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John Knoll 2000 photo

John Knoll is a visual effects supervisor who co-created Adobe Photoshop.

While John was a young employee at Industrial Light & Magic in 1988, his brother Thomas Knoll created a simple program named Display 0.07 to show simulated grayscale graphics on a Macintosh Plus computer.[1] John convinced Thomas to to turn Display into a full image editing application. John then met with executives at Barneyscan, Apple Computer, and finally Adobe Systems, to help close a distribution deal that would eventually lead to Adobe Photoshop 1.0. During development, he also created plug-ins for Photoshop.[2]

Jennifer in Paradise 1987

"Jennifer in Paradise"

Knoll used a 1987 vacation photo of his fiancée Jennifer at Bora Bora as the first demonstration image for early versions of Photoshop.[3]


  1. Celebrating Photoshop’s 25th anniversary by Martin Evening, Jeff Schewe, Amateur Photographer. 2015-02-17.
  2. Thomas and John Knoll by Jeff Schewe, Photoshop News, originally published in PEI Magazine. 2000-09.
  3. Jennifer in paradise: the story of the first Photoshopped image by Gordon Comstock, The Guardian. 2014-06-13.

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