Adobe Unboxed With Julieanne Kost

Adobe Unboxed With Julieanne Kost

Whether you've seen her speaking on stages for Adobe, or lining magazine articles such as Fast Company’s “100 Most Creative People in Business” you surely have come across the legend and creative photographer that is Julieanne Kost.

I had the immense pleasure of interviewing her, and if you have read my articles, you'll know I'm all about keeping things lively. That's why I introduced my "Therapy in a Box" game into the mix. For the interview, I engaged Kost with a blend of topics such as the Future of Photoshop and more personal reflections like, "What would you say to your younger self?" Kost embraced the challenge with enthusiasm (and shockingly impressive writing skills.) I hope you enjoy this out-of-the-box sit down with Kost

What Is my best quality? (Photoshop and Lightroom)

Answering as Photoshop: I believe that my best quality would be my incredible flexibility. With my robust suite of creative tools, I can help to bring your creative visions to life. We can enhance and retouch photographs, design graphics, layout beautiful type, draw and paint, and even work with video and animations. And my engineering team continues to innovate so that I can adapt to meet the ever-changing needs of my customers. Together, you and I can transform your ideas into reality!

Answering as Lightroom Classic: I would have to say that my best quality is my streamlined workflow. Once you import your images, I can help you select, organize, and cull your shoot. We can enhance photos with speed and precision while adding your own personal style. We can then export to publish online, continue editing in Photoshop, or make ready for printing. Whatever you need to accomplish, my modules have you covered.

What Three Words Come To Mind When You Think About Me?

Ps: Unlimited. Creative. Vision.

Lr: Every. Photographer's. Dream.

What Is Something About Me That You Do Not Like? (Lightroom)

The only thing that I don’t like about Lightroom is that it wasn’t around when I was first learning photography! But with that said, I enjoy the opportunity to enhance and refine older images with today’s technology. I find that I can often increase the quality of past creations and breathe new life into my legacy work.

If You Could Change One Thing About Me, What Would It Be? (Photoshop)

Photoshop, I wish that you would let me spend more time with you! 

Would You Rather Have Access Only to Photoshop To Edit, or Not Photoshop but Any and All Other Editing Software?

Photoshop. Because I have mastered its tools so that the technology doesn’t get in the way of my creative process.

Where Do You See Photoshop in 5 Years?

Unfortunately, I can’t talk about the future…

What Have You Figured Out in Life?

I have figured out that I still have a lot to figure out. In fact, photography is a lot like life. Both are vast, dynamic, ever-changing landscapes which are always exciting because there is always something more to learn. Change and uncertainty are inevitable in both, and I try to embrace rather than fear them. I realize that things I consider having “changed” in my lifetime are simply the new “normal” for the next generation. Being able to adapt to change and being open to new experiences has led me to new opportunities and personal growth. Life really is short, and while change may take us on detours for which we hadn’t planned, it can also serve as a reminder that we should embrace the journey and not just the destination.

For International Women's Day 

Being a Woman in a Male-Dominated Space of Software Development, Have You Had To Overcome Biases or Stereotypes? If So, What Advice Would You Give Other Women Who Find Themselves in Similar Situations.

While I understand that many women in male-dominated fields, including software development, may face challenges related to biases and stereotypes, embracing diversity and inclusion are core to Adobe values. As a result, I have been fortunate to work in an environment that has helped pave the way for future generations of women in the field.

During my career, I have found it beneficial to:

  • Focus on my skills, expertise, and passion in my work. It’s essential to believe in your abilities and to stay authentic to yourself.
  • I have always tried to seek out mentors with more diverse experience and perspectives from whom I could learn. Building a network of colleagues can provide valuable insights, resources, and encouragement along your career.
  • Don’t be afraid to speak up, negotiate, and advocate for yourself. Many biases are unconscious and pointing them out in a professional and constructive manner can help address and contribute to their recognition and eventual correction.

What Are You Still Un-learning?

I’m still unlearning the notion that failure is inherently negative and something to be avoided.

Failure is a natural and valuable part of the learning process. When I take risks, especially in my photography and art, I find that I come up with more interesting and unique solutions. Embracing failures is an essential part of the creative process that allows me to break the rules, look at the world from a different perspective, and try new approaches to problem-solving.

As a perfectionist, I find that I often need to make a conscious effort to “let go” in order to push the boundaries of what is considered to be “correct” or “acceptable”. When I don’t take a chance on failure, I find myself playing it safe - repeating the same concepts, making the same images, and telling the same story. Personally, I’d rather grow from failure, than stagnate from self-replication and repetition.

What Would You Tell Your Younger Self?

  • Learn to negotiate.
  • Know whose opinion matters to you.
  • It’s impossible to make everyone happy.
  • Don’t take it personally.
  • Tomorrow is not guaranteed.

Describe a Time When You Felt Proud of Yourself.

Life can be challenging and pull us in a million different directions at once. I realize that not everyone has the time to learn what they want to know about Lightroom and Photoshop. Fortunately for me, it’s a part of my job. Every time I can help people achieve what they want to create using these tools, I feel like I’m making a valuable contribution to the industry. If I can explain a concept, demonstrate a technique, or provide inspiration to help someone succeed, then I’m delighted. I find that helping others excel and having a positive impact on their lives is one of the most rewarding things you can do. When a spark ignites in one mind, its radiance brightens the entire room, spreading illumination to all.

What Are You Still Learning About Life?

That every time I think I know something, I realize that my knowledge is just a fraction of what there is to discover.

Thank you, Julieanne, for sharing your time with us at FStoppers and our readers worldwide.

Readers, if you could get a "Create your own question" card, what would you write on it for this legend? Leave a comment below.

Michelle VanTine's picture

Michelle creates scroll-stopping images for amazing brands and amazing people. She works with businesses, public figures, sports & products. Titled “Top Sports Photographers in Miami” in 2019 (#5) and 2020 (#4), she was the only female on the list both years. Follow the fun on IG @michellevantinephotography @sportsphotographermiami

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Fascinating article, thank you. I don't have a question. Julieanne is a superb educator and that's clearly because she is devoted to the Ps/LR programs and it's always interesting to hear the words of those who are experts in their field.

Thank you, Ivor Rackham she is superbly brilliant. I loved learning a little bit about the personal side, the self-development. So many of these lessons are those which I am learning and relearning regularly. Thanks for reading!