Choosing Fonts for a Business Site and Marketing

The fonts that users create for their business must fit into a number of categories that they use to create or choose the proper fonts. Consider each of these steps before you choose a font for the business. It is far simpler for someone to make their business approachable and popular. They must choose readable text that people will scan or skim easily when reading when they have released it. They have no chance of attracting customers when they cannot read what they have written, and they must test these fonts with people who have not read their texts before. They will let you know if the text is easy to read, and the business must test text with or without serifs.

Use the Typeface in Pairs

Business, Fonts can work well togetherThere are many typefaces that work well together because the business wants the title to look different from the rest of the article. They will feel much better about the article and content they have created when they have built pairs of typefaces that work together. They must choose from the 12 or 14 point font, and they will find that they have a choice between the smaller and the larger text for their site or marketing. Larger text may be easier to read, but it may not look right for them. Choose the smaller text that is used for a number of books and novels, and they will allow their customers to read something that feels familiar to them.

Set Up the Hierarchy of Texts

There are many things companies must consider when building content, and they must ensure that they have chosen large text for the title, standard text for the article, and smaller text for the fine print at the bottom. There are several different ways to build their hierarchy, and they will notice that the articles they have built must keep a consistent hierarchy. The spaces between the text will lead them to the next set of text, and they must choose spaces that allow them to read easily. There are many people who prefer to leave their text close together because it helps them read everything quickly. You may leave space between the paragraphs to help with scanning, and you will not cram the text into a space that makes them hard to read. Cramming text will make it hard to read and design.

Tracking the spaces between the text is quite important, and businesses will find that there are a number of things that will help their readers understand what they have written. The space between the letters may be quite closed if they are attempting to fit everything into a smaller space, or they may spread the letters out when they want to cover a larger area. Every step they take to create better typeface will ensure that they have created items that are much easier to read. Someone who attempting to build easier marketing and websites that people will read when they visit the company to shop or learn.

Designing a Beautiful Blog Layout with Photoshop

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The blog layout users create for their site will look perfect only after they have taken the time to use Photo Shop to build the pages. This is a look at how you will grow a blog that has been designed with Photoshop. They will start with a layout box that they must build from scratch. They are creating each part of the page when they work in Photoshop, and it will help you create something that other people will want to look at. The header must be laid out using the measurements that are provided by Photoshop. You must choose the size and resolution that you believe will fit your blog, and you will find that adjusting it to meet the pictures in the background or the text will make it more fun to use. Users must go into the new guide for their image size, and they will adjust each layer individually using the Gaussian blur which is much stronger than a standard blur so they mix colors well.

Use the Content Space

The content space users create will be adjusted using the rectangle tool. The horizontals type tool is used to type the text, and the same will be true in the header. Users may find that the content space they have built is a bit narrower or wider than the header using their line tool, and they must resize this space to ensure that it matches the design you have placed overhead. Someone who is using Photoshop for formatting will have many opportunities to weigh the header against the content area. They may drop text in this area to see how it looks, and they will have a visual representation of the final product. Sharing buttons must be created in a size that makes them easy to find. They will notice that the standard sharing buttons are too small, and their readers will miss them. They must size and scale the sharing buttons to match the header, and they will be scaled down quite a lot as a result. Choose a picture that matches the service you are sharing to, and ensure that they are recognizable.

The Footer

The footer is just like the header, but it may contain any closing information that you wish to give. Users may place their contact information in this window, and they may include the copyright for the page in the horizontal type editor. Ensure that you have chosen wisely, and users will have a full-page format that may be dropped onto any blog. Photoshop allows users to create a blog format that may have colors altered with the layering tool, text blurred with Gaussian blur, fonts changed and margins corrected. Each step they take builds a unique format for their blog that was not created to match all the other blogs in the world. This blog layout is truly special.

The Lenovo Yoga Book

When it comes to the computer market, things have gotten extremely competitive. Ever since the release of iPads and other mobile tablets that allow users to hold a mobile computer in the palm of their hands, the market for actual computers has become increasingly narrow. This has pushed the makers of laptops to become very creative and continuously push the envelope in terms of how they see and create their products. One laptop computer that is being recognized for its innovative design is the Lenovo Yoga Book. Lenovo is touting the computer as a mobile productivity device. They brag that the Yoga Book is a versatile 2-in1 device that is unlike anything that customers have ever seen before.

