If you want to create your toolbox, I have a few recommendations. First, test everything until you find the most compatible combination. You can find a replacement for every advanced feature present in Adobe products.
What can you use for design?
Use Krita, a free, open-source raster graphics editor, to replace Photoshop. It features brushes, drawing assistants, animation tools, and exporting to mainstream video formats. In addition, Krita can save files as. PSD, which is Photoshop’s native format.
Instead of Illustrator, check out Affinity Designer, a vector graphics editor that can handle raster details in images. It has a silky smooth performance and a deep zoom, allowing you to make microscopic changes on an intricate design tapestry.
To replace InDesign, try out VivaDesigner, a design program for professionals. It features automated designs, which take a template and fill it out with spreadsheet data. It has a free version, and a paid one for $89–399, depending on your buying purpose.
If you want to find an alternative to InCopy, use any cloud-based file-sharing system, such as Dropbox or Google Docs.
To replace Substance 3D Collection and Substance 3D Texturing, try Armor Paint. Performance relies heavily on your graphics card. And instead of Adobe XD, get UXPin. Works on Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS. There is a free trial and several pricing tiers, with the most basic, not including some advanced features.
What can you use for photos?
Instead of Lightroom, use IrfanView, a free image organizer and batch editor. It is lightweight and optimized for speed, so it can quickly process hundreds of images. There are plugins to expand the program’s functionality, though the UI feels like it hasn’t been updated in a decade. For Windows only.
What can you use for videos?
If you want something else instead of Premiere Pro, try Magix Vegas Movie Studio, a paid program. However, it can be fiddly and refuse to cooperate with media formats other programs consider the best. In addition, recording in OBS by default produces.MKV files, which this tool won’t acknowledge, forcing you to convert them.
Even though After Effects is popular among professionals, you can try out Blender, a free, open-source program for making models, a video renders, animations, and more. Professionals already brag about using Blender to create CGI and concept art for shows and movies, such as season 8 of The Walking Dead, Jurassic Park: the Fallen Kingdom, and Hardcore Henry.
To replace Audition, get Audacity, another freebie program. It doesn’t come with training wheels but can do everything a fully-fledged audio processing program can. It’s quite popular, so you will find tutorials for all its functions, such as optimizing an audio recording to best fit a YouTube video. Like Audition, it’s meant for audio editing.
Use FilmoraGo, a free mobile app to replace Premiere Rush for quick video editing work. Add text overlays and music, trim the video, and export it to social media. The feature set is basic, but the interface is intuitive.
Instead of Animate, try Toon Boom. It’s quite a bit pricier but has a formidable feature set, including training programs and advisors for businesses and art studios.
Other alternatives for Adobe apps
If you’re wondering if there is something better than Dreamweaver, you can use any online webpage editor, such as WordPress. Websites are a bunch of HTML tags around snippets of content, so you can, in theory, make a website in Notepad or any other text processor.
To replace Adobe Stock, use the free alternatives, such as Pixabay and Unsplash, featuring copyright-free, HD photos that people can use for commercial purposes. They are not that many, but they beat the hassle of buying Adobe Stock credit packs. Attribution is not required but is appreciated.
Two major restrictions are that you can’t sell/claim the photos like yours and can’t compile them into a competitor service. For 3D assets, you may have to trawl obscure places, such as the Unity Asset Store.