As a professor of Digital Media and having used Adobe Photoshop for almost 10 years - I can attest that Photoshop is the best image-manipulation software out there. Not one person in the graphics, advertising, information technology, or web development community can go without it. There's a reason why it's used and is well justified in its cost.

Two graphics programs come up within advertising/web communities - Photoshop or Illustrator (both by Adobe). If you're needing to work with something existing such as a photograph of your dog - you'd use Photoshop. If you were wanting to create a logo for a website - that's where Illustrator would come in handy.

Photoshop allows you to easily resize and/or crop your work and from there, decide how it's to be used - whether it be for print media or web development. If you have a photograph needing retouching like a crease or damage or an image suffering from overexposure, Photoshop is what'd you'd use. The print industry relies on Photoshop for fixing up images that might not be suitable for final output - adjusting resolution, colour space, or file format.

The program itself is huge in content. I've been using it for this long and still find little things when I'm teaching the program. For those who feel that length of time for mastery is an indication of good value - you'll get your monie's worth here. For new users, it's good to know that you don't have to necessarily take a course or read textbooks upon textbooks in order to use it. Simply by playing around can you find out the basic fundamentals. Menus and palettes are labelled well and is not intimidating to anyone who wouldn't consider themselves computer-savvy.

Photoshop is an extremely powerful program with lots to offer...with a hefty price tag of $600USD + - it definitely holds its worth. Personally, if you are into graphics and do this as a business you'd better offer investing in the Creative Suite. While I write this, Adobe Creative Suite CS4 is the current version out there.

Check it out for yourself - even going to the Adobe site ( to learn more about it or download a free 30-day trial. You will be blown away at what you can do...and do by yourself!