When Pawel Nolbert started sketching and drawing as a schoolboy in Wieruszow, Poland, his parents encouraged his creative passion by buying him a computer. Although he admits using it for video games at first, a friend soon introduced him to Adobe Photoshop. That was the spark that launched Nolbert toward becoming an internationally recognized designer and art director whose marquee clients include Nike, Sony, and Mercedes-Benz. Recently featured as one of Adobe’s New Creatives, we took the time to learn a bit more about his background and approach to design.
Adobe: What was your introduction to graphic design?
Nolbert: In the beginning, I was really interested in customizing operating systems, creating wallpapers, “skins,” and different looks—like the ways you can customize desktops in Windows. Then, around 2001, a friend showed me Photoshop; I didn’t really know it existed before then. I was playing with other software at the time, but when I saw the possibilities of Photoshop, I quickly forgot about the other software.
I mostly worked on personal, non-commercial projects and artwork. Clients started to approach me after I started publishing my work online on deviantART in 2002. My old artwork is still there, but I publish my new projects on Behance and my own website, Nolbert.com.
Adobe: How did your career evolve from that point?
Nolbert: When I started publishing online, I got small assignments to create stickers, flyers, and so on. It quickly started growing into something bigger. I even began getting offers from agencies, but preferred to stay as a freelancer.
My style has evolved quite significantly, from an illustrative style to a mixed media style. I didn’t want to be limited by doing one strict style or type of work, or confining myself to any technique or medium. I wanted to be quite universal in that regard. So, I quickly expanded from classic illustration to incorporate more digital elements, very often including 3D graphics.
Adobe Photoshop CC is still the main tool I use every day to create. After that, I use Adobe Illustrator CC for simple vector graphics. When I was working on a lot of websites—from about 2005 to 2010—I also used Adobe Flash Professional for animation and even did some of coding, but I’m not doing as much of that anymore.
Adobe: What types of commercial projects are you doing?
Nolbert: From the beginning, most of my work has been with advertising clients, mainly print and outdoor campaigns. Secondarily, I work on online projects. A lot of the campaigns extend to different media, so I have to blend different styles: I may paint some assets by hand and convert them to digital; or I may create 3D graphics or use scans or assets from different media to create the effects I want to achieve. Mostly, the end output comes from Photoshop.
Adobe: How exactly do you use Photoshop CC?
Nolbert: A good example is my self-portrait for Adobe’s I Am the New Creative site. It’s a mixture of photography and digital illustration. I used a photographic portrait and manipulated it to get the right proportions of head and face. Then I photographed my hands. Those were the base assets. From that point, I started to use Photoshop vector tools. I use them to maintain scalability and keep everything in control in terms of distortion.
For some reason, I prefer the simplified vectors in Photoshop to those in Illustrator. It doesn’t matter if I work on a web project or a print illustration; I often use vector tools to create different objects in my artwork. When I draw those vector compositions, I use all the textures to apply to vector elements. Then I add shading and different adjustment layers on top of that to create striking colors and compositions. That’s basically the process that I am using to create all my artwork.
Adobe: Are you using any of the latest features in Photoshop CC?
Nolbert: I purchased Photoshop CC a few months back and one of new features that I really like is the Camera Raw filter that’s built into it. It was actually the feature that convinced me to switch from Adobe Creative Suite 6 to Creative Cloud, besides the cloud, of course, which is very convenient. What I love about Camera Raw is being able to master colors or do a basic retouch on photographs nondestructively.
Photoshop CC has a lot of features, small and big, that are really helpful. For example, the Crop tool now has a check button that lets you delete or keep the crop pixels. It’s important to have a good crop tool that lets you control your composition in simple photography and complex illustrations, and this one is much more convenient than in previous releases.
I love the new brushes; I use brushes a lot to achieve the right shading and the right finish for my compositions. The selection of brushes has been expanded in Photoshop CC and they have some new settings that let you control more of the brush parameters, which is especially versatile when using a graphics tablet.
I’m also really impressed with the optimization of the Liquify filter in Photoshop CC, too. It’s much faster and better. I use it a lot to apply distortions to photography or bitmap illustrations. When I work in a very high resolution, I like to use a huge brush size for the Liquify tool, but in CS5 and CS6 the brush size was limited. In Photoshop CC, the brush size has been increased greatly, and that is better for me when working with high-resolution imagery.
