Illusions is the latest free theme available for download to Windows users via the Windows Personalization Gallery.Featuring imagery from Josh Sommers, the Illusions theme pack offers no less than 19 wallpapers designed to challenge the user’s perspective.
The combination of special effects and digital images reveal how Photoshop and a DSLR can be leveraged as artistic tools, sufficient to create representations of Sommers’ unique view of the world.
Sommers credits his mastery of Adobe Photoshop to the fanatical usage of the digital images editing tool since he was a kid, barely 12. It meant that he had to sacrifice enhancing his football skills during summer vacations, but I don’t doubt for a second that he has any regrets.
“My advice to others in gaining a high level of expertise is pretty straightforward: use it a lot, and always press yourself to improve upon what you’ve achieved in the past. For me that means I’m always pushing the envelope and holding myself to the highest standard, which requires a lot of persistence,” he stated.
“If I am not 100% satisfied with a piece, I’m willing to scrap it and try again. I’ve spent a lot of time banging my head on the wall trying to achieve something specific, and I think to gain a high level of expertise you have to be willing to endure those moments, and keep trying until you get what you want.”
Josh works as the Lead Software Developer and Creative Director at Interbill, but he’s a man of many talents, with a string passion for music, which is also a big influence.
In addition to Photoshop, Sommers relies on a Canon Digital Rebel XTi for snapping the images that serve as the rough canvas for his digital masterpieces. The Canon Digital Rebel XTi was acquired around November of 2006.
“A few weeks later I joined Flickr, where I saw the work of many talented photographers and artists, and something clicked inside. Suddenly I made the connection between my photography and my lifelong experience with Photoshop. All of the work I had done in Photoshop up to that point had been OK, but I never really felt very proud of it,” Sommers said.
“To me it was all just digital doodling, and I never felt that I was truly expressing myself in any way. But that all changed in an instant. With the vast amount of inspiration I found on Flickr my creativity just exploded. The result of that explosion is represented by the complete contents of my Flickr stream, all of which has been created since I purchased the Digital Rebel.”
I have included preview of the wallpapers packed inside the Illusions theme, but users can simply download and install it in Windows 7, it’s free.