The Surprising Design

One of the biggest things garnering praise for the Lenovo Yoga Book is its sleek and stunning design. It features a clamshell exterior made of aluminum and magnesium. It is ten inches long and symmetrical in shape. The hinge has also been expertly weighted to ensure that it is neither too loose nor too stiff. It has also been kept to a low weight to provide a more comfortable and luxurious experience for users. Pictures of the device simply do not properly convey the sleek and sexy quality of the sturdy and lightweight device. It was designed to look and feel like a tablet, but provide the productivity level of a full laptop computer.

The Cost and Components

Of course it is fairly easy to come up with a design that is appealing to customers, but if the device is not effective it is basically a moot point. That is why it was important to Lenovo that this device be able to pack just as much bark as it does bite. According to their website, the Yoga Book comes equipped with an Intel Atom x5 CPU with 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of expandable storage. The cost will ultimately come down to two different components; the amount of storage that you want and the type of operating system that you prefer. Both the Windows 10 and Android operating systems are being offered for the device. If you choose to go with Android, you will be able to pick up the device for a starting price of just $499. However, if you decide to go with Windows, you will need to fork up an extra fifty bucks making your starting price $549 before tax.

What People Are Saying About the Yoga Book?

Just like with the launch of any new device, there are people that will have mixed opinions and reviews about its design and performance. The Yoga book is no exception, but for the most part the reviews have been positive and the device is being well-received. Here is what one user said about the device in terms of both its design and performance capabilities: “On the outside the Yoga Book looks stunning. The aluminum-magnesium alloy used to make the chassis looks great and feels solid enough to survive the average wear and tear expected of a tablet/laptop. The modest 690 g weight and thin 9.6 mm (closed) thickness also make it feel suitably travel friendly. I’m a little less convinced about the Yoga Book’s internals. The device runs using an old school Intel Atom 64-bit CPU and features a modest 4 GB of RAM. If the CPU plays nice with Google’s software, which Atom chips don’t always, the specs should be ok for Android. But I wouldn’t want to run Windows 10 on these specs.”

Ultimately, it will always come down to personal preferences with things like computers or tablets. It also depends on what you will be using the device for. Each one has its own strengths and weaknesses. It is usually a good idea to go into a store and play around with a variety of different devices to see which one is best suited for you and your needs before making a big purchase.

In Detail: New Content-Aware Crop Tool in Photoshop CC

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With the launch of the new Photoshop CC came many new and exciting features and enhancements. One of the most talked about is the new content-aware crop tool. This tool is super exciting because is so intuitive that it can actually help to add additional space in the cropping of photos by expanding the boundaries of an image with matching detail.

What will it do?

This is a tool that can be very useful if you are attempting to crop an image after you have already straightened it, or if you need to add more space on the sides, above, or mellow to create a better layout. It will also allow you to be able to move the horizon be expanding the ground or even adding more sky. You will also be able to fill in any of the corners when rotating the image so that you do not have to sacrifice any valuable pixels.

How do you use Content-Aware Crop?

Of course, the very first thing that you will have to do to be able to use any of these features will be to go and download and then install the update to your previous version of Photoshop. It is always recommended that you also restart your computer before you begin if the software doesn’t already prompt you to at the conclusion of the installation. The update is available on either app store or on the Adobe website.

As previously stated, this feature will allow you to do a few different things to your images; so let’s break it down a bit further. First, we will look at what to do if you need to use the feature to rotate your image and make it perfectly straight. Begin by clicking on the crop tool and make sure that you have the “content Aware” option checked on the toolbar at the top. Then click on your picture to activate the Crop Shield. Drag your cursor to the outside edge of the picture and be sure that a curved double arrow appears. That is the cursor used for rotations. Once you see that appear, click and drag that cursor to rotate your picture to its desired angle and hit enter. The tool will now rotate your image and actually fill in the corners with the information that it has taken from the other portions of the image.

That is pretty impressive, huh?

Now let’s take a look at how the tool can be used to extend your images further. Again, clicking the “Content-Aware” checkbox on the toolbar at the top of the screen will be key. Begin this process my selecting your image to activate the crop shield, as you did in the cropping process. Next, move the cursor to one of the sides of the picture so that you are able to see the double arrow. Now you can click and drag the mouse to outwardly in the direction that you want to extend the canvas. Keep in mind that the tool will work best for simple images like a beach scene.

