Perceptions are fascinating. We believe them. We beat ourselves up over them.
And one of the most common misconceptions in the fashion world is that you have to know BOTH Photoshop AND Illustrator. Which can feel really overwhelming.
Photoshop does have a purpose, but it’s not sketching flats (or most other things we do).
Some people feel the opposite, not only loving Photoshop, but actually hating AI.
What I’ve discovered over the years is that your “go to” platform is usually the one you learned first. Doesn’t mean it’s the “right” one, it’s just the one you’re most comfortable in.
I was an AI junkie from day one.
PS should be used for photos (just look at the name: Photoshop), and AI should be used for pretty much everything else (except multi-page layouts – but that’s an entirely different discussion).
And while yes, you can do vector in PS, the process is miserable and doesn’t work as well as AI.
I’m perplexed when designers sketch fashion flats in PS. It boggles my mind because it’s not nearly as flexible or powerful as AI. It’s like trying to edit photos in Illustrator. Yes, you can do some photo editing in AI, but it’s a fight.
So let me spell it out loud and clear for you. Here are the tasks you should do in each platform.
I do 99% of my career related work in Illustrator. So if you’re looking for a fashion design job and it says Illustrator and Photoshop proficiency required, don’t worry about Photoshop. Here are two reasons why:
So just focus on Illustrator. I promise, it’s all you need.
And if you do want to see a few examples of when (and how) I use PS, here are three tutorials (notice, they all have a theme: editing raster / pixel based accents).
If you have a comp of embroidered artwork you want to mock up on your garments, you may need to cut out the background or change the colors. This tutorial will show you how (in both Illustrator and Photoshop).
Fashion designers are expected to do a lot – and sometimes that includes designing and developing labels, hangtags and packaging. This tutorial will show you some cool Illustrator tricks (and a little photoshop) to help you create / mock up a hangtag for your badass designs.
It’s super easy to create texture swatches in Photoshop and then bring them into Illustrator to fill your fashion flat sketches. This step by step video tutorial will show you how to.