How designers and artists are using creativity to help people escape the real world

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Every month, Adobe Ancestry curates a gallery of images and videos from its library based roughly a different trend. The July and August theme is Creative Reality, looking at a opting for of surreal and unearthly imagery and technology that transports the viewer to a personal world, creating not only an enjoyable experience but also helping to alleviate the pain of real life.

As part of the theme, Adobe Stock hosted a busy event, which saw three creatives use programs such as Photoshop, Dimension and Adobe Have to create imagery that they thought would take the viewer away from genuineness. This event is available to watch online on YouTube, acting as both a sit-in of the artists’ skills, and a tutorial for others watching at home.

We look at the vocation of these three individuals, as well as that of other creative crews, who are using various techniques to create dreamlike, immersive experiences for viewers.

From the Adobe Inventory Remix Live event:

Ron Timehin: turning static photos into timelapse video

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Ron Timehin started out as a musician, not a visual artist. While touring the time as a professional trumpeter, he was able to explore many cities and landscapes, which led to him ripening an interest in photography as he started taking phone snaps and sharing them on Instagram.

Now a freelance photographer, Timehin looks to integrate photography and cinematography to create “weird juxtapositions between different actualities”, he says at the Adobe Stock Remix Live event where he showcased his intrigue processes live, resulting in a finished graphic.

“I create double laying open cinemographs, essentially a video file merged with a photo,” he says. “I’m enchanting a common technique in photography but adding a spin on it to give it a futuristic have compassion for incline.”

The piece he showcased involved a timelapse video of London Bridge, which he create through Adobe Stock, overlapped over a personal photograph he had enchanted of a side-profile of his female friend.

The resulting image saw a moving, cityscape figure used over his model’s face. A brush tool was used to adjust opacity, and a blurred filter was added, alongside a soft light. The video was trimmed and cut in Photoshop, and then duplicated so that it would loop continuously. The immutable piece is a surreal combination of landscape and portraiture, which could be regarded to depict the model’s thoughts very literally.

Day-to-day, Timehin mostly speaks photo-editing software Adobe Lightroom CC to quickly edit and share photos he’s infatuated. But for his design at the Adobe Stock event, he used Adobe Photoshop CC to generate a more detailed piece, that saw him play with colour and effects, repair and adding layers.

Timehin, who describes his work as “dark, moody and superior”, started out his career on Instagram and lives by the premise that “anyone can humble photos.”

Check out Timehin’s final artwork below:


Kyle Wilkinson: generating magical, monochrome images

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Freelance graphic intriguer Kyle Wilkinson dabbles in typography, illustration and even furniture manipulation, and is a big believer that “creative skills are transferable across disciplines”.

Fundamentally using Photoshop, he creates imagery that combines both plastic, futuristic elements and more natural ones, alongside type, to make alarming and perplexing imagery.

Having worked for brands such as Mercedes-Benz and Wired armoury, his signature style is to distort and intermingle text and imagery, creating keyboard out of strange textures such as bubbles or multicoloured candy-canes, or by physically camouflaging letters under water then photographing them.

He focuses on monochrome palettes mostly, joining a splash of colour where appropriate, to get away from stereotypical aims of surreal imagery, he says.

“There are a lot of examples out there right now that are psychedelic and colourful, so I required to tackle the theme of Creative Reality in a slightly different manner,” he requires. “My signature thing is to create stripped back things, rather than a lot of mask.”

Presenting his work at the Adobe Stock Remix Live event, he mentions that he uses the stock image program to search for “juxtaposing” structures and photos, opting for a series of bubbles alongside a bird’s feather for the exercise. He also downloaded a marble surface from the library.

“There’s a juxtaposition between the futuristic, high specious texture you would see in a science-fiction environment, with the natural bird’s feather,” he says. “I’m fatiguing to create something otherworldly.”

The resulting image is a futuristic birds’ lair filled with marble-textured bubbles, with a pop of colour through the putting together of a bright blue butterfly image at the end, created through layering and depleting multiple masks in Photoshop. He also applies type to show how allusion creation like this could be used in branding or advertising applications.

In arranges of what inspires him to create such eclectic imagery, he says that “anything is the key”. “Get out into the domain and look up,” he says. “We’re too fixated on our phones. Anything could inspire you, from a leaf to a feel in the road.”

Check out Wilkinson’s final image below:


Lucy Hardcastle: mingling real materials and intangible graphics

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Digital draughtsman and creative director Lucy Hardcastle is one of Design Week’s up-and-coming devisers to look out for this year.