Adobe’s ‘Collabograms’ Campaign

In the art and design world, there is nothing that is more dangerous than to constantly play it safe. The best art and most notable designs come from those that are willing to think outside the box and push the envelope. Often times, some of the best pieces come out of artistic duos or collaborations. Adobe has decided to help push artists in a new way by challenging them to come together in order to create something that they may never have been able to do on their own and share it with the world through social media.

According to a recent article published by Adweek, there has been an exciting, and unexpected new collaboration in the art world as a result of Adobe’s campaign. Tattoo artist Robert Klem, and gold leaf artist Ken Davis have decided to team up in the name of creative collaboration, inspired by the challenge from Adobe being called “Collabograms”. The challenging campaign intended to help promote their products on social platforms has brought the unlikely duo together in the hopes of “creating something awesome together”.

What Does Adobe Say About the Challenge?

“This series is about Photoshop supporting creativity and highlighting the incredible results that can come from unexpected pairings and collaboration,” Lex van den Berghe, principal product manager of digital imaging at Adobe, tells Adweek. “The audience is what we like to call the New Creatives – artists who don’t limit themselves to one medium, but pull from multiple influences and materials to express themselves.”

The Work Speaks for Itself

The dynamic duo has certainly arisen to the challenge by designing and crafting an unusual and spectacular tribute to rock artist Lemmy. Their work presents a stunning image of the rock god rendered in stained glass, as you might see done with a saint. Additionally, there are LED lights, votive candles, and song references. The result is not just beautiful and unique, but it is special because it is something that probably never would have come together without the launch of this campaign by Adobe. Although the duo themselves are rather strange, given the nature of their respective works, the result of their collaboration is not due to that fact that they managed to mesh and work so well together.

The Reason for the Campaign

Creators from Adobe say that the campaign was meant to inspire artists to work together in a new and fresh way, but also to help enhance their company’s spotlight on social media; particularly on Instagram. The intention is for the artists to create longer visual story-like platforms where artists can expand upon one another’s creations while also absorbing the enhanced benefits of the products. They believe that these “Collabograms” will hold strong value and presence on social media and also be very “shareable” to help further increase the exposure and ultimately increase sales both inside and out of the artist community.

New and Innovative Photoshop Blending Modes

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Yet again Adobe has released a new and exciting feature to its Photoshop software that comes with more than just a few questions. Blend modes are one of the many features that has brought out a plethora of user questions. Here I will break them down into more basic terms so that you will be able to better understand them and implement them into your work.

How do blend modes work?

Before you can really understand what to do with blend modes it is a good idea to get a better grasp on how they actually work. By using the Opacity slider located in the Layers Panel, you will be able to blend the active layer and any layers that are below it by making the active layer more or less translucent, which will allow the other layers to become more or less dominant. Each version of the software will carry different blend modes. For example, Photoshop CS5 has 27 different mathematical calculations that translate into different blend modes. You can alter your blend modes through the use of a variety of different mathematical equations involving addition, subtraction, division, and multiplication.

Shortcuts

In order to make the process of using the blend modes faster and easier to use, Adobe has implemented keyboard shortcuts. In order to be able to use them you will need to make sure that your current tool is something other than any of the tools that are located in the painting and editing section of the Tools Panel where you see the Stamp, Eraser, Brush Tool, etc. This is due to the fact that these tools actually have their own set of settings and if you have them selected their settings will end up taking precedence over those of the blend mode. Therefore, you will want to make sure that you are paying close attention to what you are doing each step of the way. Some of the keyboard shortcuts will allow you to do things like navigate, change the standard opacity and fill opacity settings or scroll through different layers.

Understanding the Blend Mode Math

As previously mentioned, there are 27 different blend modes and in order to be able to fully understand them you need to understand how the math works in Photoshop. Since the blend modes affect the darkness and brightness levels and the values of luminescence is based on a scale of 0 to 255, you might assume that the math that is performed by Photoshop is based on those values. Instead, Photoshop has standardized the values prior to the application of the math. Those values are placed on a scale from zero to one as follows: white (1), Gray (0.5), and Black (0). All of the formulas and math are then based on those numbers which means that the resulting values are not necessarily what you might expect.

