How did I get started?

I began my career as a professional illustrator almost 30 years ago. I started off in advertising and design and quickly graduated to full time  illustration and eventually to owning and operating my own business. Aside from illustration and design I am an instructor at Wake Technical Community College where I teach Adobe Illustrator, Photshop and InDesign. These are also the programs I use on a daily basis to keep my business competitive and running smoothly. Without them I would have a very difficult time making a living as an artist.

What I Teach

  • Photoshop – The most important software tool for any artist to learn.
  • Illustrator – More paying jobs are requiring vector art these days. If you want to stay competitive learn this program.
  • InDesign – Knowing InDesign will help you understand how art directors and layout artist work with your art once it completed.
  • Tutoring¬† – Online or in person there is no better more efficient way to learn what you want to learn when you want to learn it.



The Importance of Learning from a Working Professional

Not only am I an instructor and coach but I’m also a working professional.

If you really want to learn what works you need to learn from a pro. I’ve been illustrating professionally for the past 25 years. My art has appeared in close to 300 books and in hundreds of logos all over the world. I have been working with the Adobe programs for almost as long as they have been available. My lessons plans don’t come from a book or a manual. The techniques I teach are the same I use for my own business on a daily basis.

Learning On Line

The advantage of tutoring

When it comes to learning software there are a lot of ways to get from point A to point B but many of them end up leaving you stranded. Where do you go when you have a question? What do you do when the information you need to learn isn’t part of the program. Personalized tutoring session allow you to learn what you want, when you want. We work at your pace whether you want to move quickly or need a gentler learning curve.

  • Tutoring session are set up in person or online
  • Each session lasts one hour
  • Students are able to access a recorded video screen share of online sessions through DropBox
  • I will work directly with all students to set up a personalized course to fit your needs
  • Meeting times are flexible and suited to your schedule

]photo Bob Ostrom wake tech

Which Program is right for me

Is it best to start with one program over another?

ps-iconPhotoshop – Many people ask me which program they should learn first. My answer depends on what you do and how you plan to use the programs. In general, if you’re not sure where to start and are just looking for a program that does it all, my advice would be to begin with Photoshop. It’s really the most intuitive of the programs I teach and also the most versatile. It is a huge program but most people only use a small portion of it. However you chose to use the program it’s a great place to start.

ai-iconIllustrator – For design, illustration and graphic work Illustrator is your best choice. It’s a little less intuitive than Photoshop and takes a some time to get to know. There is no other program I know of that does a better job creating vector art than illustrator.

indesign-iconInDesign – For Layout and design, InDesign is king. This program is often overlooked by artists because there are other programs artists can use to get them by. If you’re tired of just getting by though InDesign is a must. This program is hands down the best layout program in the creative suite. It is the industry standard for layout and design. I highly recommend all artists learn this program so they can have a complete understanding of the design process. InDesign is used by almost all printers with very few exceptions. If you want to be competitive as a designer you MUST know this program.



  1. Hi
    Just wondering if the three part course on line work and colour is based on Adobe Illustrator?

    If so how long are each video and is there a program version best for the material covered? I have Adobe 5.5…

    The course looks interesting and am hunting for good tutorials on creating good cartoon images via Illustrator..


    Phil Judd

    • Hi Phil,
      The videos are being edited as I type this and will be available shortly.
      Each video is a little over an hour in length and they are excellent for cartoonists!
      I teach all programs using the very latest version of Adobe software. These videos were all done using Adobe Illustrator. Most of the techniques I teach will apply to earlier versions of the software, just be aware that newer versions of the software contain tools and methods that aren’t available with older versions.
      Hope that helps.


  2. Hi Bob
    I am following up my inquiry above from last year to whether your online video lessons are available for purchase. I am based in Australia so being able to purchase and veiw in my own time is the way to go as opposed to the online live lessons. I am really keen to learn what you are showing here. It looks terrific.

    • Hi Phil,

      Thanks for staying in touch. the videos are ready and you may purchase them at any time.
      I will be running a special bundle package this coming week March 16th.


  3. Hi There!
    I Appreciate that you are sharing your knowledge with us!
    I’m 18years Old just started out in graphic designing field, presently learning adobe illustrator,
    Thank you

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