On 19 February 2010, Adobe Photoshop turns 20!
By now everyone know what Photoshop is! Just Google it and you get 757,000,000 hits, so it is pointless for me to explain what it is :) I just want to remember how this graphics editing program changed my career path forever.
In 1993 I was head hunted by Singapore Press Holdings and became their first Picture Editor for their Chinese Newspapers Division.
Thanks to the far sightedness of the Group Editor, Mr Loy; who believed in my proposals and approved me starting the first electronic picture desk system!
Was the Straits Times guys jealous! Ha ha ha... to let the Chinese papers beat them to it ;)
I went straight for the Apple Macintosh system instead of PC and we had Photoshop 2.5!
For me desktop computers are something really new! My prior experience of computer was using the Atex system which is pure command line and no graphics at all!
To learn fast I took a S$12,000 loan from the paper and bought myself an Apple Quadra 840AV and a 386 PC. I included Photoshop in the Mac which cost me a whopping S$8,400. Guess what, it only had 32MB of RAM!! Yes, it was the FASTEST computer around at that time!
One month later I was teaching Photoshop and scanning to the photographers :)
It was during this time that I discovered the colour correction and colour recovery powress of this marvelous program.The picture on the left was from a faded 1965 Kodak transparency, using Photoshop 2.5 I managed to recover much of the colour of this self portrait that was shot at Essendon Airport. Look at my camera bag!
No big deal? Well, in 1994; it was BIG DEAL! It was MAGIC :) So for the next few years, I eat, sleep and dream Photoshop! Ha ha ha...
That same year I was asked by my boss to provide a solution to a annual report photo shoot problem.
One of the Editor have to go oversea and while he is away, I have to do a group shot of the other bosses for the annual report.
My solution was to take a shot of the "missing" Editor before he go on his trip.
A week later when I managed to round up the other Editors and bosses. I took the group picture.
The selected colour negatives were then scanned with a Kodak RFS3570 scanner and the final "no one is missing" picture was assembled in Photoshop 3.0!
The final image that was used on the cover of the annual report.
In the same year I was using Photoshop as a colouring tool to add colour to monochrome images. I remember the countless hours I "paint" the only black and white shot of Le General's mum and dad to produce a colour print that they all love :)
A lot of times my Photoshop experience made others happy, like what I did for my dear father for his badly faded group photo of his Hakka Association in Hat Yai, Thailand. That print must be more than 50 years old when he show it to me!
And the result after many many hours of mid night oil...My dear dad was from left, the eighth person on the front; good looking guy :)
Thank you Photoshop, thank you Thomas and John Knoll for inventing it; and for the years of fun and extra income you bring me!
Happy 20th and many more 20th to come!