If this keeps up, none of my hats are gonna fit anymore
My main preference is Xara LX (I use it to produce 98% of my work) Although, I am trying to get the feel for InkScape, and I also use Gimp as well as ShowPhoto (for it's filters, for blurring) I often get teased by fellow CG artists / designers for not using InkScape enough
When more of my other work shows up, I often scan in handwork, and will use a software called Pixia, and then run it all through Xara to add some effects, etc.
Anyone can get really nice 3D effects by using Xara to "slice" a single item from a pic, then bring the entire pic back (after blurring it with ShowPhoto), then simply place your single "clear/clean" item ontop of that blurred background and... VIOLA!!!
Adding a slight shading adds to the effect dramatically in alot of cases