Physical Photoshop Machine

November 2014


This project is a result of a two-week workshop with the Berlin based artist Ralf Baecker. With a background in computer science, he is interested in translating the digital world to physical speculative machines and installations. For more information about Ralf Baecker, visit

We were particularly interested in the origin of digital interfaces. The icons in Photoshop’s toolbar for example are based on real life objects. What if we can bring these tools back to life? What if we are able to Photoshop reality like a 21st century Realist artist? The glass window is the canvas with rulers and the crop tool. The drawers on the left contain the tools and under the window you have the color swatches. Wheels under the construction make the Physical Photoshop Machine mobile so you can Photoshop anything and everything. The translation from digital to analog definitely makes one appreciate the convenience and speed of the software, which we have become so accustomed to.

Presenting of the PPM to the first years

Using the 'CTRL+z' tool

Copy paste and draw function demonstration

Photoshop filters

Filter rack

Yellow filter on screen

Photoshop toolbox bar

Crop tool and color swatches