Okay, total newbie, here - put on your "patience" fez, toque, or beanie!
I'm a bit overwhelmed by the website - I keep getting bounced around from one product to another, then to a product collection, and then to online cloud options, etc. I miss the good ol' days when I could go buy and install software from a CD.
I currently own no Adobe products, so I'm looking for the right "starter pack." I want to do some photography work (a new hobby), which I define as improving the photos I take as well as playing around with them in an artistic way. I like doing stuff like turning photos into ink drawings, or moving objects into (and taking them out of) photos.
My guess is somehow I need to buy a "basic" Adobe Photoshop, although I'm honestly having a hard time figuring out how to find that - seems like they want us ot basically "rent" the program on a month-to-month basis. Am I missing something, here?
I am unsure if I need Lightroom, but am happy to get it if it makes things easier or opens up more fun options for me (not worried about the cost of these things, BTW.)
What I am trying to avoid is buying something I do not need, or purchasing it in a way that won't work for me in the long run (i.e., is Creative Cloud the way to go?).
Oh, and I'm an educator, and I'm aware of the pricing options on that side of the house.
The current method of getting Photoshop is on a monthly payment scheme through the Creative Cloud (as I think you have worked out).
Most of what you describe wanting to do can be done in Photoshop Elements (which you can buy outright rather than renting it).
I would suggest trying the trial version of Elements before jumping in.
BTW I resisted the move to Creative Cloud for a while - not wanting to "rent" the software. I finally jumped onboard when Adobe had a special offer ($9.99 pm for Photoshop and Lightroom). I took the attitude that I could rent the software for a long time before paying more than the standalone price for Photoshop.
My understanding is that you can buy a licence for CS6 at the moment, but don't expect upgrades.
You can get the trial for Elements here.
Thanks for taking the time, John. Very helpful!