Graphics design has become one of the best technical skills to enrich your resume. The growing demand has led to an increase in the potential career feasibility of a graphics designer. As such, there is no shortage of suitable hardware and software that can aid the graphical operations. And the increasing computing capabilities have also played a significant role in the development of graphic designing software. Adobe Illustrator is one such program that can aid a graphic designer in creating some of the best print and web graphics.
Furthermore, the Adobe brand enjoys a legacy that is even older than the internet. However, not everything is good about the software. Every coin has two sides. Hence, we are here to explore both the advantages and disadvantages of Adobe Illustrator.
Introduction to Adobe Illustrator
In simple words, Adobe Illustrator is a creative tool inclined toward graphics design. The software was initially designed for the Apple Macintosh, and its development started way back in 1985. However, it is not limited by macOS. This vector graphics editor and design software is a popular choice across different operating systems. Unlike other graphics software, Adobe Illustrator isn’t reliant on bitmap images for data storage. Rather, it uses algorithms to create shapes. Hence, its vector-based nature. Due to this, the images created by Illustrator are not only scalable without any resolution loss but also ensure intact quality.
Adobe Illustrator is fully capable of creating detailed shapes, animated concepts, brand logos, and web design. It can also print layouts and allows users to gain total control of the image topography. The following article will discuss the various pros and cons of Adobe Illustrator.
Advantages of Adobe Illustrator
Given below are a few advantages of using Adobe Illustrator.
First off, the software is very user-friendly as it offers a UI that can get navigated easily. Furthermore, it allows for an extra level of flexibility while working. The UI also offers custom viewing and a space-saving function. Hence, users can expertise total control while being comfortable.
Another benefit is the in-panel editing that saves users a bunch of time. In-panel allows for using multiple artboards simultaneously. As a result, the user can focus on more than one image at any given time. It increases productivity as the user is no longer bound to one project at a time.
One of the best features of Adobe Illustrator is that it works with vector images. Thus, there is no chance of resolution loss. As such, scalability becomes one of the biggest achievements for the software as the user no longer has to spend additional resources towards repurposing images. The generated graphics are a result of mathematical equations instead of stored pixels. Thus, the resultant images are in sharp, crisp lines that are print ready.
Compatible with almost any system
While we agree that Adobe Illustrator is resource heavy, it can get installed on almost any computing system. Be it Windows or macOS, the software can work on both OSes. As long as the user has an older top-of-the-line system and an up-to-date operating system, they can get Adobe Illustrator working on the PC. However, the software doesn’t work properly on mobile devices.
Print and Web graphics creation
Adobe Illustrator can create print and web graphics thanks to vector integration. These graphics are print-ready and web-ready, scalable, and offer no resolution loss. The software works in any screen resolution and offers a toolset that can create vector images. The toolset is also regularly updated, making the user a pro in print and web graphics design.
Small file sizes
Lastly, the files created using Adobe Illustrator are not enormous. Rather, the software generates small-size files that can get transferred easily. Other similar tools do not offer the same benefits. Furthermore, the files from Adobe Illustrator can be emailed due to their small size, or stored locally, without taking much space.
Disadvantages of Adobe Illustrator
Similarly, the software also comes with its fair share of disadvantages, which are as follows:
As we already know with other Adobe products, Illustrator too is a resource hungry tool that lags in the absence of computing space. Users running multiple programs and software are more likely to experience this delay. And at times users can also experience the “Not Responding Error” if you try to run multiple Adobe Illustrator windows. You are more prone to experience this on an older machine.
Users experience a steep learning curve
Adobe Illustrator is an intuitive software for those familiar with vector-based graphics. However, for others, learning the how-to requires a fair amount of time. As such, these users would encounter a steep learning curve before they can use most of the features offered. Although there are a few video guides and tutorials available for the program, estimates show that a total beginner would need at least 6 months to get familiar with the software.
Costly for business use
While Adobe Illustrator is affordable at $19.99 for personal use, small business owners or teams would find themselves stretched to get the business version at $69.99 per month. Furthermore, the personal version or the individual version can get separated to allow for an à la carte experience. Hence, they can only pay to use a single program, but it isn’t possible for the business version.
Good at vector but bad at raster graphics
Although Adobe Illustrator is good at vector graphics, it fails miserably at using bitmap images with the dot-matrix data structures of pixels. Adobe Illustrator offers little to no support for raster graphics. Yes, the software allows users to vectorize raster images by making use of the toolbox, but the resultant image loses some information during the conversion.
Realistic graphics requires patience
Adobe Illustrator is great at creating abstract images, and vector-based graphics are inventive and fun but falters at creating realistic graphics. It isn’t that the software is incapable of such a task. Rather, one has to input a huge amount of time to get satisfying results. Furthermore, the user must have an eye for detail and be able to recognize out-of-the-place elements.
Very much Photoshop inspired
It is a major drawback that Illustrator looks similar to Photoshop. While the darker interface can accommodate 64-bit work better, the workflow is completely different, confusing users at times. That also means it might have many disadvantages of Photoshop itself.
It is no surprise that Adobe Illustrator is an amazing tool for graphics design. It can generate print and web graphics at hand. Also, the UI is great, and the file sizes are so small that it helps in sharing. The software is mostly for those artists who are already familiar with vector-based graphics and can work around them. Yes, the software also has a fair number of disadvantages. But for those looking for a professional vector graphics generator with ready-to-print images then Adobe Illustrator should be their first choice.