Software Review

Adobe Creative Cloud 2022 Review

Adobe’s Creative Cloud is a collection of 20+ desktop and mobile apps and services for photography, design, video, web, UX and more. Explore your creativity with software like Photoshop, InDesign and Illustrator. Voted #1 in graphic design software.


  • Industry-standard and highly recommended by creative experts.
  • Complete package with more than 20+ creative apps.
  • Free trial available. No credit card needed.


  • Only available for a monthly or annual subscription.
  • Less suitable for beginner or amateur use due to the relatively high cost.

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More About Adobe Creative Cloud

Adobe Creative Cloud Reviews

Find out what each expert had to say about Adobe Creative Cloud.

Ray Allen

Assistant Manager of Motion Graphics - Shop LC

✓ Adobe Photoshop
After over 10 years of personal and professional use, Adobe Photoshop continues to be my preferred photo editing and graphics software. I’ve used Photoshop for traditional photographic touch ups and editing as well as for more graphic and editorial projects. The tools and features continue to evolve with more specific nuanced editing options becoming available every year. It’s amazing to see how much the digital creative industry has evolved in the 21st century, and Photoshop continues to be the standard bearer.

Orlando Delbert

Art Director - OTK Media Group, Inc.

✓ Adobe Creative Cloud
The graphic design software I would recommend others to use would be largely based on the type of design he or she intends to focus on mainly. I myself have been using mostly various Adobe products from the Creative Suite, (as well as some high-end proprietary hardware-based systems), for many years.

The mainstay for many graphic designers is Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator. Photoshop is considered by many to be the best imaging and graphic design application, for it’s versatility, ease of compositing layers, creating masks, editing of photographs, and for creating design pieces that can be introduced into video and visual effects projects. Photoshop is exceptional for combining text elements with photography, as well as to create your own elements, with tools that allow you to create shadows and highlights to create a sense of depth and realism in your artwork.

And if you plan on doing a lot of work with logo creation and typography, Illustrator offers some of the same features as Photoshop, while working in a resolution independent, vector-based graphics environment. What that means is, unlike Photoshop which is raster-based, (based on colorized pixels), Illustrator uses mathematical formulas and coordinates to create many types of graphics, not bound to resolutions of the print or film resolution worlds. Illustrator is largely used for web design, product packaging, and large-format designing needs, such as banners and billboards because of its resolution independent nature.

My design background is largely in motion graphic design and special digital visual effects for television and film. I’ve been using Adobe After Effects since their initial beta release decades ago. After Effects is exceptional in the creation and combining of individual design and video assets and to animate them in a 3-dimentional space, in an affordable software package. While the elements themselves are 2-dimentional, the end user has the ability to change the look and location of each individual element over time.

Joshua Galinato

Graphic Designer - Galiway

As a photographer & graphic designer I have been using the Adobe Suite for over 10 years now. When it comes to editing photos it’s really down to the two main photo editing software:

✓ Adobe Lightroom
Great for organising albums and grading photos.

✓ Adobe Photoshop
Great for manipulating photos even further.

Having said that, this year I wanted to try my hands on open source software. The equivalent would be:

✓ Darktable
Lightroom equivalent.

Photoshop equivalent.

Although the free alternatives are similar, I can’t deny that the Adobe products are far better and more intuitive to use.

If I was an amateur with a small budget, GIMP & Darktable would do just fine. If I’m in a professional environment, I would need to use Photoshop & Lightroom.

Roxanne Brown

Creative Art Director - PageSparx

✓ Adobe Creative Cloud
For a solution that covers most broad-based graphic design needs, most industry professionals including us, would recommend Adobe’s offerings. Adobe has become the standardized format for the industry, pushing giants like QuarkXpress and others to the wayside. Unfortunately, like many companies, Adobe has moved to a SaaS (Software As A Service) model that a lot of graphic artists/designers grumble about. Gone are the days where you can just buy software in a box and update when you wanted or needed to. With the new model (which isn’t exactly new because they rolled out the Creative Suite SaaS model back in 2012), you’re forced to pay a monthly fee for a subscription to their family of applications.

There are plenty of good alternatives to Adobe products, but they’re not conveniently all under one roof – or company. If you don’t mind using apps from various companies, there are even quite a few free options out there. These programs may be compatible and open certain files but may cause problems when you want to save to a specific proprietary file format.

