Author: Rikard

The Rise of Grotesque

It may come as a surprise to many modern designers that the ubiquitous font Gotham was released in 2002. In other words, the movie Matrix existed in a world where the Gotham font did not. Originally commissioned by GQ magazine, the Gotham font was designed in 2000 by type designer Tobias Frere-Jones, inspired by the letterforms of architectural signage throughout New York City. The intent of the design was to create a font which was both fresh and modern, but also felt familiar and credible. To this day, Gotham holds a special place in my heart as a graphic...

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Brand New Course! Fairy Specimen Photo Composite

I’ve just released a new course called Fairy Specimen Photo Composite. The course takes you through the workflow of putting together the above photo composite. I was inspired by a similar composite I saw on Pinterest and decided to do my own take on it. After finding a model who had some of the elven features commonly associated with fairies, I did a photoshoot of her with the final composite in mind. I knew she’d be in a jar, sitting on something. I also knew I wanted her lit from both sides. After taking the model photo, I did...

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Color Grading with Gradient Maps in Photoshop

In this video tutorial, I show you how to use Gradient Maps to color grade an image. You can follow along with the tutorial by downloading the files below.   Gradient Map Preset Pack Download Your FreebieSubscribe to our newsletter and get your freebie! Your email address won't be shared. And you won't be spammed. I'll let you know when new posts are written. And you'll get more future freebies. UNLOCK! You have successfully subscribed. In addition to being awesome, you now get this freebie as a token of my appreciation....

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The Dragon Tamer

This composite was inspired by a piece of art that’s been bouncing around the 3D art community for many, many years. The painting is called “One More Time” by Steven Stahlberg, and you can see it here. It’s been in my “inspiration folder” through at least 6 different computers (which isn’t a great commentary on the longevity of computers, but that’s a different story). When it came time to doing my next photo composite course, I decided I would try to recreate the painting as a photo realistic composite. I took the photos the model using a Nikon D750...

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Logos that Look Lazy

Regardless of the final result, logo design is hardly ever easy and there’s always a lot more that’s gone into a design than one would expect. But, I’m a true believer in results speaking louder than words—and when it comes to logo designs, here are some prominent, big name logos that simply come across as lazy. In reality, I’m guessing a lot of effort went into these, but the results tell a different story:     Sorry, but a round sperm about to ovulate an egg simply doesn’t say anything about the brand’s offering, story or anything else. The...

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Creating an Eclipse in Photoshop

Here’s a tutorial on how to create an eclipse in Photoshop. In addition to basic compositing techniques, you’ll learn how to use the noise gradient to create a burst like image. The assets used in this composite can be found here: Man Standing in Snow — by Jason Strull Stars at Night – by Noah Silliman Full Moon – by Pedro Lastra Lens Flare – by Rikard Rodin You can also subscribe to my newsletter below and get a download link to all of the above files along with the high-resolution final composite created in the tutorial.   Download...

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Using Polar Coordinates in Photoshop

I was inspired by the Photoshop splash screen to create a piece of art using one of the oldest effects in Photoshop—polar coordinates. Polar Coordinates is an effect that takes a rectangular image and warps it into a circular image. You can also do the opposite, taking a circular image and warping it back into a rectangular image. There are quite a few uses for the tool, although I would guess the most common is in creating environmental maps for 3D programs. This is certainly where I’ve used it the most in the past. But aside from its 3D...

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A Graphic Designer’s Guide to Visual Hierarchy

One of the most important tasks of a designer is to create a hierarchy—to create an order of importance to the elements of a design so as to direct attention and make information more easily assimilated. Hierarchy is defined as: A logical way to express the relative importance of different elements by providing a visual guide to their organization. A text hierarchy helps make a layout clear, unambiguous and easier to digest. A text hierarchy can be established in numerous ways by employing different weights, sizes and styles of a font. Alternatively, a simple hierarchy can be achieved by...

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The Middle Ground Between Art & Design

Is there a middle ground between design and art? I would say there is—and from a designer’s perspective, it’s the promised land; the Shangri-La of both design and art. Most designs require some art. I’d go so far as to say that design is “art with a purpose.” Whereas art by itself can be self-expression or done entirely for oneself, as soon as that art has a purpose—i.e., selling a product or an idea—it’s crossed into the realm of design. But where the line becomes blurry is the fact that Art does have an inherent purpose. When one creates a...

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The Graphic Designer’s Guide to Embossing

Everything you need to know to start using embossing in your design projects and appear to know what the hell you’re doing. Embossing is simply raising the surface of your design so that it has some depth. It’s the real world equivalent to bevel effects and likely derives from relief sculptures—resembling most closely the bas-relief where the depth is perceived as a lot more than is actually there. The word itself is old French, coming from em (into) and boce (protuberance). As for how it relates to graphic design—embossing has been used as a finish for high end printed products for hundreds of...

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Showcase of Thrilling Game of Thrones Inspired Fan Art

Artists, designers and illustrators love to produce fan art for their favourite movies and TV shows. As one of the biggest elements of modern pop culture, Game of Thrones has been the inspiration for many pieces of tribute art and personal works, with creatives making various kinds of digital paintings, illustrations and designs. In today’s […] Source: Showcase of Thrilling Game of Thrones Inspired Fan...

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Free Star Wars Model Pack!

Video Copilot just released some highly detailed 3D models of various Star Wars lightsabers, droids and ships! Check out the renders and download the files at the link below. Source: Free Star Wars Model...

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