Usually, I am a relatively quick adopter of new design tools and techniques but this was not the case with Sketch; I loved Photoshop as a design tool and I couldn’t see myself using anything else. Looking back, hindsight being 20/20, that was a silly attitude to have. No matter how proficient a user of Photoshop I was, I didn’t know the impact moving to Sketch would have on my workflow. And boy, did it make an impact… for the better.
Since moving to Sketch, I only ever used Photoshop for editing images… the sole reason for it’s initial creation. Yes, it has certainly evolved over the years and we have been able to make the most skeuomorphic wonderful designs or beautiful modern interfaces in it, but at the end of the day it is still software to edit photos. Sketch on the other hand is most certainly design software.
I’m actually glad that I first learnt to design websites in Photoshop, I feel it made my workflow more disciplined; every layer being correctly named, grouped and colour coordinated. That said I did find myself thinking that some aspects of creating a design in Photoshop felt like an unnecessarily long process.
I saw many designers on Twitter make the move to Sketch and say plenty of good things about it, as well as a couple of minor bugs and annoyances in the earlier versions. So I finally made the switch around three months ago and, to be honest, I was shocked how great it is. Sketch’s user-interface is beautifully simple, I will never forget how overwhelmed I felt the first time I re-opened Photoshop after this switch. In comparison, Sketch has every tool you need within hands reach with new options becoming available as you select a tool.
Exporting assets or slicing up designs was never something I looked forward to in Photoshop as it was time consuming and quite a heavy handed process. The export options in Sketch are super speedy, being able to make multiple sized asset exports within a couple of clicks alone has sped up my workflow immensely when preparing a design for development.
Overall if you are thinking of trying Sketch, I highly recommend it. It’s one off price of $99 makes it affordable and if you have a Treehouse account you can get a large discount off that.
You can find out more about Sketch here.