If you would like to see a set of examples to further your understanding of how the mathematics works, you can visit photoblogstop. There are excellent examples and illustrations that further break down how each formula will work for all of the blend modes.

Breaking Down the Individual Blend Modes

Again there are a lot of different blend modes and it is wise to make sure that you have an understanding of how each one works. For example, the normal mode does not have any math applied at all. The Dissolve mode functions on partially transparent and fully transparent pixels and treats transparency as a pattern of pixels then applies the diffusion dither pattern. If you would like to see a more complete list of all of the different blend modes, you can visit the link above. There is a very useful chart with the complete breakdown and description. It may be a good idea to print that chart out for the purpose of studying or to keep at your desk as a quick reference until you have been able to fully understand and memorize them all. It is a lot of content so do not feel discouraged if it takes a while to feel like you have a full grasp on all of it. The more you work with each of the 27 blend modes, the more comfortable you will feel with them.

25 years of Photoshop – Part of History

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It would be easy to argue that Adobe’s Photoshop has been the most influential design software of our generation. For more than 25 years, Photoshop has been the right hand to illustrators and graphic designers. It is one of the most powerful pieces of software on the market today. However, Photoshop did not start out as the sophisticated creation and illustration software that it is today. In fact, it has come a very long way over its lifespan. In celebration of the anniversary of the magnificent software, let’s take a look at just how much Photoshop has evolved since its creation more than 25 years ago.

The Birth of Photoshop

It all began back in 1987 when brothers Tom and John Knoll were doing some work on their father’s Apple II Plus computer. Thomas, a photography enthusiast like his father, decided that he wanted to do some alterations to a photograph image. He ended up writing a subroutine for the computer which enabled him to be able to translate the monochromatic images through a grayscale. Of course it was a very primitive version of the software, but the Knoll brothers continued to tweak and work on the program and found that they were able to create several different processes that allowed them to be able to perform different alterations on their images. Just like that, Photoshop was born.

At the time, John was already working on the development of special effects for George Lucas’ Industrial Light and Magic. He was the one that recognized the true potential in his brothers programing to turn the applications into a revolutionary image editing software program. Although, it is highly unlikely that either one of them really had any idea just how successful the program would be or how much of an impact it would have. The two teamed up combining vision and expertise and finally in 1988 released the first version of the software which they named Image Pro.

Stepping Stones

Once the program was out on the market, the Knoll brothers recognized the potential for growth if they were to partner up with other companies to launch additional software and expand awareness of their product. Their First partnership was with Barneyscan, a manufacturer of scanners that first purchased Image Pro to ship out with 200 of their scanners. Under that partnership the software was actually named Barneyscan XP. Due to the success of the initial partnership with Barneyscan, the Knoll brothers thought it would be easy to obtain additional partnerships to further launch their program. They were wrong.

It took them months of bids and proposals to a variety of different companies, where they saw rejection after rejection, before they finally pitched their product tot Adobe for partnership. Finally, they were able to win over the affections of the Adobe executives and convince them to rerelease the Image Pro software under the Adobe brand name. Finally in 1990, Adobe released the very first version of Photoshop known as Photoshop 1.0.

Changing Landscapes

The initial launch of the first version of Photoshop was met with tremendous success. It was the first time the software or any of its kind was released for sale to the general public as a standalone software program rather than being bundled together with the Barneyscan scanners. Due to the success, Adobe decided to proceed with further development and expansion of the original software. The following year in 1991, Adobe released Photoshop 2.0 with a plethora of new features to excite users. As the years went on, the brothers alongside with the engineers at Adobe continued to grow and develop the software, constantly adding new features. They saw some bugs and kinks along the way in the early 90’s due to problems with the amount of RAM needed and the transition from being offered exclusively for MAC computers to Windows computers, but their commitment to the products success showed in the software. By the end of the century, Photoshop had become an institution of all its own among the digital design and illustration industry. It was a staple for professional artists of both small and huge proportions and it was changing the shape of the way imaging was created altogether.

