The Community Winners of the Take 10: Impulsive Challenge

In February 2016, Adobe Create Magazine hosted the first Take 10 challenge that was open to the community. We gave you 10 images from Adobe Stock and asked you to use those images (and only them) to create an artwork inspired by the theme “impulsive.”

Judge Erik Johansson, an artist who works in Adobe Photoshop CC, selected his 10 favorites from the entries that met the criteria. Here are the 10 winners, all of whom will receive year-long subscriptions to the Adobe Creative Cloud and Adobe Stock.

Niall Gallagher used the popular double-exposure technique in his Photoshop image: “I thought, impulsiveness comes from within, so why not put everything inside the subject? After I masked the subject’s head, I experimented with clipping masks, rotation, overlays, and gradients,” he explains. “When it comes to this type of design, I don't do development sketches, I just keep tweaking all the images, changing their position and scale until I feel that it is a good design.” Gallagher is studying Creative Multimedia at the Dundalk Institute of Technology in Ireland. As Johansson's top choice, Gallagher will receive a Fujifilm camera in addition to the subscriptions.


Mariann Balla is a graphic designer based in London. Like a contestant in a Project Runway unconventional materials challenge, she broke down the stock images and built them up again into clothing-like adornments. “The trees were a perfect collar,” she notes. Because some of the elements worked well in warm tones and others in cool tones, she divided her composition in two. The two heads were initially side by side, but then, “I realized they would look perfect as a playing card, so I rearranged the elements to look like the queen in a deck of cards. I had to sacrifice the rest of the collars on the necks, though — what a miss!”


Geoff Bloom of Peabody, Massachusetts, is primarily an Adobe Illustrator CC user, but he used Photoshop for his Take Ten composition. “I was inspired by technology and nature. I wanted to make the image be mechanical (as seen in her robotic neck, using the reflected glass image as a circuit board, and spine) while having her skin and hair become part of a mountain landscape.”


Jimmy Bui is a professional photographer who practices his craft in Riverside, California. “I love doing in-camera double exposure portraits when I'm shooting weddings,” he says, “so I thought I'd challenge myself and try a multiple-exposure image in Photoshop. My inspiration was my love for nature and how I’m willing to drop whatever I'm doing and escape.”


Nic Calvert is a digital creative in Middlesbrough, England. He learned of the challenge a day before the submission deadline. “I have never entered a design contest before,” he says, “but due to the tight deadline and ‘Impulsive’ theme I thought, ‘Why not give it a go?’ I am looking for a full-time design role and, whether I won or not, the contest was an opportunity to take a break from job hunting.”


Mike Campau is a digital artist in Michigan. He says that although he doesn’t usually enter contests, the “impulsive” theme caught his fancy: “I thought, ‘Why not do something I never do, on an impulse!’” He gave himself an hour but finished in 30 minutes, so he created a second image in the remaining time. While it’s not an official contest submission, you can see it on his Behance page.


Judy LaVerde is a graphic designer and photographer based in Livingston Manor, New York. Her composition would be at home on the runway of an avant-garde fashion show. “I like 18-century fashion, so the first thing that popped into my mind was a girl with a white wig."


Edward McGurrell is a creative multimedia student in Dublin, Ireland. When he was considering the “impulsive” theme, he asked himself, “What is more impulsive than the weather?” That led him to the concept of Mother Nature. “I created small biomes, and Mother Nature would breathe on them and change them,” he explains.


Maxwell Morlock is a designer for the Minnesota Timberwolves, a pro basketball team in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Since the theme was "impulsive," Morlock decided to create the first thing that popped into his head—which happened to be giving the woman's profile new hair made out of fish fins.


Roger Ridpath wanted his composition to portray a woman who was either having a dream or who was in someone else's dream. He used Photoshop for most of the work, then moved into Adobe Lightroom for final coloring and blending. Ridpath lives in Kansas City, Missouri.

March 3, 2016