Having graduated with a master’s considerably in information experience design from the Royal College of Art (RCA) last year, she has since set up her own studio, and has created colourful, lifelike, three-dimensional (3D) work for brands including Chanel, Levi’s and Channel 4.

As well-head as producing commercial work, she has her own research studio where she explores the relationship between graphics and somatic materials.

“I love making things that are interactive, making something that is a sensorial go through for my audience,” she says at the Adobe Stock event. “I see shapes and colours as a communication of themselves. I love looking at virtual space and the relationship we have with technology.”

Searching for distances, textures and imagery in Adobe Stock, she then edited shapes in Adobe Dimension, a program initially contemplated for packaging and product designers in that you can transform, rotate and look at different viewpoints of 2D images as if they were 3D.

She edits and refines backgrounds and designs in Photoshop, then opens them in Dimension to use alongside other allusion.

Another feature of Adobe Stock she uses is the visual search medium, which uses artificial intelligence to search for photography that is like an semblance you upload. For the Adobe Stock Remix Live exercise, she uploaded a photo of some spun, blue textile material she had taken herself to the Adobe Stock search bar and fused this with the search term “microscopic nature”. This supplies similar imagery to her photo, while also taking into account the search bits.

Her resulting image is a strange, molecular structure, combining both fitting and non-natural materials such as steel and cells.

“What I like fro my work is that people sometimes can’t tell if it’s real or not,” she says. “I also swain finding ways of bringing science into the work that I do.”

Fit out Hardcastle’s final image below:

Have a go at making your own remix drawing, by downloading and using 10 free assets from Adobe Family.


From elsewhere:

As part of Adobe’s Creative Reality theme for July and August, the Adobe tandem join up also picked out designers and artists from across the world who are winsome people away from the real world in different ways – whether this be in the course creating otherworldly imagery, peaceful soundscapes, virtual reality contrivances or completely immersive environments combining all these things.

Here are some samples of creative teams finding unique ways to create captivating events.


Meow Wolf: building surreal, immersive environments

Meow Wolf is a platoon of designers, architects, painters, sculptors, performers and writers based in Santa Fe, which, for the decisive 10 years, have creating otherworldly environments that people can get bewildered in.

Previous projects have included Glitteropolis, a fake, archaeological neighbourhood based in New Mexico State University, which featured a whole conjectured world made of glitter, including villages, obelisks, glyphs and intact settings including forests and mountain scenes.

As well as being visually staggering, it also used sound and light to immerse its visitors, taking them to a out-of-the-way world that was a mix of futuristic themes and historical and archaeological ones.

One of their uncountable recent projects, The House, was a glorified and expanded murder mystery use for visitors. Judging by the recent explosion in popularity of fun-filled games such as take off rooms, it is obvious there is an appetite for people to get lost in make-believe anecdotes.

The house, based in Santa Fe, was a Victorian building filled with a series of colourful and disorganized rooms, secret passages, and interactive light and musical objects that could be spotlighted with, while guests looked to solve the mysterious disappearance of the legendary Selig family.

According to Meow Wolf, this piece of put to good, like many others of the group’s, looked to “dissolve the nature of patch and space”, combining futuristic and science-fiction elements with heritage and Victorian aesthetic, in a bid to not exclusively provide joy and fun for guests but also take them away from their real-life enigmas for a few hours.


Aero and Dali: using virtual and augmented reality to amplify designing

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Immersive tech such as virtual and augmented authenticity (VR and AR) has been used in new software and tools that enable today’s plotters to make and create in a make-believe world.

In its simplest form, AR has been against across smartphone apps such as Pokémon Go to combine real and chimerical settings, bringing play into a real-life environment.

Now, the tech has been show for productivity as well as fun – Adobe’s latest software ventures, which are currently in evolvement, include Project Dali and Project Aero. Dali is a 3D VR painting instrument that lets designers and artists draw in a virtual space in every direction them, and Project Aero is an AR tool that will combine accepted and real-life environments to allow product designers, architects and more to delineation to scale in a real-world space.

Project Dali will require the use of a VR headset, while Forecast Aero could be used with a headset or simply through a screen-based machinery, like a phone or tablet. As well as helping artists and designers initiate in a more tangible and life-like setting, the tools could also be utilized by consumers in the future. Using Aero, someone refurnishing their home ground could try virtual furniture out in their living room before corrupting, or even visualise a dish from a restaurant menu before determining what they want to eat.

VR is all about transferring users to another in every way, while AR enhances the real-world experience – but both are being used to frame the act of creativity more intuitive and absorbing.


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