Sometimes I combine the Liquify and Warp tools. I use the Warp tool to do simple distortions, and in Photoshop CC it’s been improved in several ways. It produces smoother results than previous releases and you can now set interpolation algorithms like bicubic or bilinear for the Warp or Transform tools. That’s a really great feature—to control the output of tools in a more efficient way, especially for pixel-perfectionists.
Adobe: How else are you using, or would you like to use, Creative Cloud?
Nolbert: I really like that you can export settings with Creative Cloud applications, especially when you work across different computers. For example, I have a favorite set of brushes in Photoshop and it’s really helpful to be able to export those in a convenient way and use them on another computer.
I would also like to use Adobe Photoshop Lightroom to do more personal photography, like when I travel. I really got into photography through Instagram, mostly as a hobby. I think Lightroom can help me improve my photography by letting me manage and edit photos in the same interface. And I like the nondestructive editing capabilities.
I’ve also always wanted to use Adobe InDesign CC to work more on printed output media. I tried it a few years ago and liked it and now that it’s available in Creative Cloud I want to explore it more. I’m also excited about doing more with Adobe After Effects CC; I worked in After Effects on small projects years ago and I miss using it. Sometimes clients want to create animations, so I would love to explore applying After Effects to my projects on a bigger scale.
In late 2013, Adobe announced its Photoshop Photography Program. Yesterday morning, in San Francisco, at the Forrester Marketing Leadership Forum, the Photoshop Photography Program was awarded a Forrester Groundswell Award in the Business-to-Consumer Social Relationship Marketing category.
In September 2013, Adobe announced its Photoshop Photography Program available to customers who owned Creative Suite 3 or later. The program, created for photographers, combined Photoshop CC, Lightroom 5 and Behance ProSite in a discounted bundle for $9.99 per month. The offer became wildly popular. In November 2013 Adobe opened it up to everyone.
To let people know, we used original creative and a sense of humor on our social channels. The announcement poked fun at the company’s previous restrictions on subscription upgrades and touted that, for the first time, this program was available to EVERYONE. An approachable cast of characters (sasquatch, robots and designers alike) illustrated the low barrier to entry and the cheeky, friendly approach of the social campaign caught the attention of our customers–and the members of the Forrester Research team.
Adobe’s primary business goal was to drive awareness and adoption of the Photoshop Photography Program and to reduce negative sentiment in response to the shift to the Creative Cloud business model. The program performed extremely well, exceeding (more than tenfold) initial social sales goals, engagement rates, positive sentiment, and reach statistics.
Read the details of our Forrester Groundswell Award submission and learn why the strategy and approach of the Photoshop Photography Program social campaign stood out from over 100 applications submitted from around the world.
This is the story of how one bored chick named Charlie learned how to 3D-print his own eggs using the new 3D printing capabilities in Photoshop CC; and how you could win your own exclusive egg (designed and printed by Charlie) by visiting our pop-up studio in East London where we’ll be displaying 25 designer interpretations of the egg alongside live 3D-printing demos.
Charlie and the 3D egg
Charlie, a keen designer, decided to create an egg of his own. Inspired by Behance he used Adobe Creative Cloud (and Photoshop CC) to 3D print his very own eggs. Because something worth doing, is worth doing beautifully.
The 3D printing story
So how did Charlie print his own egg? Well, Adobe Photoshop CC can now be used to create, color and texture 3D models, including those produced in other 3D modeling programs. Photoshop CC has support for beautifying a 3D model and then printing it with amazing results. We’ve removed the complexity of the process; all you need to do is select the desired printer and material, and click print. Download a free trial.
How to get your very own 3D egg
To get your claws on one of Charlie’s exclusive 3D eggs, simply tweet using #CreativityForAll and tell us what creativity means to you. We’ll choose the best comments and send the lucky winners their own 3D printed sandstone eggs!*
25 designers and 25 eggs
Charlie isn’t the only one printing eggs. To showcase the new 3D printing capabilities of Adobe Creative Cloud, we commissioned 25 innovative designers to create their own interpretation of the classic egg. We’re exhibiting these eggs and a whole load more at our pop-up studio:
10:00 am–5:00 pm 11 & 12 April | 11:00am–4:00pm 13 April
Shop 7, The Old Truman Brewery, 91 Brick Lane, London, E1 6QL
Come down and say hello, find out more about Adobe’s latest offerings, see a 3D designer in action, 3D printers producing eggs on demand and, who knows, maybe even Charlie hard at work…
A few of the designs we’ve seen so far (check back for updates as the eggs are printed):
* Terms and conditions
The competition is limited to the UK, Ireland, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Sweden, Norway Finland and Denmark and closes 9:00am GMT on 14.04.14. Prizes limited to one per person. (Details of participation.)
