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CreativePro Week Conference Speaker Spotlight: Theresa Jackson, the Photoshop Junkie

Welcome to our Speaker Spotlight series, designed to highlight some of our CreativePro Week 2017 Conference speakers, which will be in Atlanta, Georgia, May 22–26. We’ve assembled a dream team roster of Photoshop, InDesign, and Illustrator gurus, and thought you’d like to get to know what makes them tick, why they’re passionate about what they do, and what you can expect to learn from them at the conference.

The Theresa Jackson File


Staged Flashback Room at Adobe MAX 2015

Geek Cred: Theresa Jackson is an instructor, designer, photographer, digital artist, wide-format columnist, loving wife, Mom, soon-to-be second-degree blackbelt, Adobe Community Professional who loves Mexican food and hates meat (but is too lazy to be a vegetarian).

Hails from: I am super fortunate to live in San Diego, California. I absolutely love it here and do not take it for granted. It’s all I know, my parents met and married in Detroit but moved us to Cali when I was only two.

First job: After graduating in 1984 with a fine arts degree, I stumbled into a prepress job. Within a few years the dawn of the digital age brought constant evolving technology to the graphics industry. I thrived on this. Since that time I have worked in prepress, color management, project management and product development.

First computer: PowerMac 7100.

Lefty or Righty: Righty.

What tech hardware do you use most: Wacom tablet.

Favorite Website(s): Facebook. One of the biggest challenges I have faced working freelance is the feeling of solitude. Up until this point I was used to working in an office and interacting with my colleagues. Facebook provides the perfect place for me to connect. I also find myself using Behance for inspiration.

Favorite Authors: Recently read The Creative Fight by Chris Orwig. It was very inspirational but the truth is I prefer listening so TED Talks, Webinars, and Podcasts are more my speed. Really enjoy TheFIX by Sean Duggan.

Favorite TV Shows: Watch a lot of Netflix but I am addicted to a two cable shows Better Call Saul & Grace and Frankie.

At 6am I am usually: in bed, unless I am hiking. Two days a week I make it a point to get up early to hike and connect with nature. Being outdoors is very important to me. Thankfully, my trusty side-kick Jameson makes me leave the computer once a day to take him for our three mile walk around the neighborhood or golf course.

When did you discover your passion for photography? My very first memory of being drawn to art was in first grade. We had an artist visit the class, I ran to the front row believing he was there specifically for me. Adulthood took control and I veered from this path for a brief time only to re-discover it when my youngest son was a senior in high school. All of a sudden I found myself enrolled in a local photo club, heading off to Photoshop World and constantly on photowalks. The passion was definitely rekindled that year!

If you could only use one piece of software for the rest of your life what would it be? Photoshop. I spend most of most of my waking hours working and playing in Photoshop. I love Photoshop, and I love, love, love teaching others how to use it. Getting someone excited and hooked on Photoshop is so rewarding.

Current Projects:  I currently run my design business, Orchard View Color, teach Digital Darkroom courses at UCSD Extension, speak at local photography groups, participate as a judge at the San Diego County Fair, and show my digital art and photography at gallery shows.

I believe that the best way to learn new skills is to just do it. Decide on a project and start playing. Explore the mobile workflow and how they work together and what doesn’t. Perfect example, I happen to live next to the Safari Park and have an annual pass. I was feeling the need to draw so I started creating a series of Zoo Portraits using the Adobe CC mobile applications. I have published four so far and am currently in the midst of creating the fifth one. They are available for viewing on Behance and since I am really interested in the workflow, I try to include what software I used and demonstrate some of the steps I used to create each piece.

Her CreativePo Week 2017 Session: Everyone should come to my session, at least anyone who is interested multiple Adobe apps for one project. The title is Consistent Color Across the Adobe Apps“What Are The CMYK Values for Pantone 187 Red?” We know the answer depends on the output, but few designers really understand this. Join us in Atlanta and be one of the few. ;-)


Social Media: 


Register today for the CreativePro Week 2017 Conference! Four conferences back-to-back: The PS/AI: The Conference for Photoshop and Illustrator Users, The InDesign Conference, PePcon: The Print and ePublishing Conference, and the Creative Developers Summit.

Don’t miss out on these great conferences and a great early bird deal: Get $100 off any multi-day registration now through March 31st.

We’ll see you in beautiful Atlanta, May 22–26, 2017.

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One Comment on “CreativePro Week Conference Speaker Spotlight: Theresa Jackson, the Photoshop Junkie

  1. I wish I could attend; I would love to see Theresa speaking at the conference. She is a super-talented artist and I love her zoo series on Behance, using Creative Cloud iPad apps in concert with the full desktop programs. She inspired me to dip my toe in those waters as well. My results weren’t anywhere near as stunning as Theresa’s work, but it’s cool to use these tools and libraries the way Adobe intended. :-)

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