Corel Painter Master - John Derry

Name: John Derry
Occupation/Profession: Artist
Employer: freelance
Location: Overland Park, Kansas
Hobbies: Photography, Guitar, Bicycling


How long have you been in this profession?

Why did you choose this profession?
As a kid, I was always the best artist in my class.

How did you get started?
Drawing a turkey for my first grade classroom's bulletin board.

What are your most important accomplishments?
Co-authoring Painter with Mark Zimmer and Tom Hedges.

Describe a special moment in your career.
The American art icon Robert Rauschenberg has been my "art hero" since high school. I've studied and emulated much of his stylistic vocabulary for many years.

In 1996, I was presented with the opportunity to attend a dinner at the United Nations in honor of Rauschenberg's artistic contributions to various global philanthropic fundraising activities. It was there that I met Mr. Rauschenberg and presented him with a "can" of Painter. (He accepted the can, shook it and said, "There's no paint in it!")

History with Painter

How long have you used Painter?
Since 1992, before it was released.

Why did you choose Painter?
It chose me.

Do you have any interesting/funny/noteworthy stories?
During the early development of Painter, Mark Zimmer and I traveled extensively, visiting with end users to solicit their input as to how to improve the product. At a design firm we visited, a designer had made the paint can into an attractive planter!

What are your top five favorite Painter features?
Artists' Oils, Image Hose, Smeary Oil Brushes, Custom Variant Palette, Rotate Page

What are the Painter features that allow you to distinguish your art?
Painter's ability to let my own style come through. I believe this single ability distinguishes Painter from other software.

Is it possible to get the same results with other digital painting software?
Painter excels at emulating natural media on the computer. No other painting software attempts to delve as deeply into natural media emulation as Painter, so the results will be different. Not necessarily better or worse, just different.

How do you feel about Painter?
As one of the "fathers" of Painter, it has been very rewarding for me to watch it grow up and be accepted by artists all over the world. My greatest reward is seeing the amazing variety of art created by it. I love it!


I have specific sets of variants that I regularly use, depending on the kind of work I am doing (e.g., photographic interpretation).

Step 1:
I create custom palettes of these variant sets.
Step 2:
I save the Custom Palette for easy retrieval.
Step 3:
I drag a Custom Palette into the Colors Palette.
Step 4:
I position it at the top for instant access to my custom tool set.
Step 5:
You can even position multiple Custom Palettes together and open/close as needed!