Illustrator vs Photoshop presents

Adobe Illustrator


Adobe Photoshop

Yeah, what’s the difference? If you are new to the graphic design industry, I totally understand your confusion. Welcome to the designer world. Illustrator and Photoshop are both very important tools in the graphic design process. 

As a graphic designer myself for more than eight years, I would say that Illustrator is the best for creating vector graphics and Photoshop is best for retouching images. But of course, there are so many other great features they provide for many different design purposes. 

In this article, you will learn more about what they are good for and when to use them. 

Well, believe me, using the wrong software can be quite frustrating. One simple click in one app might take ages in another. 

Ready to learn? Keep reading.

What is Adobe Illustrator?

You’d be surprised how many things you can do using Adobe Illustrator. It is a design software designers use for creating vector graphics, drawings, posters, logos, typefaces, presentations, and other artworks. Learn more about what you can do with AI from this article I wrote earlier.

What is Photoshop? 

Adobe Photoshop is a raster graphics editor widely used for manipulating images. From simple lighting adjustments to surreal photo posters. Seriously, you can do ANYTHING to the exciting image and turn it into something completely different. 

So, When to Use What? 

Now that you know some basics of what both software can do. It’s important to use the right tool at the right moment. 

When to Use Illustrator? 

Adobe Illustrator is best for creating vector graphics, such as logos, typography, and illustrations. Basically, anything you want to create from scratch. That’s why we love using Illustrator for branding design. 

If you need to print out your design, Illustrator is your top choice. It can save files in higher resolutions and also you can add bleeds. Bleeds are important for printing files so that you don’t cut off your actual artwork by mistake.  

It’s also great for creating infographics. It’s also easier to resize, align fonts and objects. 

You can also modify the existing vector graphic easily. For example, you can change icon colors, edit existing fonts, change shapes, etc. 

When you work on a simple one-page layout design, Illustrator is the go-to. It’s simple and clean without the stress of organizing layers. 

When to Use Photoshop?

Retouching photos is so much easier and faster in Photoshop. In just a few clicks and drags, you can adjust the brightness, tones, and other settings of your photos. You can also apply filters. 

Editing digital images in Photoshop works great as well. For example, if you want to remove something in the background, change background colors, or merge images, Photoshop is your best friend. 

It’s also great for creating mockups for a product or visual design presentations. You can show how a logo looks like on a T-shirt, on a package, etc.

For web design, many designers like to use Photoshop. When you create detailed photo-based web banners, Photoshop is ideal because the pixel image will be web-optimized. 

Illustrator vs. Photoshop: A Comparison Chart

Still confused about which one to get or too much info above? The simple comparison chart I made below should help you have a better understanding of Illustrator vs Photoshop. 

You can also get the monthly plan, or Annual Plan but paying the monthly bills. Anyway, choose what’s best for you based on your budget and workflow. 


Illustrator vs Photoshop: which one is better for a logo? 

The answer is Illustrator 99.99% of the time. Of course, you can create a logo in Photoshop but you cannot resize them without losing its quality. So it’s highly recommended to create logos in Illustrator. 

Illustrator vs Photoshop: which one is better for web design?

You can use both software for web design, however, in most cases, Photoshop is preferred for web banners. For pixel-based photo banners, I would say go ahead with Photoshop. 

Is Illustrator better than Photoshop?

It is better in terms of original freehand design and creativity. But it really depends on your work. If you are an illustrator, of course, you will find Adobe Illustrator much more useful. Same as if you are a photographer, you’ll for sure use Photoshop.

Which one is easier to use Illustrator or Photoshop?

Many people think that Photoshop is easier to start. It’s true that creating from scratch when you have no idea about the tools can be quite challenging. When you are in Photoshop, you are usually working on existing images, so yeah, it is easier.

Can you edit photos in Illustrator?

Technically you can edit photos in Illustrator. There are some effects and styles will you can apply to photos. However, it’s not the software designed for photo manipulation. It’s not recommended to use Illustrator for photo editing. 


Both Illustrator and Photoshop are essential for designers in different projects. In the end, most of us often need to integrate different software for the final project. Just keep in mind that using the right software for a specific purpose will optimize your time and work quality. 

Let them do what they are best at. 

About June Escalada
Graduated from Creative Advertising major, worked more than eight years as a graphic designer focusing in branding and Illustration. Yes, Adobe Illustrator is my best friend and I’m passionate about art and design.

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  • Siva

    Dear Escalada mam
    I read your graphic design article very useful for me

    • June Escalada

      Thanks Siva! Happy to hear 🙂

  • Parminder Singh

    Can a bill form or a visiting card or a letter head be made on illustrator ??

    • June Escalada

      For sure! All you have to do is choose the artboard size, and use the type tool to create.

  • dianne

    this was very helpful and addressed exactly what i was after. thank you.

    • June Escalada

      Hi Dianne,

      You’re welcome!