Am I correct to say that the only way to get any new Adobe graphics software products is to purchase the "CLOUD" versions - paying monthly?
You are correct as far as "CURRENT" version is concerned. There are some stores still selling Photoshop CS6 that is perpetual and you only pay once and use it forever.
The other alternative is to buy Photoshop Elements 14 and that too is perpetual - i.e. pay once and continue using it until you get fed up of it.
Hope this helps.
What are you looking to do exactly?
Is this for professional or hobby stuff?
Print, vector graphics, web graphics, photo editing?
When I first started out, Paint Shop Pro was free. I used it for editing raster / bitmap images.
It's decent software for the price but I still prefer Photoshop.
Photoshop Elements is another low cost alternative for consumers who don't need all the fancy bells & whistles in Photoshop Extended.
PS Elements 14 -- USD $100.
Adobe Lightroom 6 is still sold by Adobe on a perpetual License base (Current version is 6.6). Other software needs to be acquired on a pay/month basis.
In the consumer product range, you find Premiere and Photoshop Elements still on a perpetual license if my information are correct.
And there are commercial products out, like Corel Draw.
I worked with Corel Draw years ago and dropped it in favour of the Adobe products, because the professional prepress world works with Adobe products. Exchange is more reliable.