So by now you’ve no doubt seen this image. It was created by Shepard Fairey for the Barack Obama presidential campaign. It has received quite a bit of press and raised a lot of money. I really love this iconic image and have always respected Shepard’s work.
So about a month ago the Obama campaign contacted me asking if I would create the next poster and I of course accepted. After some rather grueling all-nighters working on it, I finally finished today. The print has been sent off and should be out very soon. It will be a limited run of 5000 copies which will sell for $70 each. For obvious reasons I can’t post an image here yet, but I will as soon as I get the go ahead from the campaign.
A PSB file weighing in at 2.77GB with nearly 1000 layers, this is the most complex, largest scale work I have ever created. The print is 23×40" which had to be created at full 300dpi resolution, so you can imagine the strain this put on the hardware resources of the new computer. But the new machine came through; it powered through a lot of major operations with relative ease and I can honestly say I would never have been able to create the illustration without this new computer, my old one would have choked very early in the process. I did have to composite some of the imagery in separate files and bring them in flat at the end, particularly some of the complex vectors which had to be created in Illustrator and then imported. Most of the layers in the file were Smart Objects which were scaled at double the actual resolution of the image, so it was almost like working with an 80" image. Because of all this, it was often very tedious, having to wait quite a while for even simple operations to complete towards the end of the process.
Incidentally, this was the first project I created from start to finish within OSX. I really enjoyed working with OSX most of the time, but there were a few hiccups, particularly towards the end. I don’t blame them on OSX though, they seem to be issues specific to Photoshop’s memory handling as they began to crop up when the image became very large (in excess of 2GB)..Here’s to waiting for CS4 64bit for Windows. All in all it was a pretty smooth process considering the sheer size of the data being tossed around in there.
It’s a great honor for me to be able to work with the Obama campaign and I am very excited about the impending release of the print. I’ll definitely post more information as it becomes available, I hear it will go to print very shortly, next week probably. Stay tuned for a comp.