If you’re an illustrator and don’t know Kyle T. Webster’s work, you may actually be familiar with his brushwork. Founder of KyleBrush.com and international award-winning illustrator, Kyle’s custom-made brushes are the world’s best-selling Photoshop brushes. And during Adobe MAX last year, we announced that all of Kyle’s 1,000+ brushes would be exclusively available to Creative Cloud members. And even better—that Kyle would officially be joining our team!
Today, Kyle is a Design Evangelist on the Adobe Design team and working on a variety of projects, all while making a big impact. When I ask Kyle what his day-to-day looked like as a Design Evangelist—an ultimately ambiguous job title—I was surprised to hear about the scope of his work.
“I deal with the illustration audience and I’m an ambassador to that community. That means I will soon be live streaming frequently and creating tutorial videos. But I also work with our product teams to help prototype and test new software. For the Adobe Capture team, I help improve their UI for brush and pattern creation. And I work with marketing teams to help brand our drawing and painting apps at Adobe.”
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He pauses. “Oh! And I’m still making brushes!”
“That’s a relief!” I say. “How is that process even like?” I ask.
“My brushes are always made from one of several places. Sometimes it’s when I’m working on something and realize I can work more efficiently with a custom brush. Other times it comes out of me playing around. I’ll combine random textures and shapes and sometimes I get something really cool.”
A dream come true
When you talk to Kyle about his work you can tell he’s passionate about it. And a key word keeps popping up—play. He explains to me that a lot of his creativity stems through playing, and that inspiration comes in a variety of ways.
Then, I can’t help but think about what led him to pursue an opportunity at Adobe in the first place. After all, with more than ten years as a successful freelance artist, joining Adobe was a big career shift.
“To put it simply, I felt that I reached a point where I wasn’t growing anymore. I couldn’t continue to move beyond that point without more collaboration or resources. I wanted to help shape and change actual advancements in drawing and painting software, and that wouldn’t be possible without Adobe.”
And luckily, he’s felt like he’s made the right choice. Looking back, he tells me that it was less of a question of if he should join Adobe, but when.
“You know, it’s funny. When my daughter was born nine years ago, I was telling my wife that if someday I decided to work for a company, I would want it to be at a place where I would be able to do cool things. I named three of my dream companies and Adobe was one of them!”
How Adobe Design embraces play
As for what the best part is about working for Adobe, Kyle was all about the direct impact he gets to make. “I really wanted to make a difference for illustrators. I’m one of them and I want to make it better for them. Now I can! I can influence those big decisions. As part of the Adobe Design team, anyone can present an idea, and you have people who help make it happen.”
The Adobe Design team is made up of over 160 designers, engineers, researchers, program managers, writers, and makers. Their mission is to create smart, sophisticated applications for a wide variety of devices, and their expertise ranges from interaction and visual design to research, information architecture, and programming. It’s an environment fostered by diverse thinking and experimentation, which is exactly what makes the Adobe Design team unique, says Kyle.
“The team values experimentation. We’re all playing here, but in a productive way. In my opinion, innovation and creativity comes out of a combination of play and experience. There’s so much of that here.”
It’s in this environment that Kyle is allowed to really be inspired and work with a creative and collaborative team. For those looking to join Adobe, Kyle couldn’t be more clear with his advice and what to expect.
“Make sure you know how your passion can be brought into your work. That’s how you keep coming to work and making valuable contributions. Adobe seeks out those people and wants to help you forge a fulfilling career.”
Before we part ways, I ask him one last question—as an artist, where does he get his best work done?
“Actually, the best place for me is in the shower! It turns off every part of my mind except for random thoughts,” he says.
I laugh. You really never know where you’ll find inspiration.
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