[GFX] What got you started?

Six

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How did you get started with Photoshop (or GIMP, or any other program) graphic design? What sparked your interest to learn how to use these programs and create signatures and avatars?



You first. :ryan:
 

Notorious

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Was nearly a decade ago and I was fascinated with how people were able to create artwork on a computer, specifically avatars and signatures actually. I was always requesting artists to make me things and I seen how talented each person was, I like drawing and it just seemed like the next logical step so I got photoshop and its been history ever since. Took some classes in highschool to supplement my knowledge then kept practicing, would have continued on with college but I learn a lot better researching and practicing on my own. It's definitely worth learning even though in the beginning everything seems a bit daunting but now I know photoshop like the back of my hand.

How about you Six?
 

The Witch

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I was bored one day, we had no internet and we were snowed in. My mom knew I was bored and so she showed me GIMP and I just messed around in it. I kept messing around in it randomly for a few months. It wasn't until I won my first SOTW here that I started to become pretty serious about it, though. Prior to that, I made stuff for my friend and she really inspired me to keep going.
 

Six

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Yeaaaaars ago, about the time I joined this forum, I was really having one of those Final Fantasy VII (Cloti) craving moments again. I believe it was back in 2008, when I was messing around trying to make some signatures of the two, and joined this forum to join the (then active) pairing clubs, and show off my GFX goodies. I was so proud, I wish I still had them because they were absolutely terrible. I kept making the same exact pieces, but changing the text, until people on here started telling me I should make something different. :lew:

I then kinda got interested in graphics in general. Site Banners, wallpapers, signatures, you name it. I still love it. I do wish our forum was a bit more active when it comes to the GFX area, but I have to remind myself quite often that it's a gaming forum after all... :lew: Can't wait for SOTW to be back up though, hope all of you join in as well. :D
 

Notorious

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Some of the best artists are on gaming forums, I'll also definitely be taking part. The more active this section seems the more active it will get, that applies to most of the forum in general but I think if even if it was just a handful of us taking part in the SOTW for a little bit we'll probably get others more and more interested.

At the very least we'll all have a little bit of fun competition weekly. You're both going down. ;)
 

Missing in Action

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I started having an interest in GFX art from my brother, who dwelled in it. Back in 2002 it was? (I am old) :D
He used photoshop and was super good at rendering, placement and colour.

I only started it myself last year.
But I still remember what he taught me back then.

I liked it so much, I decided to do a digital media and technology course/study around it.
So far done cert 1 and onto cert 2 this year.
 

Mitsuki

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Mark got me into it. I had no idea what Photoshop was all about. I actually gave up on it after a couple days used because I just didn’t understand it. Didn't touch it for a few months, until I finally deleted the program. But I gave it a whirl again after seeing everyone's SOTW entries. I was inspired by @Lirael at the time too, especially @Angel Valentine ... she created a Darth Vader moogle set for me, and I fell in love with it... the rest is history. I gave it another chance and here I am, studying graphic design, making digital magazines, doing the newspaper for my college, and trying to make my own business. Funny how things work.
 
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Miko

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I think I was 11 or 12 years old... Definitely young.

My uncle (who was close in age to my brother) had taken a few courses and introduced my brother to Photoshop (He's now in the printing industry!) They had been taking Final Fantasy characters, mostly FFVII, and used official/fan art to modify and super-impose over old DBZ trading cards. They even used actual foil to make the 'shiny' cards :tearjoy: They were actually really good though, all considering! I think they actually were able to make up some kind of game out of it too.

Anyway, during this time I had started foruming around and getting involved more with people. I wanted to make my own signature though, and my brother one day sat down and tried to teach me all he knew and had learned from my uncle.

You guys - I can remember slowly using the lasso tool to select characters out of backgrounds and STARTING OVER whenever I accidentally let go of the mouse and it made the selection. I had no idea how to add or subtract from the selection! If I let go of the mouse it was just "Oh well! Better start over!" - The hand cramps.

Anyway, I became obsessed with making signatures and avatars. Mostly for other people but I was rotating my set all the time. I loved seeing a request thread popup and always jumped at the chance. I even made multiple sigs based on one request at a time. (They were so bad...)

There were different periods of learning I went through, but this was how I started out. I can even remember one of the signatures I made and being dogged on for using a lens flare. :cautious: Tsk.



This was a fun memory to think back on. :yay: I wonder if I could recreate what one of my old signatures would have looked like back in the day.
 

The Welsh Paddy

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I was about 15 at the time, if I recall correctly. First started going on online forums and saw some really cool banner pieces people had under their posts (Didn't know they were signatures at first!) and wanted one of my own. Didn't occur to me back then that some people liked to make them for other people either, so I acquired myself a free copy of Paint Shop Pro 7 and made one for myself with a stoned Welsh Dragon smoking a doob with an Irish flag in the background. It was pretty shite. :lew:

Since then, I just kept improving. Making more sigs, avatars, banners, wallpapers... Eventually moved on to splash pieces, posters, infographics, etc. and even managed to turn it into a meager form of income for a while, which was pretty neat. Haven't done anything graphic related in quite a long time though. :monster:
 

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I happened to stumble across the concept of signatures / avatars from online message boards around 2008 (aged 16) - it was also very easy to acquire Photoshop CS2 by 'alternate' means - so I had a go at using CS2 and did a relatively okay job at it; back in the day when it was cool to Topaz everything to death.

Graphic design has always been a love-hate relationship for me; I only enjoy it when I want to do it. During my most active message board days, 2008-2011, it became borderline factory-esque and I was churning out signatures & avatars because I could, not because I enjoyed it (it was only much later I realised I had done this). After 2011 I probably didn't use Photoshop until around 2014 and moved on to CS6, in which I did larger pieces for work to advertise events internally and social media (non-paid as I did on night shifts when I was working) - this very much went the same way as message board graphics, I enjoyed it until I didn't. As soon as I started imposing deadlines on myself, I hated it. I still do the odd larger pieces at work, but only as a favour for people I've worked with for a long time and when it fits in.

Now I've moved on to the MAC version of Adobe Creative Cloud as I use Lightroom as well. I use Photoshop CC for the design aspects and Lightroom CC to edit photos, albeit, I have incorporated both Photoshop and Lightroom into two of my three signatures for here.
 
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