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Rachael Presky for Adobe

last updated 06 November 2020

title Illustrations for the Adobe Creative Residency Community Fund

Bright Artist Rachael Presky began her career in illustration after completing a Masters in Graphic Design in 2017. Specialising in digital illustration, Rachael has made a mark creating illustrations for clients such as Klarna, Breathe Magazine, Fizz Creations, Brio Magazine and Minds Matter San Francisco.

Rachael’s unique and elusive contemporary style has led to her gaining recent recognition as the ‘Rising Star Award Finalist’ in the Design Week Awards 2020. Recently, Rachael has been collaborating with Adobe on a variety of creative projects. We caught up with Rachael to discuss her collaborative work with Adobe and her creative process.

title Illustration for Adobe Fresco session

How did your involvement with Adobe start?

Back in early lockdown, Adobe asked me to join a live-stream where I could draw live using Adobe Fresco and choose what I wanted to draw. It was a Thursday, the day of the ‘Clap for Carers’, so I thought it would be a good idea to draw a tribute to the heroes of the NHS and key workers. I also took the opportunity to create a colouring sheet of it, which is still up in my neighbours’ windows!

Adobe Live session

What’s been your favourite Adobe Live session?

I really love drawing and illustrating live. I think my favourite was the session where I drew everything, from sketch to final illustration, with the audience giving me suggestions! In May someone had dropped out last minute, so we thought it might be fun to create a character based on one of the regular Friday hosts, Tony Harmer, and ask the audience to draw along. Tony is known for dressing up in silly outfits so the audience chose the pose to start, then the outfits and colours. This session went down really well and over 1000 people tuned in live. It was really fun to work on an illustration that was completely unplanned and have people join in the draw-along. It’s quite exciting not having a clue on how your final piece will turn out, and I got a completely different final result to what I would have had without those suggestions. This session was also featured on Creative Boom’s ‘10 tutorials to watch’.

Adobe Live session

What did you do next with Adobe?

I applied for the Adobe Creative Residency Community Fund, and was thrilled to be accepted for a project start in July. I was commissioned to create 6 illustrations for the Adobe Education Exchange alongside 5 other illustrators. The briefs were based on only one word for each illustration, for example ‘Art and Architecture’, ‘Humanities’, ‘Science and Engineering’, etc. I work a lot with editorial projects so I’m used to lots of words to inspire me, so coming up with 2-3 ideas per topic was a little challenging!

title Development sketches for the Adobe Education Exchange

What was your creative process in responding to the residency brief?

After the initial meeting with the other illustrators, we had a week to come up with 2-3 sketches per topic. I set my mind back to my school days to remember what we learnt in each topic and came up with differing ideas, from fairly conceptual ones, to objects and people. It actually gave me an opportunity to use some ideas I’d had floating around but not had the brief to use yet! Once the team had chosen their favourites, it was on to colouring! I usually stick to a colour palette across all illustrations, so they become a set, but this time I changed it up a little depending on the topic and how it ‘felt’.

title Illustrations for Adobe Creative Residency brief

What was the best thing about taking part in the residency?

There is a big community with a huge base of people who are talented in their respective fields; it’s lovely to be able to get inspiration from those people! We had a Slack group which was really useful to ask other illustrators and creators questions.

title Illustration for Adobe Creative Residency brief

Rachael Presky is represented by Helen Biles — to work with Rachael please get in touch.

You can see more of Rachael’s work in her portfolio.

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