Digital Artists FOREAL™ talk Compositing, the Creative Process and Keeping Art Interesting

Introducing three of Europe’s most talented digital designers. They’re bold, they’re brave and they’re willing to go where no designers have gone before! FOREAL™ are a talented duo from Trier in Germany. They’ve been busy blowing minds with their incredible designs…and the occasional tropical fruit. We’ve been lucky enough to talk to them about their design exploits.

Hey FOREAL™, Thanks for talking to us! Tell us how FOREAL™ studio began?

Compositing_FOREAL_German Blog Post

F: Our studio was founded by us, Benjamin Simon and Dirk Schuster, in a historical post office in Trier, Germany. After attending design school together, we honed our skills at various European studios with a focus on illustration and art direction. We quickly noticed that we worked together very effectively and there was no need for us to have an Art Director in order to get the job done. In 2012, we made the decision to run our own business. We wanted to use our own visual language, have our own independence and make our own choice of location.

Your work is incredibly varied. Where do you source your inspiration from?

F: We use a lot of advertising and photographic references for the visual look we aim to achieve in our artworks. We find lots of references for lighting and colours in general photographic and set design books. We also do a lot of scrolling on Behance and Instagram, to keep an eye on the latest visual trends, from other great designers. However, image content or narrative cannot be found in books or blogs. Good ideas often start through brainstorming and grow within the process.

How do you work together as a studio? Can too many designers spoil the final piece?

F: We actually have the opposite opinion! We know from experience that working alone on a single project can be a disadvantage in many cases. You get “creative tunnel vision” and you may not accept constructive feedback. You can get stuck in a dead end very easily.

We mostly work together on our projects. At different stages of the process, we swap the project and the other continues. A creative process always benefits from feedback, from someone who can bring a fresh perspective on a piece. However, in a large team, you always need an experienced art director to make final decisions.

What is the piece of work that you are most proud of and why?

F: We are proud of all the stuff we have created so there is no particular piece that we are most proud of. A single project does not make you a great artist; you have to keep it up.

FOREAL_Tropical Blast

Tropical Blast by FOREAL

Which Adobe CC tool could you not work without?

F: Definitely Photoshop. We always start our creative process with it, doing sketches and mood-boards. We also make final adjustments and touch-ups to a work, with Photoshop. In our type-based projects, we layout with Adobe Illustrator.

If you could go back 10 years and give your younger selves a piece of creative advice, what would it be?

F: We think it’s important to have negative experiences in your career as a creative, in order to recognize and appreciate when you are finally doing the stuff you’ve always dreamt of. If you are at the beginning of your career, don’t focus on the money! Experience is much more important and will lead to a satisfying career for the rest of your life.

Most importantly, we always tell people to be confident and to go out and show your stuff, even it’s not perfect. It will never be perfect. There is always something to improve.


Find out more about our amazing compositing competition #MakeItLayered (This competition is now closed)

Keep an eye on our compositing competition, which runs until 7th February. Our six lucky winners will each receive a free one year subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud! You can find out more about the competition and how to enter here. (This competition is now closed)