Is Photoshop right for me?

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  • Updated 2 years ago
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I am an artist, and need photographs of my paintings to upload to my website. I used to use a photographer, but want to do it myself now. I have a Nikon d5300, I need to take pictures in raw, then save them as small jpeg with a drop shadow before uploading. Will Photoshop do that for me, and is it hard to learn? Thanks
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Posted 2 years ago

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Birck Cox

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I've been using PS for 25 years and I'm using the CC 2017 version right now. RAW is supported, and Drop Shadow is accessible under the Layers/ Layers style menu. The shadow is highly adjustable, but I'm in a poor position to comment on how difficult Photoshop is to learn. There are other, less expensive versions of Photoshop that may or may not have the same features (RAW and drop shadow); I don't use it for photos, but for building artwork, however, I have used RAW for  personal photos, and it works for me; and for me, now, it's all easy to use. For someone just picking it up: Well, it is pretty intuitive. More so than Illustrator.
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John Maguire

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As for what you want to do, PS is more than adequate and you could load your file and create a drop shadow in less than 3 steps. I'd suggest looking it up on youtube and see if you can follow it
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Max Johnson, Champion

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To answer the title question "Is Photoshop right for me?" I would have to say no. For what you are doing, it's like buying a workshop when you just need a screwdriver and hammer. Don't get me wrong, I love Photoshop, but if you only want to resize, add a drop shadow, and export, you will be better served with GIMP. Not because it is better or worse, but because it is free.

The big caveat would be that you'll need to use your Nikon or 3rd party RAW import/converter to save .tif files to open in GIMP since it does not natively support RAW formats. Neither does Photoshop, but the native RAW importer lets you open them as temporary files to edit and export without saving them to disk first.

You can download GIMP:

And search for tutorials on how to add a drop shadow:

If you find GIMP inconvenient or limiting, reconsider Photoshop.
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John Femino

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I do this all the time for painter friends.  I use On1 Photo Raw - retreat plug in and free standing program.  Will do many of the features of PS and LR.  Both Adobe and On1 will allow free trials of software.  You probably could use LR, especially if you do not need layers feature.  Most importantly, if you want to print pigmented ink reproductions on paper or canvas, you should check out calibration of monitor and printer as reproducing painting requires careful color matching.   If you are doing just uploading, then this is overkill.