The Adobe Certified Associate (ACA) World Championship is a global competition that tests students’ skills in designing in Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, or InDesign. Presented by Certiport, students are invited to represent their respective countries at the world championship.
Recurring for its 8th consecutive year, the 2021 competition attracted more than 65,000 applicants from 65 countries to prove their design skills. Among the group of competitors, a 23-year-old Malaysian took first place, receiving a prize of US $ 7,000.
Meet Danny Tse Wei Chun
Currently coordinating producer at Omens Animation Studios, Danny was born in Alor Setar, Kedah. In an interview with Vulcan Post, he shared that his design talent took off when he joined his core program at Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR).
After earning a degree in digital animation, he delved deeper into the ins and outs of Photoshop and developed his animation skills, including character design and illustration.
It was during his 2nd year of college that Danny became more active and joined the school’s editorial team for events. There he had more exposure to creating posters.
“It sparked my interest because I was happy to see the ability of visual design to grab someone’s attention,” Danny told us. However, poster design is not necessarily its main interest, it is illustration.
If the opportunity arises, Danny hopes to be a great illustrator in the future.
Champion through the stages
Danny heard about the ACA design competition through a speaker at UTAR before graduating in August 2021. He took the opportunity to test his skills in the national version of the competition first, the ACA Malaysia 2021 Championship. .
Hosted by Acestar, a well-known local IT vendor, the nationwide competition narrows down its top 30 students who will take an 8-hour live test without access to internet references for design inspiration. Acestar told Vulcan Post that Malaysia is the only country to perform this live test to simulate actual competition, and only 3 winners can emerge. These 3 will then be prepared for the world stage.
This year Malaysia managed to train 2 design students who reached the Top 5 at the ACA World Championship 2021. With Danny in 1st place, Sze Ting Teo of Tunku Abdul Rahman University College (TARUC) came in 5th.
During the global competition, students had 6 hours to design a project for Limbitless Solutions, an American bionics manufacturer who was chosen as this year’s non-profit client. And if you’ve used Adobe Creative Cloud software before, you’ll know that a lot can go wrong when you’re rushing for a client.
A lot can go wrong in 6 hours
Entering the competition without any prior knowledge of Limbitless Solutions, Danny only received the client’s logo, a few illustrations of his Bionic child comic book characters and its title. The rest had to be designed from scratch with one of the creative software provided through the competition’s virtual machine, where it went into deep water.
Danny explained that it took him and most of the participants over an hour to log into the virtual machine at the start of the 6-hour competition. Also, all participants should be given a single sign-on link, but Danny and another Malaysian participant received the same, and it took a while for them to realize it.
It was beyond the designers’ abilities to solve the problem, so they had to bring in the competition’s technical team.
Additionally, Danny, who is proficient in Adobe Photoshop, reported that the Virtual Machine software’s Pen tool was malfunctioning.
“It affected my performance in the competition because [the Pen tool] is an important feature for creating good illustrations in Adobe Photoshop, ”said Danny, who had to come out of a momentary sense of defeat to focus his attention on his secondary strength, Adobe Illustrator.
But just when he thought he was out of the woods, the software started to fall behind when the effects were applied. With a slowdown after each new edit, Danny decided to export each layer from Adobe Illustrator and organize them in Adobe Photoshop.
Whether intentional or not, Danny’s quick wit and ability to problem-solve within the Creative Suite suggests his great mastery of using them.
It is not known whether or not the judges were aware of its design process. However, Danny has always produced a design that won in the areas of visual appeal, ability to meet customer demands, brand aesthetics, and its use of Adobe Creative Cloud applications.
Now armed with a total of $ 7,000, Danny plans to use the prize fund to treat his family and speakers to thank them for their support. He will then save the rest for his future to hopefully use as living expenses in the United States, where he hopes to work as an illustrator.
- You can read more about the 2021 Adobe Certified Associates World Championship here.
- Read more articles on Malaysian creations here.
Image Credit Featured: Danny Tse Wei Chun, 1st Place Winner at the 2021 Adobe Certified Associates World Championship
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