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The Vector Awakens: Star Wars and Adobe Illustrator

Orlando Arocena is a professional illustrator. You could also call him a professional fan, since many of his images depict pop culture touchstones. He creates them out of love for the subject matter, not in response to a client request.

His most recent batch of fan art is dedicated to the Star Wars film saga, which he’s admired since an early age. “Star Wars gets me because of everything it says — not just the creativity but also the philosophy,” Arocena notes.

Arocena uses Adobe Illustrator CC for his images. The intricate vector work behind his subtle gradients is amazing.


To enjoy many more examples of his Star Wars tribute imagery and learn about his Illustrator techniques, see “The Force Is Strong with Orlando Arocena” in Adobe Create Magazine.

Illustration & Drawing, Member Stories

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  • By Michael W. Perry - 7:47 AM on November 15, 2015  

    “The Force” appeals to some because as a mere force it’s not only impersonal, it’s encompasses both good and evil and thus can be used for both purposes or indeed for no more purpose than to serve the self. That illustrates by the pointless “Force” games in the first Star Wars movie release. The Force is, or at least on the surface appears to be, the perfect Religion of the Self, a tool to serve the self.

    But that has a serious downside. The Force, being both good and evil, doesn’t offer a distinction between the two. Ultimately, the choice comes down to a mere personal preference. Some prefer to be Stormtroopers. Some prefer to fight them. Some prefer a giant, centralized galactic empire. Some prefer independent little planet-states. Mere choices.

    The Force doesn’t care and mere human preferences, one way or the other, can’t provide answers to what the Hitchhiker’s Guide called “the ultimate question about life, the universe and everything.” Perhaps that’s why in the Guide the answer to that question is a meaningless and silly one: “42.”

    In a universe that’s ultimately impersonal, all the answers to ultimate questions must also be impersonal and hence meaningless. I fail to understand why anyone finds such a philosophy appealing. It’s just candy-coated nihilism, defined as “the rejection of all religious and moral principles, often in the belief that life is meaningless.”