We’re thrilled to announce the availability of Lightroom mobile, an extension of the photography workflow designed specifically for a mobile experience. Beginning today, you can get Lightroom mobile from the iTunes App Store and seamlessly connect your desktop workflow to your tablet (you will need the Lightroom 5.4 update for Mac or Windows).
In Lightroom mobile you can:
• Edit and organize images anywhere, anytime on your iPad*
• Enhance everything from smartphone photos to raw images from DLSRs using powerful and familiar tools
• Automatically sync all mobile edits with Lightroom 5 on your desktop
• Easily share your photos
Lightroom mobile is available to Creative Cloud complete, team, student and teacher members, and to members of the $9.99/month Photoshop Photography Program. If you’re already a Creative Cloud member or Photoshop Photography Program subscriber, Get Started Now. For more details and the FAQ visit the Lightroom Journal blog.
With Lightroom mobile, your photography is going places.
*iPhone version is coming soon.
Since the first functional 3D printers were created 30 years ago they have been used to create car parts, smartphone cases, fashion accessories and even artificial organs. Not only is the technology impressive, so are the printable materials.
In this post I want to focus on 3D printing in the hands of creatives—especially since 3D printing is now possible with Adobe Photoshop CC. I’ve highlighted a couple of areas where artists and designers are doing amazing work in the hopes that it will inspire you to create. And, remember, you don’t need a 3D printer; just create/refine with Photoshop CC and send projects directly to Shapeways.com.)
Technically complex tangles
Josh Harker is considered a pioneer and visionary in 3D printed art and sculpture. He is credited as the first to break the “design & manufacturing possibility threshold” due to the level of detail in his work. Yet 3D printing has come a long way and now you can achieve this same level of detail using something like laser sintering. Don’t have the $250k laser sintering printer? Just send it to an online service like Shapeways.com; they’ll print it and mail it to your house. Or you can view (and purchase) Josh’s work on his website.
“There is no technique that is capable of achieving such a great degree of hyper(sur)realism as 3D-modeling. At the same time, 3D printing is the only technique with which virtual models can be made actually physically touchable,” says artist Eric Van Straaten. Eric creates and prints 3D objects using full-color sandstone. More of Eric’s work.
Do it yourself: 1) Use the 3D app of your choice to create an object. 2) Import it into Photoshop CC. 3) Paint directly on the object. 4) Send to Shapeways.com from Photoshop CC for printing.
Interactive 3D voiceprint
I had the privilege of meeting artist Gilles Azzaro at 3D Printshow in NYC where he revealed an incredibly creative printed sculpture featuring a speech made by Barrack Obama explaining the Next Industrial Revolution, a creative use of multiple technologies, made possible (of course) by 3D printing. See the video of it in action.
There are many fashion designers using 3D printing (see below) but I personally like Sebastian Errazuriz as he uses 3D printing to tell stories of love through memories of previous relationships. The shoes are just fantastic—especially accompanied by his equally enchanting stories.
Johnson Banks created Arkitype, an “alphabet of alphabets.” They developed a typographic 3D print of the alphabet, based on popular typefaces; it’s a must for anyone interested in typography who can handle being envious of this creative and beautiful idea. Check it out.
Functional & personalized items
There is hardly a designer out there who doesn’t have a unique iPhone case or laptop sticker. It’s in our blood to create and customize. This sets up 3D printing for a number of uses, like this iPad stand, or my iPhone case. This is one of the many items, on Shapeways.com, created by designers. Or you can make your own using Photoshop CC like I did.
Below are some additional 3D printed works to inspire you and show the different uses of 3D printing in the hands of creatives. You will see that designers and artists are using 3D printing in fascinating ways. But the question is, in this relatively new field: What will you create?
Modeling and printing 3D objects can seem like daunting tasks but in this new Adobe Learn tutorial, I’ll show you how Photoshop CC simplifies the process. Not only will it get you into the exciting field of 3D design and printing but, best of all, you won’t even need your own 3D printer.
Watch three short videos, practice and print with the sample file included in the tutorial, and you’ll be designing and printing your own 3D objects in no time.
In the first video of the series, you’ll see how easy it is to convert a simple 2D pendant design into a 3D model, then customize the design to change the depth and size of the object for print.
