I think it would mean don’t every upgrade your device or camera and we make sure that what you have now keeps working. What would mean that in 3 years time android, iOs, Windows and Mac are on a different OS and your software still runs fine… but not on the new hard/software. But at least your bugs are fixed right?
It’s not that rosy as you think, and trust me I’ve seen it before with software like Lucis Art where I shelved out a considerable amount of money for life long support (and we talk about a lot of money) only to be greeted 1 year later with the message, “we will not support 64bits systems, just stay at 32 bits” excuse me….. so that was money down the drain. But to be expected, but I’m never gonna fall for that again.
Now my views are my views but I do want to address some things I saw in that post that really make me sick to my stomach.
“I only edit jpgs and don’t need all that BS that Adobe forces down my throat”
Well simple, don’t use pro software if you don’t need it, there you go free advice.
You can use Gimp, Photoeditor from Windows or Mac there are plenty of free solutions.
“I lost a years work thanks to Adobe”
No you are to blame and it’s ridiculous to blame a company because YOU forgot to make backups. Adobe is NOT responsible for your own stupidity if you don’t backup, it’s the first thing you should do, everything you want to save or keep or love, backup.
“I work on a sat connection and uploading every image before I can edit it takes forever and kills my data, plus I can’t open Photoshop without logging into CC, plus sometimes I have to wait for hours because Adobe automatically updates”
You wonder if they even have CC?
Or just love to hear themselves talk.
First off all, you don’t have to (and never had to) upload images before editing, that’s just insane and ridiculous to even think that, even when using Lightroom CC you don’t have to. You can edit your images without any internet connection, now if you want to do it crossplatform yep… now you need internet. But if you work with Photoshop there is nothing you have to upload, we often travel and my laptop is often without internet and it always worked flawlessly with the complete suite.
Also there is no automatic updates, updates you can find in the CC app, and YOU can choose when or even IF you update, some people stay on the old version for weeks or months, Adobe doesn’t force you to update, it’s all up to you when.
There were a lot more but most are just bashing the writer and adobe.
Guys it’s very simple.
For the price of one starbucks visit a month you have cloudstorage, Lightroom CC and Photoshop. The industry standard with loads of mobile apps, weekly updates (if you chose to), loads of videos online to learn and very active forums.
If you don’t need pro software, don’t use it, it’s simple
I think however that a lot of the hate comes from people that used to have pirated copies of Photoshop which now of course don’t work anymore, or they bought second hand software which is now outdated.
I’ve visited all the Photoshop Worlds and saw all the Adobe keynotes and can only say one thing, for the price you pay you get a boat load of features and support and they keep adding new things, think about the growth Lightroom CC on iOs and Android has made, from useless to fully replacing my laptop when travelling. And look at Photoshop for iOs, at the moment it’s very fast and stable, but lacks a LOT of features, however I think it’s very smart to do it this way, learn to use it as it is, and add feature by feature this way you learn with progress and most importantly for the development team it stays much easier to not build on bugs, by releasing small updates in cycles it’s easier to find and kill bugs before they become part of the program and you have to make solutions around it, it will take longer but I think in 2-3 years we have a much better Photoshop on iOs than if it would have been released all at once.
If you want to be angry at a company be angry at for example dropbox.
Where adobe keeps adding things dropbox literally destroyed part of my workflow. We have a large dropbox because we got a lot of friends in and for years this was our main hub, without any form of “you have it you keep it” they switched to 3 devices max, which is incredibly stupid seeing most people already have more (laptop, desktop, tablet, phone) so dropbox is forcing you to get a subscription that (again) is more expensive than creative cloud, and with CC you already get cloud storage.
For the love of whatever, I really can’t see why Adobe is overpriced for 10.00 a month, really I can’t.
We use photography and video on a daily basis.
Thanks to lightroom Classic I’m able to find images really fast thanks to smartalbums and keywording.
If I want to know where I shot something I love using the map module.
Photoshop makes it possible to edit my images really fast and is compatible with all the plugins I love like Exposure software, Luminar, Imagenomic, Topaz and DxO
Lightroom CC is becoming my favorite over the last few months for everything mobile.
When it was Lightroom Mobile I never really used it for longer periods, but since CC works different (and we now have steady and fast internet) it’s now becoming my main hub for travelling and when I want images from my mobile device to the PC/Mac.
Cloud storage is enough to cover a full two weeks travel with photos, meaning I don’t have to worry about backups anymore.
Thanks to Adobe and the connectivity I don’t have to drag my laptop with me anymore and everything is automatically backupped and ready for me edited and all when I’m home, just drag it to the right folders on my DAS and I’m done.
Is it perfect, heck no.
Lightroom CC misses the rename functions which I still think is insane, but I do understand why it’s not working (cloud syncing would be needed when renaming images), but at least give the option when importing images.
Is it solvable?
Well it wasn’t until I contacted the guys from filebrowser on iOs and they listened to what I think a lot of people wanted and they added within a few weeks a batch rename function. In combination with the new iOs13 “open” structure (talk about not delivering what you promise Apple) it’s a very workable solution. It’s not perfect but at least it’s better than dragging my laptop with me just for renaming files.
Why hate on a company that delivers PRO software for 10.00 a month?
If you don’t need it… don’t use it.
If you can’t afford 10.00 a month….. you probably also can’t afford that new lens that retails for 1000.00 but is only slightly better than the one you already have.
Look I get it, trust me (I’m Dutch)
I HATE paying money for software or subscriptions, in fact it took me a while before we subscribed to Netflix, but it’s the best thing we ever did, we now even have prime and disney+ it’s a mindset thing.
Adobe in my opinion delivers more than you pay for (A lot more), is it perfect…. heck no (tell me one company that is)
If you don’t need it, don’t do it, but please stay reasonable.
Loads of people couldn’t afford Photoshop when it was sold for 1000.00 and up, now for 10.00 a month they can and they even get a lot more extra.
Yes I know it’s frustrating that Lightroom isn’t sold separately anymore, but again 10.00 for the photography plan is about 120.00 a year.
Lightroom was priced I believe just under 100.00 (don’t remember) thus for 20.00 more you now have so much more.
Of course you can “complain” about everything and luckily we live in a free world.
But I also wanted to write this to maybe shed some more softer light on it.
KEEP IT CIVIL in the comments.