Photoshop has been the program of choice for most artists who want to create top quality images for print media or for websites. It is a powerful tool that can do just about anything to a picture in the hands of a skilled artist. ImageReady can be considered as the little brother of photoshop. A lightweight tool that handles a smaller array of the most used editing functions in order to prepare a photo for web publishing.
Photoshop has been widely used in editing or ‘retouching’ photos. Photoshop has a wide array of effects and filters that, when applied to a picture, could produce an outcome that is better than the original. It is also not uncommon to use photoshop in splicing images together. You can make a picture of you standing beside the Eifel tower without ever setting foot in France. Photoshop can even be used to modify the look of a person in a photo, making them look better or worse than what they actually look like. This has caused some major incidents where magazines overzealously edit the pictures on their cover that it causes an outrage from the general public or even from the person featured in the cover.
ImageReady was not sold as a separate program and it came with the whole Adobe package. It can be considered as an extension of the capabilities of photoshop rather than as a separate entity itself. The most common use of ImageReady was in dealing with GIF animations, something that photoshop did not handle on its own. ImageReady was also the tool of choice when creating slices in images to use in web pages. Slices allow the web page maker to create different behavior in each slice; even to have each slice linked to a different webpage. Because of this ImageReady was often used by someone who is already using photshop. Adobe has even added a shortcut in photoshop to work with the image on ImageReady for convenience purposes.
Photoshop is a very powerful photo editing tool that can transform a photo into anything that the artist wishes. ImageReady is simply another tool in the photoshop arsenal that extends its capabilities even further. With Adobe Creative Suite 3, some of the features of ImageReady has been absorbed into photoshop while other tasks have been designated to Fireworks. Because of that, ImageReady has been discontinued for the foreseeable future. Some developers who prefer to use ImageReady have been advised to use CS2 instead.
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