Fast forward to today and Adobe Photoshop has become one of the most powerful and instrumental software programs on the market. It boasts a number of features that the Knoll brothers probably never could have imagined when they began working on Image Pro back in the 80’s. It is constantly changing at a rate of never before, which despite causing some frustration among users, allows artists and illustrators to further develop their work in new and exciting directions that were never before possible. The software has become so complex that most people will need to take classes to be able to get started with the program and its many layers. However, it is an absolute must for any modern designer. Just as it has been exciting to watch Photoshop come to life and develop over the last quarter century, it will be even more exciting to see what the developers have in store for the future of the program in the years to come.

Creating Fonts, also with Photoshop?

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Over the recent years there has been a growing interest in typography and the development of new fonts among artists and crafters. Luckily, this interest was recognized by industry manufacturers and software creators. In honor of this expanding art, let’s take a look at some of the top three tips for anyone that wants to begin creating their own fonts, regardless of their knowledge and expertise level.

1. Start with a Brief

Creating a typeface from scratch can be a drawn out and time consuming process so be sure to pack a bit of patience. It is best to begin the process only when you feel that you have developed a strong and clear vision of the final product that you are looking to achieve in response to a brief. In order to develop the brief, you will need to invest some time into research, as well as, some self-reflection. Take into consideration how you intend to use the font, whether it be just for your own personal use or for a project that will be used or seen by others. Just like with anything that you create, it is important to remember to consider your audience and base your design off of what will appeal to their tastes. Also consider what you are trying to achieve with the development of the new font. Is it strictly for personal expression or is it going to be used to alter the formatting of an important document? The sky is the limit in terms of options so it is important to make sure that your direction is firmly set when necessary.

2. Get Hands-on

Once you have decided on a clear and focused direction for the development for your typeface, it is often suggested that you go back to the basics and begin to draw or sketch it out with pen and paper. This is a good idea because there are no limitations when it comes to free-form handwriting, whereas many computer software programs can make the initial design more time consuming and frankly, awkward. It is also recommended that you use a good quality paper and writing utensil to help everything flow together more smoothly. Once you have everything you need, begin by sketching out a few characters of your typeface, being sure to outline the defining features that will be carried throughout the other characters of the font face. Once those have been clearly defined, it will be easier for you to develop and design the remainder of the characters on a digital platform.

3. Selecting your Software Program

Now that you have designed at least the first few characters of your typeface, and you are ready to get them into the computer to continue with your design, you will need to select a software program. It is a good idea to do your research on a few different programs and be sure to pick one that will work best for you based on your comfort level and the complexity of the program itself. The majority of illustrators will likely select Adobe. However, if you are not comfortable using a program like that there are other options out there like Lyphs, Robofont, and FontLab Studio. Most programs will be available on both MAC and Windows operating systems. Keep in mind that the majority of the software programs out there are pretty expensive but if you are just getting started out, you may be able to find smaller versions or trial versions of the programs available for free or smaller fee than the full version online. Again, be sure to do your research ahead of time to save yourself a great deal of time, money, and frustration down the line.

This process is meant to be one of self-expression, creativity, and fun. Do not let yourself get bogged down in the gritty details that could transform the enjoyable craft of developing a new font into a chore. Do you research, develop your focus and goal clearly, and enjoy the ride? For those that get good at it, there may even be an opportunity to sell the fonts to others for their own use and projects. Just like with any artistic skill or craft, typography is something that will take time to develop and get good at. The more that you practice and play with your characters, the further you will develop your skill and expand your creativity. Before you know it you will find yourself developing special characters and new font faces without even thinking about it.

Adobe XD for UX design

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The new Adobe XD for UX design is being praised everywhere for its user-friendly design and for the fact that is so easy to use. In the past, software additions and updates to major software programs like Photoshop have taken even advanced computer geeks a long time to recover from because of their steep learning curve. This simply is not the case with the new UX design. In fact, some are even praising Adobe for making it so user-friendly that it actually works more like a mobile app than a desktop addition in terms of experience.

The software has been organized into two separate tabs to make it easier to use. Tab one is Design and tab two is Prototype.

