The history of the creation of Adobe Photoshop
Date of creation of Adobe Photoshop is not marked on any calendar. In 2005, the anniversary of the release of the program, which you and many others use the most. Everything happened 17 years ago *, in February, when Adobe launched the first version of Photoshop – 1.0, a graphic editor, which is still the most popular among artists, photographers and designers. Photoshop today occupies the leading position among the editors of raster graphics, and is also the only program that has acquired its own form of the verb.
Photoshop takes its beginning much earlier. The program, on the screen saver of which the list of developers today is 41, previously belonged to two brothers, Thomas and John Knoll. Since childhood, his father instilled in his sons a love of art and computer technology. In the photo lab of his father, which was located in the basement, Thomas studied the basics of color correction and contrast, and John was picking with interest at an old Apple. In 1984, my father bought one of the first Macintoshes, the functionality of which greatly disappointed the brothers – this was the beginning of the creation of a program that will bring millions of dollars in profit in the future.
Until 1987, John Knoll worked at Industrial Light and Magic (ILM) – a division of Lucasfilm, which specialized in creating special effects for the project “Stars Wars” (“Stars Wars”). Thomas at this time was writing a dissertation on image processing – obtaining the degree of a candidate of sciences for him was the most important at that time. Having finally disappointed in the new Apple Mac Plus – the monitor of the newly purchased computer did not display half-tone images (Grayscale images), Thomas began to write a program that will help correct the situation.
Ironically, at ILM, John also worked on the image processing process. Struck by his brother’s success, John suggested that Tom join forces. In his book, Computer Graphics Basics, John wrote: “As soon as I saw the results of Thomas’s work, I remembered the image processing software at Pixar, the similarities were striking.” From that moment we began the joint development of a more complex and sophisticated program, which was later called Display.
A short time later, John bought a new Macintosh II with a color screen and convinced Thomas to rewrite “Display” to work with color images. Moreover, the more John worked with “Display”, the more functions he demanded from the program: color correction, import and saving of files in various formats, etc.
Work on the program distracted Thomas from writing a dissertation, but still he was glad of it. Some time later, Tom developed an innovative method for selecting a separate image area and then working with it, as well as sets of image processing applications that would later be known as plug-ins. Then there were developed: tones settings (Levels), balance control function, control of hues and saturation (Hue and Saturation). These capabilities were key in Photoshop, because at that time such functions were present only in specialized software that was in laboratories – or in ILM.
In 1988, “Display” was renamed to “ImagePro”. The program was modern at the time, John hoped that they had a chance to sell it in the form of a commercial application. Thomas was against it, moreover, he had not finished his dissertation yet and it would take a lot of time and labor to develop a fully completed software product. After analyzing the competitors, the brothers realized that the ImagePro they had created was ahead of their counterparts in many ways.
Began the search for investors. No one knows exactly where the name “Photoshop” came from, they say, the name was suggested by one of the potential publishers, while the software was shown – the name, as they say, stuck. In the earliest versions, the name “PhotoShop” appeared on the screen saver – nowadays there is the same trend, very often there are names like “ExTraneous CapitaliSation”.
Surprisingly, most software makers turned their corporate noses in the direction of Photoshop or tried to develop similar programs on their own. Only one company was able to buy Photoshop – it was Adobe, but it was still far from a mutually beneficial solution. Scanners manufacturer Barneyscan offered the brothers to supply Photoshop with their products, which resulted in about 200 copies of the program sold under the brand name Barneyscan XP.
Fortunately for the future of digital graphics, negotiations with Adobe did not last long – soon John came to the company to draw more attention to his product. There he met with Russell Brown and showed him the possibilities of the program, then Photoshop was demonstrated to the art director, who was pleased with what he saw.