David Bowie fan? And a makeup artist? This is for you then…

Adobe has today announced it is paying tribute to a true creative icon, David Bowie, by launching a new range of Bowie-inspired digital tools across Creative Cloud, encouraging people to freely explore their identities. The tools, created in partnership with Bowie 75, mark both Bowie’s 75th birthday and, later this week, the 50th anniversary of one of his most beloved alter egos – Ziggy Stardust.

The partnership – ‘Adobe x Bowie’ – sees the digitised tools available in Photoshop, Illustrator, Fresco, Substance and Adobe Express. Known for dramatic musical transformations, including his character Ziggy Stardust, Bowie was considered the original ‘chameleon’ of pop, thanks to his ever-changing appearance and sound. While he left behind an impressive musical legacy, which included 28 albums, and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996, his cultural legacy transcends music and time.

Inspired by his memorable, colourful and vibrant personas, Adobe is using these tools to invite people to explore their own forms of self-expression:

  • A range of make-up brushes named after some of his biggest hits, such as ‘Ashes’, ‘Changes’, ‘Major Tom’ and ‘Queen Bish’.
  • Adobe’s pattern sampler, that lets creatives sample the fabrics and patterns of Bowie’s most well-known outfits to turn them into something entirely new.
  • Brightly coloured backgrounds & 3D Substance props, inspired by David’s posters and album covers.
  • A sticker pack, drawing on iconic Bowie graphics such as the famous Aladdin Sane lightning bolt and Ziggy Stardust’s astral sphere.

This is the latest in an ongoing initiative by Adobe to bring to life historic tools from artists that have changed the world, and place them in the hands of modern creators. This was first launched with the digital recreation of Edward Munch’s paintbrushes, continued with the Lost Alphabets of Bauhaus Dessau, and was last seen in 2020, with the release of a vast array of brushes inspired by the legendary 1980s New York artist, Keith Haring.

Simon Morris, Senior Director of Marketing at Adobe: “We passionately believe that creativity is for all, and who embodies that ethos as much as David Bowie? A true icon who crucially believed that ‘art is inherent in everyone’. With these digital tools, we want to lift the limits of creativity and empower artistic expression – inspiring anybody with a story to tell and empowering them to create incredible personas, just like he did.”

“David’s creative works were incredibly subjective; always open to the interpretation of the individual,” said a representative of Bowie 75, the official campaign marking the artist’s 75th birthday. “That makes these new tools from Adobe a perfect way to celebrate his legacy, by encouraging other people to actively engage with art, personal expression and to unleash their inner creative personas.”

The digital tools are widely available now, for free – and fans are encouraged to try out the Bowie range, create their own personas here, and share their designs via the #AdobexBowie. They include over 150 graphics, colour swatches, vectors, patterns and stickers, created by Tina Touli, Kae Neskovic, Tabea Mahern and Thomas Hedger. They can be used across Creative Cloud apps, including: Photoshop, Photoshop for iPad, Illustrator, Illustrator for iPad, Fresco, Adobe Express and Substance family. In addition, 18 digital brushes created by Kyle T. Webster can be used in Photoshop, Photoshop for iPad and Fresco.

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