William Angelos

Owner - The Expat

✓ Adobe Photoshop
I think that if we’re talking about the best everyone is going to think about Adobe Photoshop. It has all the features and can do just about anything anyone might need to do. It is however super expensive, and for most people it is complete overkill.

✓ Affinity Photo
Most people will just never need to do all that this program can do. For those people there is Affinity Photo by Serif. Rather than charge a monthly fee they just charge a 1 time price of $50. Adobe Photoshop is something you rent at $10 a month. Affinity Photo does +90% of what Photoshop does. So when cost and actual use is considered for me Affinity Photo is my choice for best photo editing tool.

Brian Gargone

Founding Co-Owner - Squeeze Marketing

✓ Adobe Creative Cloud
At Squeeze Marketing, all of our designers use the Adobe Suite. It is the software we are all most familiar with and it gives us greater design opportunities. We use Illustrator for hand-drawn designs, whereas we use Photoshop or InDesign for laying out projects. Additionally, we most recently started using XD to wireframe our websites to show clients their navigation before taking it into development.

Sieglinde Van Damme

Interdisciplinary Artist - studiosieg

✓ Adobe Lightroom
Adobe Lightroom is my favorite software for two reasons:

1. The easy-to-use, visual slider system takes your photograph from good to great in just a few quick steps. Then simply copy your adjustments and apply to the other photographs in the same series with just one click (minor additional tweaks may still be needed).

2. Feel the need to experiment? Simply create virtual copies in Lightroom to play with, and never lose the original nor fill a folder with way too many saved alternatives. Use the star rating to keep the side-by-side good experiments apart from the ones that need more creative thought. Export the successful ones only as the finished work.

Jaclyn Hoffman

Project Manager - Falcon Marketing

✓ Adobe Creative Suite
As a designer, my preferred software is the most current Adobe Creative Suite (2020).

Between Illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign, each of these softwares serves a different yet essential purpose for graphic designers.

For example, Illustrator, which is a vector-based software, is an amazing tool for creating design elements such as logos and drawings.

InDesign is the best layout software. If I am building a page for both print and digital media that is composed of text and images, I will always turn to InDesign.

Photoshop is probably the most commonly known Adobe design tool, as it is extremely diverse, and has so many helpful features.

Aside from the obvious photo editing capabilities, at Falcon Marketing we use Photoshop for designing full websites. Each page of the site is mocked up in Photoshop, and then the Photoshop files are used to develop the code to build pixel perfect websites.

Kristin McCrossin

Creative Director - Boomtown Internet Group

✓ Adobe Creative Cloud
For true graphic designers, the Adobe suite can do everything. The Adobe tools are intuitive (Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, etc) once you know the basics of how to use them. They can do anything you want – from editing images to creating a logo from scratch.

Nicholas Allen

Founder / Designer / Developer - Sublime Dzine

✓ Adobe Suite
For graphic design, no one beats out Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop. They’ve been doing graphic design since the beginning. That said, both are pretty hefty pieces of software with steep learning curves and can be rather expensive. Adobe’s creative suite is a great option for getting the best and keeping it cheap.

✓ Canva
As a professional, I find myself also using Canva pretty consistently as well. Their tool is fast and browser-based with a nice mobile app too. I use them for most of my social media and website graphics that aren’t fully custom or when I’m short on time. Canva is also great when you need to create a large number of graphics in a single sitting. I’ll make a month’s worth of graphics for a client’s social media calendar in about an hour for instance. Oh, let’s not forget the library of stock images from Canva with image templates and the ability to post directly to your social media.

Adobe Creative Cloud FAQ

What is Adobe Creative Cloud?

Adobe’s Creative Cloud is a collection of 20+ desktop and mobile apps and services for photography, design, video, web, UX and more.

Is Adobe Creative Cloud any good?

We asked 53 creative experts on most have recommended to use Adobe Creative Cloud. It’s by far the most popular solution for graphic designers.

Is Creative Cloud free to use?

Adobe Creative Cloud doesn’t have a free plan. You can either sign up for a monthly or an annual plan.

What’s included in Creative Cloud?

Adobe Creative Cloud includes 20+ apps like Photoshop, InDesign and Premiere Rush. You only get access to Adobe Fonts, Adobe Portfolio, Creative Cloud Libraries and cloud storage space.