As a freelance graphic designer in London during the 80's, Russell Tate practiced his craft in the traditional analogue way. Then, in 1991 he moved to Australia when he was invited to art direct a magazine called TV Hits. The publication's artists were using computers, but Tate was not immediately impressed. "The laser proofs weren't very accurate", he said, "so I was put off using computers for a while, thinking you just got whatever the computer gave you."
Tate's attitude to digital design gradually began to turn when, as he says, "I twigged that maybe it wasn't the machines, it was the people using them." But the real breakthrough came when he investigated a curiously named application on the company's system. "I'd seen this program on the system. It was something called Illustrator and no one really knew how it worked." While he experimented with using a page layout program for illustrations, Tate still mainly used marking pens and other conventional tools. But Illustrator 1.0 changed all that and he's been using successive iterations of the software ever since.