Design – Under the Design tab is where you will be able to actually build your layouts. You can simply click and drag to make or change many shapes and expand upon your page. One of the great features of the program is that Adobe will highlight which corners are aligned with other elements to assist you in spacing each one of your elements. Of course that is fairly standard but still useful all the same. The “repeat grid” tool will now allow you to be able to perfectly duplicate or repeat all of your wireframes across the entire page. If you want to try to round off the corners of a box all you have to do is select a certain anchor point and then just point and pull. Say that you find that you need a custom button like a marker for a map. Of course you could go back to your Illustrator in order to build it. Or, with the new XD feature, you can utilize the shape design tool to build one.

Prototype – Under the Prototype tab you will be able to do some pretty exciting things, such as add interactivity to your images or build a button-linked workflow for your entire website or mobile app. This portion of the software is particularly impressive and shockingly easy to use. For this all you need to do is select any object, like an icon, and wait for a small arrow to appear beside it. Now drag that arrow onto the screen of your choosing and that is it. It’s linked. Pretty neat huh? Another thing you can do is install some basic animated transitions to occur in sequence. That way you will be able to get a feel for the way that the user interface will actually appear and fell when it Is in motion. Once you feel that you have achieved your final product and are happy with the design, just hit the record button and you will be able to go through your app to export the final results and even share your demo.

Without a doubt, this is one of the most user-friendly and valuable additions ever to be released by Adobe. The company is famous for creating amazing software that is often too difficult for the average computer user, but that is simply not the case with the new UX design. Anyone with a basic understanding of the existing program will be thrilled with the new addition in terms of its shallow learning curve and awesome intuitive features.

Kyle’s Brushes for Photoshop

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An Unexpected Commodity

Illustrator Kyle Webster is making waves with his creation of a set of digital paintbrushes that are all for use in Adobe Photoshop. According to Wired, Kyle has managed to collect an esteemed list of clients that include The New Yorker, The Atlantic, and The Wall Street Journal. However, he says that he is actually making the majority of his income through the sales of his virtual paint brushes which allow illustrators like him to create the appearance of s scratchy technical pen, a dusty pastel, or dreamy watercolor paint.

These digital paintbrushes are being used by budding artists and college students, as well as, major players like the artists that work for Grand Theft Auto, Nike, and Game of Thrones. Amazingly, the preloaded paintbrushes have turned into a six-figure income for the business savvy artist. This is yet another example of a lucrative happy accident in the art and entrepreneur sector. Webster says that due to his eclectic collection of clients, he constantly had to change his style in order to meet their needs. Thant’s when he came up with the idea for the invention of virtual paintbrushes that would allow him to seamlessly transition from one style to the next or combine them to appeal to customers.

Of course with most fine things, the brushes didn’t happen overnight. It took Kyle more than a decade of playing with them to get the final result. Once they were finished, he began showing them to friends and that’s when they started asking for the tools for themselves. It was then that Kyle realized he had something to sell and had found a market with a need. Webster told Wired “Creating brushes, in my spare time, that emulated different kinds of natural media, allowed me to experiment more and then eventually work those experiments into paying work.”

What the Professionals Are Saying About the Brushes?

As stated previously, Kyle boasts a pretty impressive clientele list among the illustration profession. Of course, like with any product, these artists had some pretty strong opinions in terms of the brushes and their abilities to affect their work and results. Sophie Diao, credited with being the one to change the occasional and interesting changes to Google logo that appear from time to time had this to say about the brushes “I especially enjoy that some of his brushes have an unpredictability to them, in terms of how pen pressure and pen tilt affect them.” Here is what a few other major artists and illustrators had to say:

“Kyle’s brushes mimic the ‘happy accidents’ that make painting so magical, and allow them to occur in digital work.” – Samantha Kallis, Disney.

“So many brushes online act more like rubber stamps than true paint brushes. Kyle’s brushes look totally natural, and one brush can give a variety of results.” – Chris Turnham, worked on Laika’s Coraline.

“His brushes really get me excited about drawing again.” – Paolo Rivera, a comics artist whose work includes Wolverine and Daredevil.

Of course the positive reviews have been well received by Kyle. He says that despite the development and sales of the brushes cutting into his time for drawing, they have added a lot of value for him. They have also enabled him to be able to accept only the gigs that he wants to work on because money is no longer an issue. “Most of the work I am making now for clients is work I am proud to show in my portfolio, as opposed to a mix of jobs that pay the bills and keep me busy,” says Webster. That is essentially the dream of every starving young artist that enters the field with hopes of one day being recognized for the impact of their work.