For design, there are multiple tools one can use to create the actual design. After some research, it seems that the two of the most commonly used applications for layouts are two well known Adobe products: Fireworks and Photoshop.
When it comes to these products, you may find a lot of similarities. They are both used for design and editing, both products of Adobe, both highly useful in the web development business. Even though they are generally used for similar purposes, however, they each have their specialties. When you use them and get to know their inner workings, it’s easy to determine which program best fits your needs.
• Both are used for design - It’s true that you can draw a design with either Fireworks or Photoshop. It’s also true, however, that one may be more efficient and easier to use than the other. For basic layouts and design, Fireworks seems to be the application of choice. It is user friendly, effective, and is highly recommended by many designers.
• Both edit proficiently - Again, both of these applications edit and arrange photos and images. If this is your main purpose, to edit or alter images, Photoshop is easily the program of choice. It provides more options and is capable of altering at a smaller pixel ratio.
• Price is not at all the same - This is the most obvious reason that most people choose one over the other. The price of these programs varies quite a bit. Fireworks is generally less expensive, often leading to its purchase over Photoshop.
• Price isn’t everything - Though it is true that Photoshop is more expensive, it is also true that it may just be the perfect program for you. If you deal with a lot of images and pictures, Photoshop is an excellent investment.
Either way, it’s hard to go wrong with either program. Both will assist you in completing your site’s design and layout. Before buying, decide what purpose you need the program to serve. Determining the use of the product will help you make a better decision and a smarter investment.source: Learnwebdevelopment.com. Author Conrad Feagin
Personally based on my experience teaching web design for the past 10 years Photoshop can be used for everything in graphic and web design such as printing, 3D objects and titles, web design, fancy photo effects, cool text effect, digital painting, video, gif animations and Fireworks is used more for web design and layout most of the time and is not used for printing. In each program I will teach you how to use Photoshop and Fireworks from A to Z and you will be the judge at the end... how about that..! =)
Percy Ordonez | Adobe Certified Educator | http://www.adobetec.com | New courseWordpress and Dreamweaver ( register on time for next term... we start again Mid-August )