by Werner Buitendag

Creativity has always been a passion of mine and it started at a young age. Since I can remember I loved drawing and being creative. I also enjoyed computer games and admired the work and creativity that went into that kind of job. This is my Photoshop story and the journey to becoming a Photographer.

When I was 16 years old I started my first job ever. I never knew that I would end up holding a camera 13 years later and make an impact on the world with my work. My journey started at Kodak where I learned everything from printing, taking photos and even selling products. Manipulating pixels is truly an art form by itself in the digital age. Photoshop officially got released in 1990 in the same year I was born. Since then, this software has become the industry standard not only in raster graphics editing, but

to digital art as a whole; it even went to the point that the software’s name itself has become a generic trademark, leading to its usage as a verb for example “to photoshop an image”. Nowadays I sometimes call it “shop an image” or “Edit an image”.

As time progressed I’ve learned all the photoshop basics before I finished high school and I started out by creating digital backgrounds for desktop computers. My friends were amazed at what I was doing at that time, but to me that was miniature compared to what we can do now and what is still out there to learn. To put it into perspective; when you start out as a newbie or even if you have at least 3 years of experience under your belt you still barely touched on what Photoshop is capable of in the raster graphics world. The possibilities are endless and you should never stop learning!

When Mari and I started dating in high school, I introduced her to Photoshop and the world of editing. After High School we were lucky enough to go study at the same art institute (Open Window) together. When I think back to 2010 I was where I’ve always wanted to be. I was placed in a creative environment where I could follow my dream of becoming a designer. In our first year we had a range of compulsory subjects for example: illustration, communication design, interactive media design and narrative studies. We even had to take 3D animation in our first year. Game design has always been something I thoroughly admired and I have been told by some people that my photoshop style has a cinematic/game aesthetic to it, especially my digital art.

In my final year I dedicated my passion and love for photoshop into an artist book. If I had to choose my favourite artwork from that book it will be the ‘Time traveller’. The original idea was a bit more complexas I worked from inspiration and was challenged with time to complete the overall project. In my opinion, don’t over think any Photoshop project just start somewhere and work your way up and remember that there are multiple ways of doing something in Photoshop. I love what I do for a living, but what makes me feel alive is to create art with my wife, Mari.

From this year forward I wish to mentor others that would like to learn Adobe Photoshop. I’ll be posting videos slowly but surely onto our Youtube channel and I hope to see you there!

“Don’t let “photography forum” talk convince you that there is anything wrong with creating surrealistic images. Photography is art and you can express yourself in whatever composited, blurred, cloned, dodged, burned, and liquified way that you want.” – Jerry Uelsman