In the second, I’ll walk you through the process of choosing different materials for your object and uploading your model from Photoshop CC to Shapeways.com, for printing; you’ll also learn how Adobe’s partnership with this 3D printing service makes it easy to upload and print 3D models and get lightning-fast delivery of your objects.
Once you’re ready to show off your designs, or get inspiration from other designers, watch the third video to learn how to share your 3D models on Behance or your own website.
Now… Grab the tutorial files and give it a try.
More tutorials from Adobe Learn.
Art directors are becoming animators. Print designers are becoming web designers. Illustrators are also photographers and editors who also shoot film. They are the New Creatives, and we are celebrating their work.
With the Creative Cloud our product teams have removed the barriers to creative expression: Designers can build parallax HTML5 experiences. Illustrators are making EPUBs. Photographers are using their cameras and Adobe technology to become filmmakers. And coders have the tools to make beautiful design.
It’s an amazing and interesting time in our industry; people have the ability to self-express, in any discipline, without boundaries. I Am The New Creative promotes the amazing work our community is producing and marks this moment in time as a movement and a celebration of creativity.
One of the most incredible aspects of this program has been watching creative professionals merge their mediums and their portraits to produce “New Creatives” versions of themselves.
There’s something magical about the compositions. As a designer there’s always a part of me in my work, but to personalize my work in this way, to make my work more representative of me, presents an alternative perspective. All of the artists we’re working with are enjoying this experience and are appreciative of our desire to promote their amazing creative output.
Our new site highlights the New Creatives, their disciplines, their work, and their stories.
Visitors to the site can join us and become New Creatives (submissions are made through Behance and curated by our team); we’ll be choosing a number of artists and celebrating them and their work throughout our social properties and on Adobe.com during the coming year.
Be sure to check out the work of the New Creatives, get inspired, and join us.
Finger drawing is fast, but when artists want precision, they reach for pressure-sensitive styluses. It’s why the Adobe Ideas team was so excited to announce Pogo Connect Bluetooth Pen support back in July. And it’s why today we’re thrilled to announce support for the new Wacom Intuos Creative Stylus.
Now, when drawing in Adobe Ideas, there are two great stylus options.
This recently-introduced pressure-sensitive stylus for iPad provides 2,048 levels of pressure and palm rejection and works with the iPad 3, iPad 4 and iPad mini. The Intuos is $99.95, and is available for pre-order on the Wacom site.
Remember: Adobe Ideas is still the only vector drawing application with Illustrator compatibility. Couple it with a Creative Cloud membership to sync Ideas artwork to the Cloud and open and refine it in Illustrator CC.
Update Adobe Ideas today in the iTunes App Store (while you’re there, take a minute to review it). Don’t have it yet? What are you waiting for? It’s free!
Just over two weeks ago the Kuler team launched a new beta version of kuler.adobe.com with the top three user-requested features. That wasn’t enough for them so, since then, they’ve added two more:
Rearrange Colors in a Theme
- Easily reorder colors in a theme by dragging color chips to the desired slot.
- Change color values with sliders that show the associated values of each color in a theme. Previously one slider controlled the brightness level of each color; now four sliders for each color take the guesswork out of changes… entire themes can be altered by moving sliders to any point along the color spectrum.
To start using the latest beta features go to https://kuler.adobe.com/features/enable/newFeatures.
See the Changes We Made Last Time
To see the changes we made for the July 22 beta release read “Adobe Kuler Is Kooler: A Beta Release.”
Once you’ve spent some time with the beta, let us know what you think: http://forums.adobe.com/community/kuler_forums.
At this year’s Adobe MAX conference, Academy award-winning Visual Effects Supervisor Rob Legato excited the audience by sharing a glimpse behind the scenes of work he’s done on major blockbuster films such as Apollo 13, Titanic, Aviator and Hugo. He reveals his secrets behind visual effects, his inspirations, and creative process.
Known for creating visual effects so good the audience doesn’t realize that they are effects, Legato aims to transport the movie-goer into another time and place. His ideation process is surprisingly simple, as he looks to the past for inspiration. His talent, coupled with the use of creative tools for video professionals from Adobe, help Legato execute beautiful and memorable scenes in modern-day film.
For more, you can view his entire talk on Adobe TV or below:
We’ll be focusing on all-things video production for the remainder of this week. Be sure to check us out on Facebook and Twitter for more inspirational stories, creative work and product news and tutorials.