One reason I don’t do my graphic contrast illustration style too much nowadays is that I get tired of people telling me that I used Photoshop’s “Cutout” filter (Filter>Artistic>Cutout). It drives me crazy. It’s insulting. I enjoy when people have constructive critiques of my work. I have pretty thick skin and can take most comments. But the old “you used the cutout filter” really gets under my skin. I’m sure Shepard Fairey has received the same comments about his famous Obama poster.
The “Cutout” filter is just plain nasty. Yesterday I posted about how the AP wants $ for Shepard Fairey using their photo as the basis for his illustration. Well, I ran Photoshop’s “Cutout” filter on the AP image just to show how much better Fairey’s illustration is. The cutout filter doesn’t come close. It’s pure trash. And yes, I know about the trick to play with the Curves or Levels palettes first to get a nice contrast to the image before running Cutout. That’s what I did to the image above and still looks like junk.
I think the AP needs to see this comparison just so they know how much interpretative creativity was used on Fairey’s part in making this illustration.