It’s no surprise that the most popular photo editing software among photographers is the one almost everyone has heard of – Adobe Lightroom. For most photographers, it offers all the editing features you could ever need, it’s easy to use and can be bought either on its own or part of a creative cloud package.
In a recent survey, Shotkit (opens in new tab) asked 657 photographers about their photo editing software (opens in new tab). 37% of the photographers asked were professionals while 63% were amateurs but regardless, Adobe Lightroom (opens in new tab) was still the most popular software, with an enormous 58% of photographers using it.
Although most people stick with Lightroom because of its easy-to-use advanced features which now include several AI-powered tools, people also love the fact you can quickly open images from Lightroom in Photoshop, users can save their own presets but also because change is scary! The downside to Lightroom is that it’s a subscription-only software, and even though prices start at less than $10/£10 a month, some people don’t want the commitment of paying monthly.
For those photographers who don’t use Lightroom, Adobe Photoshop (opens in new tab) is the next best thing with 24% of the votes. Photoshop is a much more in-depth editing suite than Lightroom and offers almost all the same features and more. While Lightroom is more for processing and organizing images, Photoshop is perfect for really diving in with your creativity as you can manipulate, enhance and change images a lot more. It’s also much easier to use if you want to recolor your background (opens in new tab)create a fantastical storm in a teacup (opens in new tab) or a similarly out-of-this-world image or even just remove a background entirely (opens in new tab).
Leading behind is Luminar with 17%, Phase One’s Capture One (opens in new tab) software is in fourth place with 12% while Adobe appears once at number five with 9.9% opting to use Adobe Camera Raw.
Niche editing software such as Snapseed, DxO PhotoLab (opens in new tab)Google Photos (opens in new tab) and Exposure all appear on the list, but only 1-2% of photographers opt to use them.
Interestingly, if Lightroom was no longer an option, rather than jumping ship to Photoshop, many photographers would opt for Capture One and we can only imagine it’s because of the similar layout and ability to edit batches of images in one go.
Check out these 100 Photoshop editing tips (opens in new tab)or discover the best free Photoshop plugins (opens in new tab) that’ll help streamline your process.